Wisteria Propagation - Knowledgebase Question

Name: Grace Martin
Fayette City, PA
Avatar for martro
Question by martro
April 20, 1998
I would like to know if it is possible to propagate
wisteria from cuttings? If so, how is this done?

Answer from NGA
April 20, 1998
It's best to propogate wisteria by "serpentine layering." This involves rooting a vigorous young vine while it's still attached to the parent plant. Once it has developed roots, you can sever the shoot from the parent and transplant it. You can get several plants from one shoot this way. In mid-spring to mid-summer, choose a long, vigorously growing young shoot (current season's growth). Make sure it can easily reach the ground, as you'll be burying two or more sections of the shoot in the soil. Ideally there should be leaf nodes at regular intervals; every few inches is best. (Boy, a diagram would be really helpful right now!). Choose two or more nodes to bury for rooting. These nodes should have 2-3 other leafy nodes on either side of them. Then dig holes for these nodes. They need to be deep enough that the shoot will stay securely placed - sometimes it helps to peg them down with a stone or earth staple. (You can also use pots of light, well-drained soil, rich in sphagnum peat, for ideal rooting conditions.) Remove the leaves from the chosen nodes, and wound the stem by making several angled cuts halfway through the stem, right behind the leaf node. Bend the shoot so the wounds will stay open underground - this is where new root tissue will form, and if it's allowed to close, it will probably just heal shut. Repeat this with the other chosen nodes on the shoot - the result should look like a wave or a sea monster rising out of the water - hence the serpentine title! Keep soil slightly moist - don't let it dry out, but don't keep it soggy. Roots should form within the following year. You can keep it simple if you want, and layer just a tip of a shoot instead.

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