Cranberries are not grown from seeds but rather from one-year-old cuttings or three-year-old seedlings. Sure, you can purchase cuttings and these will be a year old and have a root system, or you can try growing cranberries from unrooted cuttings that you have taken yourself. Rooting cranberry cuttings may require some patience, but for the dedicated gardener, that’s half the fun. Interested in trying your own cranberry cutting propagation? Read on to find out how to root cranberry cuttings.
About Cranberry Cutting Propagation
Remember that cranberry plants do not produce fruit until their third or fourth year of growth. If you choose to try rooting your own cranberry cuttings, be prepared to add another year onto this time frame. But, really, what’s another year?
When growing cranberries from cuttings, take the cuttings in the very early spring or in early July. The plant from which you take the cuttings should be well hydrated and healthy.
How to Root Cranberry Cuttings
Cut lengths that are 8 inches (20 cm.) in length using very sharp, sanitized shears. Remove flower buds and most of the leaves, leaving only the top 3-4 leaves.
Insert the cut end of the cranberry cutting into a nutrient rich, lightweight medium such as a mixture of sand and compost. Place the potted cutting in a warm shaded area in a greenhouse, frame or propagator. Within 8 weeks, the cuttings should have rooted.
Harden the new plants off before planting them into a larger container. Grow them in the container for a full year before transplanting them into the garden.
In the garden, transplant the cuttings to two feet apart (1.5 m.). Mulch around the plants to help retain water and keep the plants regularly watered. Fertilize the plants for their first couple of years with a food that is high in nitrogen to encourage upright shoots. Every few years, cut out any dead wood and trim new runners to encourage berry production.