I want to try to root some fig cuttings. I have no experience with either grafting or rooting.
I have visited many forums dedicated to figs, saw many videos on Youtube and so on and found that there are so many established methods (and personal methods too with variations) to roots figs that I don’t know how to select one of them…
I have very good LED growing lamps, heating mat, plentiful of Ziploc bags, could buy rooting hormone too and a handy garage etc…
Sometimes I believe I will put all methods in a bag and let fortune decides for me… If you strongly believe one method is better than the next, please tell me!
I will root Rondes de Bordeaux cuttings mainly. Nothing is warranted so how many more cuttings should I root if I want to end up with 12 plants alive?
I did few hundred cuttings and documented whole thing here , you can take a look and ask any question you have and I will try to answer. I do remember when I started four years ago and was very confused.
I used about 90% optisorb and 10% coconut coir under a lightbulb style cheapo grow light and had 9/9 hardy Chicago takes. I highly recommend optisorb/Napa floor dry (coarse diatomaceous earth) for this purpose as well as general gardening to replace perlite. Great for me so far.
Edit- I also scraped the cambium layer and applied root hormone powder for good measure. 2-3 lines are enough scrapes for good root development, I think I did about 1.5"
where do you get your fig cuttings from? are you buying them? or do you have access to a large fig tree/shrub?
Fig roots quite readily. If had good results with dormant cuttings.
Some i juist pruned off the tree outside, stuck in the ground during dormant season, and where rooted in spring.
If also had good results wrapping the top part of the cutting in parafilm. And pushing the bottom part in 100% coco choir. I add water to the coco coir until a drop falls out when i squeeze a handful. It still feels quite dry at that point. But you don’t want it to wet. For me this is around 2.1-2.5 liter of water per brick of coco coir (brick weighs between 500-600 gram)
I especially like this method, since due to the parafilm, you can leaving this cutting out in the open. (for me a dark room)
Often when my fig cuttings fail, it’s from fungus/rot from to much moisture and to little fresh air.
I put the coir in transparant containers, that way i can see roots developing and know i can transplant. I usually root in a dark room. since lighted growing space is always in short supply in the winter. And also because i believe this helps the cuttings delay making leaves, and thus i usually transplant when there are roots but no leaves. Giving me less transplant shock. I have not scientific link or proof for this though. And have also rooted cuttings under light. My experience is that both methods work just fine.
I really like the fig pop method (see figbid article below). I’ve only done about 12 cuttings from various figs over the last two years, but I’ve only had 2 duds. Whatever method you’re using, the keys are keeping the rooting medium just damp enough, keeping the tops from drying out, and having temps in the proper range. The fig pop method basically makes the first two items a non-issue. So long as you have the right moisture level in the soil to begin with, you don’t have to worry about the levels fluctuating until you start to see roots and leaves. Since the plastic bag keeps the moisture levels from fluctuating, you can also just use the same medium you plan to grow them on in. One of the big failure points I notice is with folks rooting them in open pots, the medium dries out and they have to water. It’s very easy to end up with conditions that are too moist.
Edit: One other consideration, give the cuttings a soak in a 10% bleach solution. It will sanitize the surface, making it much less likely to have any issues with mold or rot.
The easiest IME is rooting outdoors in the shade with a well draining potting medium. I’ve also had good luck direct planting indoors. You just have to be careful of your soil moisture so they don’t rot.