The Best Method to Sprout a Rose Bush Cutting


Rose bushes can be propagated using soft wood, semi-hard wood or hard wood cuttings. This means you can start to root a new rose bush almost any time of year. Soft wood roots the fastest but can be difficult if the cuttings are still in the succulent stage. Keeping the cuttings in a humid environment is the key and the challenge to rooting the cuttings. This requires a little more maintenance than some other propagating, but well worth it when you have a new bush that you've rooted yourself.

Step 1

Mix 1 part peat moss and 1 part perlite and fill a small container. Water the soil until it is moist but not soggy. If you over water, allow it to drain and dry out a bit. Stick your finger in the center to create a 2-inch planting hole. Do this before you take the cutting, so it can be immediately planted.

Step 2

Take a cutting from the upper section of the bush early in the morning. The cutting should be 6 inches long with 2 or 3 nodes on it. Use a sharp knife and cut on a 45 degree angle. Nodes are the tiny bumps where the bud will appear.

Step 3

Remove all the leaves from the cut end, 2 inches up. Cut the remaining leaves on the cutting in half. Take off any flowers or flower buds from the cutting.

Step 4

Dip the cut end of the cutting in the rooting hormone and gently knock off any excess. Stick the cutting in the planting hole and firm the soil around it.

Step 5

Place a clear plastic bag over the cutting and container and place the container in a warm area with indirect sunlight. Direct sunlight will most likely cook the cutting.

Step 6

Check the soil every few days to make sure it stays moist. Add water if it starts to dry out at all. Mist the plant with a spray bottle filled with distilled water each time you check the soil. Tap water sometimes contains chemicals that are not good for plants.

Step 7

Transplant the cutting to a larger pot or a flower bed when the roots reach 1 to 3 inches long--this will take three to six weeks. Give a very gentle tug on the cutting and if it resists, you have roots. If you don't have roots by six weeks, start over with a new cutting.

Things You'll Need

  • Sharp knife
  • Rooting hormone
  • Small container
  • Peat moss
  • Perlite
  • Plastic bag
  • Spray bottle
  • Distilled water


  • North Carolina State University: Plant Propagation by Stem Cuttings: Instructions for the Home Gardener
  • North Dakota State University: Rose Propagation
  • University of Georgia Cooperative Extension: Propagating Shrubs from Cuttings
Keywords: rose bush cuttings, sprout rose bush, propagating rose bushes

About this Author

Dale DeVries is a retired realtor with 30 years of experience in almost every facet of the business. DeVries started writing in 1990 when she wrote advertising and training manuals for her real estate agents. Since retiring, she has spent the last two years writing well over a thousand articles online for Associated Content, Bright Hub and Demand Studios.