|Ducks enjoying the North East River|
Today was a typical early winter day - frosty in the morning and then warmer as the sun came into full strength. I couldn't help but want to work outside, knowing that in just a few weeks, there was a high possibility that snow would be covering everything. So, the next decision was what to do outside. I wandered down to the water and snapped a couple pictures of ducks but not finding any eagles, I moved on. Our shed needed a little attention as we had been tossing various items inside without any sense of order so I spent a little time cleaning it up.
Seeing all the garden tools made me want to plant something. I love growing plants and find a satisfaction from the process of watching them grow. Somewhere in my readings, an author explained her love of gardening was a result of seeing progress in the plants, unlike so many of her daily tasks at work or home that were repetitious and never changing.
|Fig bush cuttings|
Today, I was cleaning up some debris in my yard and noticed that some of my fig bush clippings were still green on the inside, in spite of the fact that I cut them a few weeks ago and the nighttime temperatures had dropped below freezing for many of the nights. I pulled them out of the pile of yard waste and cut about eight sections, each with four or five leaf nodes.
|Fill with garden soil|
Some people use rooting hormones, but since I didn't have any and I have had great success on other cuttings without using any, I decided to forgo its use. We have chickens who produce wonderful dark black compost from our kitchen scraps, so I filled a small plant pot about three quarters full.
|Press fig branches into the soil|
Starting new plants from cuttings is so easy and free! I simply poked the cuttings into the soil so that at least two or three of the nodes were covered.
Next, I watered them to settle the soil and make better contact between the cuttings and the dirt.
|Cover with plastic|
Finally, I covered them with a plastic bag to create a nice humid atmosphere around them.
Now they are sitting in the newly straightened out shed, waiting for spring. I expect they will start rooting in about four weeks and then depending how cold the shed gets, I might get leaves any where from late February to late April. Of course, I will then transplant them into their own pots.
With that project done, I think I will continue and do the same thing with some other woody perennials I have around here.
Think concord grapes, red currants, roses, azaleas...