Not every plant is a candidate for the hardwood-cutting method of propagation. The ones that do qualify are mostly deciduous trees or shrubs that go through a period of dormancy before pushing significant new growth. Here are several methods to cut them and get good results.
- Roll the branches in plastic, place the roll in a cold frame or a protected place outside. Unroll the package in late summer, and replant the rooted cuttings.
- Put them in a pot to get the best root development. Place the pot in a cold frame or in an unheated location where it will receive some light, and keep it there throughout winter and into spring. Keep the soil fairly dry during the coldest months. Increase watering as the days get warmer, and move the pot outside to a partially shaded spot after the last frost.
- Sink them into the soil to let nature do the work. Cover the cuttings with a floating row cover to help them overwinter outside without damage. Remove the cover in spring, when you start to see sprouting. Wait until late summer or early fall before transplanting the rooted cuttings.