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Question
I really ;like our dwarf Hinoki cypress tree, and our weeping blue nooka .. I was hoping to grow some from their seed pods or better yet grow some trees from cuttings... not sure what the best method is or procedure in general, perhaps you have some knowledge you could impart to me...thanks for your time.

Answer
Skot, I would offer one word of caution about propagating from seed. Seeds grown from your own plants will not necessarily inherit the same traits as the parent plant. The majority of plants sold today are hybrids. Hybrids are bred for specific colors, growing habits, and disease resistance not found in heirloom plants. Hybrid seed are genetically created from two different parent plants by breeders for the characteristics described on the seed packet. You should only propagate your own seed if they are harvested from heirlooms or open-pollinated varieties. These plants will produce seed which will replicate the characteristics of the parent plant. If unsure, you should assume they are hybrids.

Cuttings are without a doubt the easiest method to propagate an existing plant, and also a sure-proof method to ensure the exact characteristics that you wish to replicate from the parent plant.

Simply cut a tender shoot that is at least six inches long. Remove the lower sets of leaves. Dip the cutting in a rooting compound. You can purchase this product at any garden center. Stick the cutting one inch into a good potting mix. Be sure to thoroughly wet the soil prior to planting.

Finally, cover the pot with a clear piece of lightweight plastic. Place the pot in indirect sunlight on an east window sill or under fluorescent lighting. After two weeks, check to see if the plant has rooted by slightly pulling on the stem. If you feel resistance, remove the plastic covering and be sure to keep the soil moist. The plant should then be treated as any other seedling.

Good luck, and please write again if I can ever be of assistance.

Regards,

Mike

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Mike Mascio

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I have been an avid gardener since 1985 and an AllExpert volunteer since 1998. I specialize in soil preparation, seed starting and plant propagation, flowers, vegetables, and general landscaping. I am a strong advocate of the square foot method of gardening and the use of organic controls for pests and diseases.

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