Q:

How do you start a tree from a branch?

A:

Quick Answer

The best way to grow a tree from a branch is to take the most recent season's growth, removing buds, flowers and some of the leaves on the branch. The plant must be kept in high humidity, and to achieve this, cover the pot with a bottomless milk carton, or place the pot in a plastic bag.

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Full Answer

Planting a tree starting with the branch, known as stem cutting, is a common method used to grow trees. The best way to grow a tree from stem cutting is if the branch is from the most recent season's growth. It's best to cut the branch in early morning, because the plant is fully engorged at that point in the day. Older branches may not root. Heavily fertilized plants, especially fertilizer with nitrogen, may not root well.

Removing the buds and flowers helps to preserve energy for producing roots and not more flowers. Leaves on the lower third of the branch should be removed, but larger leaves can be trimmed down to conserve water. The time it takes for the branch to root is different with each species. Branches that have new roots flourish when they continue to grow and stabilize before the transfer into the ground.

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