How to Start New Blueberry Bushes From Old

Overview

While blueberries aren't known for being easy to propagate, it's far from impossible and well within reach of the average home gardener. It doesn't require any special knowledge or specialized equipment, and most gardeners will already have the necessities on hand. Rooting cuttings from an old blueberry bush allows you not only to replicate a favorite blueberry, but inexpensively grow more, share the plant with friends and family or take a plant with you when you relocate.

Step 1

Mix peat moss and perlite in equal amounts.

Step 2

Fill a planting pot 3/4 full with the peat moss and perlite mixture.

Step 3

Cut a 6-inch shoot off the existing blueberry plant. It can be either hardwood (old growth) or softwood (new growth), depending on the time of year. In late spring and early summer, usually May, June and July, softwood cuttings are usually available and will typically root faster, but also require gentle handling.

Step 4

Remove the leaves from the bottom half of the cutting by gently pinching them off.

Step 5

Dip the bottom end of the cutting into rooting hormone.

Step 6

Push the bottom 2 inches of the cutting into the soil in the planting pot.

Step 7

Water the cutting, making sure the soil is completely moistened.

Step 8

Cover the pot with a clear plastic bag.

Step 9

Place the covered cutting in a warm room in indirect sunlight.

Step 10

Water the cutting regularly, making sure it does not dry out.

Step 11

Check for roots after about six weeks by gently brushing away a little bit of soil. If roots have formed, the new blueberry plant can start the hardening process by being placed outside during the day and brought in at night for about two weeks before being planted in the ground. If roots have not appeared, wait another two to three weeks before hardening.

Tips and Warnings

  • Check the variety of the blueberry plant before propagating. If it is a patented variety, it is illegal to propagate. Many newer varieties of blueberries are patented.

Things You'll Need

  • Peat moss
  • Pearlite
  • Planting pot
  • Clear plastic bag or plastic wrap
  • Sharp knife or pruning shears
  • Rooting hormone

References

  • North Carolina State University: Plant Propagation by Stem Cuttings
  • Michigan State University Extension: Blueberries
Keywords: start new blueberry bushes from old bushes, propagate blueberry bushes from old ones, grown blueberry bushes from cuttings

About this Author

Carlye Jones is a journalist, freelance writer, photographer and novelist, with more than 15 years of experience. She enjoys sharing her expertise on home improvements, interior decorating, photography, gardening and traveling. Her work has appeared both in print and on numerous websites, such as Matador Travel. Carlye received her training at Northern Arizona University.