Growing Figs from Cuttings: How to Master the Art of Rooting Fig Cuttings
Discover the ins and outs of rooting fig cuttings with my easy-to-follow guide, packed with expert tips, foolproof methods, and essential tools. I’ll walk you through the entire process.
Say goodbye to failed attempts and hello to lush, healthy figs as you delve into the art of propagation and transform your garden into a fig lover's paradise!
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Taking Fig Cuttings
Taking cuttings from a fig tree is the first step when trying to propagate a new tree.
The best time to take fig cuttings is in winter or when your tree is dormant. This allows you to take hardwood cuttings, which are more likely to root successfully and don’t require a misting setup like softwood cuttings would. See the section of the article below about rooting green softwood cuttings.
When it comes to selecting wood to prune off of your own fig tree, there are no hard and fast rules on size, shape, or lignification level. The key to success lies in maintaining the right soil moisture and rooting environment. However, hardwood cuttings taken from in-ground trees that have healthy growth and no visible signs of fig mosaic virus (FMV) are preferable, as they often have more stored energy and can produce better results.
If you’re not going to root your hardwood fig cuttings immediately after pruning, it’s important to store them properly to prevent them from drying out until you’re ready to root them outside or until your indoor rooting environment is set up.
However, you want to make sure that you’re storing them properly for longer-term storage. When stored properly, I’ve rooted cuttings that were taken a whole year prior and I regularly root my own cuttings that were taken 4-6 months prior. After trying just about every storage method, I recommend that you store them in 2 layers of plastic that are both 90% of the way closed and placed in your crisper drawer.
Materials to Gather Before Rooting:
Pruning shears: For pruning and scoring the bottom of the cutting.
Rooting hormone (optional): Although optional, I would highly recommend using Clonex as it can help form a strong root system before too many leaves are formed without the support of a root system.
Parafilm or buddy tape: For wrapping the cutting to maintain moisture.
Soil mix: A well-draining mix with materials like rice hulls, shredded bark, perlite, vermiculite, pro-mix, coco coir, peat moss, or even worm castings and compost.
Treepots (4 inches by 9 inches): For the direct potting method.
Plant tags: For labeling your cuttings. Use vinyl blinds and a pencil. There’s nothing more affordable and longer-lasting.
Ziploc bags (6 inches by 14 inches, 2 millimeters thick): For the Fig Pop method.
Rubber bands or file bands: To seal the bags for the Fig Pop method.
Grow lights or heating mats (optional): To maintain the ideal temperature of 78 degrees Fahrenheit for rooting fig cuttings and to help fig cuttings grow indoors.