How to Take Blueberry Cuttings

Overview

The quickest and easiest way to propagate a blueberry bush is through planting cuttings from an existing plant. Gardeners can take cuttings from new growth in the spring (softwood cutting) or older growth in the late fall or early winter (hardwood cutting). In taking cuttings, be sure that the bush is healthy and you cut properly, so that the new bush has a chance of surviving.

Step 1

Choose whether to take softwood cuttings in the spring or hardwood cuttings in the winter when the bush stops growing. Softwood cuttings root more easily, but take more care when transporting and rooting.

Step 2

Find a vigorously growing bush from which to take the cuttings. Inspect the bush for symptoms of disease including spotted leaves or stems or bare branches. If anything looks out of the ordinary, do not take from this bush as it may transfer disease to the new bush.

Step 3

Find branches from the upper part of the bush that are suitable for cutting. For softwood cuttings, look for new branches just hardening. These branches should have a gradation in the age of the leaves ranging from just emerging to fully mature. For hardwood cuttings, look for one- to two-year-old established branches.

Step 4

Measure 4 to 6 inches from the tip of the chosen branches. Make a diagonal cut clean through each branch at this length.

Step 5

Wrap the cut end of the cuttings in moist paper towels for transport. If you are not rooting the cuttings right away, keep them wrapped in the paper towels and place in the refrigerator.

Things You'll Need

  • Knife
  • Paper towels

References

  • North Carolina State University: Plant Propagation by Stem Cuttings
  • Washington State University: Porpagating Deciduous and Evergreen Shrubs, Trees and Vines with Stem Cuttings
  • North Carolina State University: Growing Blueberries in the Home Garden

Who Can Help

  • University of Georgia Cooperative Extension: Bacterial Leaf Scorch of Blueberry
Keywords: taking blueberry cuttings, inspecting blueberry bushes, propagating blueberry bushes

About this Author

Sarah Morse recently graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in English language and literature. She has been freelancing for three months and got her start writing for an environmental website.