Fuzzy kiwi (Actinidia deliciosa) is a large deciduous vine from Asia that produces the common kiwi fruit found in grocery stores. They can be grown in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 8 through 10. The vines can weigh several hundred pounds when mature, so they require a substantial trellis structure to support them. The easy way to propagate fuzzy kiwi is with hardwood cuttings taken in late winter before the plants emerge from dormancy.
1 Select healthy, vigorous vines to take cuttings from. Because kiwis require cross-pollination, be sure to propagate both male and female plants to ensure good fruit production.
2 Take cuttings from wood that is between 1/4 and 1/2 inch in diameter. The cuttings should be approximately 8 to 10 inches in length. More importantly, there should be at least two leaf nodes on each cutting -- these are the raised bumps along the stems that leaves grow from.
3 Fill gallon-size plastic pots with a sterilized potting mix to use as a rooting medium.
4 Stick the bottom third of each cutting into the rooting medium, making sure at least one leaf node is below the level of the soil in each pot. Use two or three cuttings in each pot in case some do not survive.
5 Place the potted cuttings in a partly shaded area and keep them moist. Once roots have formed, you can keep them in the pots for the remainder of the growing season, and plant them out in the fall.
Items you will need
- Hand pruners
- 1 gallon plastic pots
- Sterilized potting mix
- Paper towels
- Sealable plastic bags
- Rubbing alcohol
- Make sure the cuttings stay in the proper orientation as you collect them and place them in the rooting medium. This can get confusing, because they will not have leaves. The top of the cutting is the end that was toward the growing tip of the vine, and should be the end that is pointing up in the pots.
- If the cuttings cannot be placed in the rooting medium immediately, wrap them in moist paper towels, place them in a sealed plastic bag, and refrigerate them.
- Use of a rooting hormone is optional, though it will increase the success rate of the cuttings. You can find rooting hormone in most major garden centers. Dip the bottom end of each cutting in the rooting hormone before placing it in the rooting medium.
- To help prevent the spread of disease organisms, sterilize your hand pruners with rubbing alcohol after each cutting.
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