I have tried blackberry cuttings several times and have not had any success with them. I can easily propagate with root cuttings, harvesting the suckers, tip and serpentine layering but cane cuttings has proven difficult. Note, I have not tried using the rooting hormone for the cuttings so maybe that is why but research says you can do it without the rooting hormone. I recently did an experiment on stem cuttings trying both primocanes and floricanes along with scratching and no scratching to promote rooting. Neither worked. It’s difficult to keep the right moisture levels. I’ve also tried using a lot of moisture and less moisture along with keeping the cuttings inside and outside in the shade. Still no growth. I don’t want to use a rooting hormone so I’ll stick with root cuttings, harvesting the suckers, tip and serpentine layering which I find the easiest. Check out my experiment below.
Category: Tip Layering
One of my favorite things to grow in the garden are blackberries. They are easy to propagate, cold hardy and great to eat and enjoy with family. See my video below for more details and examples of why I recommend everyone grow blackberries at home!
5 things to do at the end of your blackberry season.
1. Prune the floricanes.
2. Tip the canes to encourage laterals.
3. Add compost/fertilizer.
4. Cane management – attach to trellis.
5. Blackberry propagation – Tip Layering.
You can easily propagate your blackberry plants by tip layering them. Also called tip rooting – I like to do this directly into small plastic cups making it easy to verify that the roots are growing and then share with others! I reuse a plastic container and drill a few holes in the bottom for drainage. Take a blackberry (or raspberry) cane and bring it down and bury the tip about 2-3 inches into the middle of the cup. Cover with a rock on top to keep it in place. Check back in about 3 weeks to see the roots along the bottom. To separate, go back up the cane leaving at least 3 or 4 nodes of leaves and cut. Now you can transplant this to another area of your garden or simply give the cup to family or friends that want to grow their own!
Blackberry Tip Layering – Success!
Tip Rooting/Layering Blackberries – Update 21 days later.
Tip Layering Blackberries / Tip Rooting Blackberry Plants.
Back in April 2020 I received 4 Natchez blackberry plants and built a small raised row down my fence line and planted them. They have done very well since then. Growing from only 4-6 inch small plants to today being over 6 feet tall!
September 29th, 2020
Here they are bending side to side but 2 are still over 6 feet tall and the other 2 are over 5 feet high. They have side shoots and other canes that are reaching over down to the ground and ready for propagation by tip layering. If the tip of the cane touches the ground they will start growing roots and you will have a new blackberry plant that you can then separate from the vine and transplant someplace else or give to a neighbor.
Start by selecting a shoot or cane that can easily be brought to ground level and into a pot. Fill the pot 1/2 full with good quality soil and then take the cane and trim off the leaves near the end.
Place the tip into the pot.
Back fill the pot with more soil to hold in place.
I had several canes that were good candidates for tip layering so I ended up doing 7 pots that I will replant and share a few with friends.
November 24th, 2020
8 weeks later the tip has rooted and it has come back up thru the soil.