Ask a Question forum: Concolor Fir Sprout?

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Name: Sheila
Central Kansas (Zone 6a)
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pinkbubbless66
Jan 22, 2015 10:48 AM CST
We bought a Concolor Fir as our Christmas tree this year. We took it down this weekend and noticed new needles on the ends toward the top. So, being the gardener that I am, I think, "Well, surely I can get this to sprout!" I cut off the top two feet, put it in my crab boil pot with water. All the ends are still bright and opening more. What are the chances of this sprouting roots and being a candidate for growing it outside in my shelter belt? I am in central Kansas.
Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN zone 4a
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Leftwood
Jan 22, 2015 1:05 PM CST
Sorry, the chance is zero.

Even done the right way in a greenhouse, firs a difficult to root. They need special rooting hormones and wood to root from that is only one to two years old. That's why fir trees are propagated by seed or grafting, and not by rooted cuttings. Even if it were to root, the pattern of root growth and its attachment to the upper part of the tree would make it unstable in the long run and would surely blow over in a strong wind (not even a storm).

Experienced propagators who root woody plant materials (including conifers) know that it is a bad sign if growth in the above ground part of the cutting occurs before roots are established. Energy is being directed away from potential root growth, and the plant exhausts itself when it runs out of nutrients with no way to replace them (no roots).

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