Contributed by: Leaf
Submitted: 02-10-2003 Introduction:
The idea here is to scarify
the stem of your cutting so that there is more area in
which the cutting can have the opportunity to grow roots
and therefore hopefully increase your rooting success
rate. You will need a sharp razor blade and a flat
surface to scarify your stem.
The first thing you do is cut
your clone at a 45-degree angle; this will expose both
the inner and outer area of the stem. Now lay your
cutting on a flat surface. Visualize about an inch from
the cut end and place your razor blade at this point.
Gently, and with the slightest pressure, push
the blade to the end removing a fine outer layer of the
stem. Don't be in a hurry - there is no going back.
Gently scrape the stem with your blade until you can
clearly see the internal tissue layers. You have just
successfully scarified your cutting.
Now it is back to the regular cloning methods.
Dip into your cloning gel or powder and place into rock
wool, soil, water, peat pellet, or aero cloner. When
dipping your stems into your preferred cloning solution,
you will want to ensure that you get the very tip
(remember the 45-degree angle cut) and the length, which
you have scarred. I have used cloning powder for
demonstration purposes so you can easily see where I
have applied the powder to the cutting.
This last image shows a
successfully rooted clone that has used this simple
scarification method. As you can see there are roots
that have emerged from the full length of the scarring
and not just from the bottom. This will give your newly
rooted plant a much better survival and initial growth
This method is also very useful for hard to clone
cuttings and woody cuts which do not take to rooting
easily. It is also a good method to practice at all
times and in general it greatly increases rooting
success and shortens rooting time. Other tips that one
can use for those stubborn cuttings are to cut the
bottom of your stem into quadrants to expose more
surface area. One could also scarify two or three sides
of the stem as opposed to the one side illustrated here
to really give an advantage to those stubborn cuttings
that will just not take. Just remember when scarifying
more than one surface it becomes crucial that removing
too much material off any one surface will ensure
Some plants which generally take around
8 to 10 days to root, once applying this method, it is
not uncommon to have roots after 5 or 6 days.
One last tip, I like to soak my new cuts in a
glass of cool tap water for 15-20 minutes before
preparing them to root. The chlorine in the water will
kill any bacteria present and the cool oxygen filled
water will be absorbed by the plant, giving it lots of
reserve strength to push out those roots.
luck and happy rooting!