propagation by cuttings

Discussion in 'Maples' started by katsura, Feb 12, 2006.

  1. katsura

    katsura Active Member 10 Years

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    Novato, California
    My maples are beginning to leaf out with much bud swelling. Is this the right time
    to clip several inches of twig, root hormone it and plant it in some starting soil?
    Can we discuss best times and methods to propagate cuttings please.
    Thank you.
  2. graftedmaplecollector

    graftedmaplecollector Active Member 10 Years

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    This is my first year trying that. I have tried with regular green first.
  3. Layne Uyeno

    Layne Uyeno Active Member 10 Years

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    Los Angeles, CA

    Wait till after the maple is done pushing out it's spring leaves. Right now all it's energy is going into producing leaves, flowers and new branches.

    You want to take your cuttings from new first year branches that have stopped growing and putting out leaves. Taking cuttings from branches that have gone to wood won't root. This is true of just about ANY woody plant.

    Protect the cuttings from any sun and wind to prevent dessication. You need to set up an automatic misting system. Until the cuttings form roots this is the only way the cuttings can get moisture (through the leaves). An alternate to misting is to tent the cuttings in plastic, but this isn't as good.

    These are general guidelines. Success will depend on your location, seasonal weather, culture, cultivar selection (some are easier than others) and such. I'm also doing my best to propagate cuttings and will have my second go at it this year. Last year I almost succeeded with a couple.

    Best of luck!

  4. katsura

    katsura Active Member 10 Years

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    Novato, California
    Before I started this thread the other day, I neglected to search for an
    earlier like thread. I would refer viewers to an identical thread by michelle
    dated 5/24/2004 of which there have been 2989 views as of my posting
    this message and 21 replies the last of which was 11/25/2005. I have
    tonight read all the posts in that thread and found them most helpful.
  5. mr.shep

    mr.shep Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    San Joaquin Valley, California
    I think if people are really serious about learning
    propagation techniques for Maples that they should
    consider joining the highly regarded International
    Plant Propagators Society.

    The problem I have with telling people about cutting
    grown Maples and how to take and prepare cuttings
    is how will the information will be used?

    The other side of the equation is that people expect
    something for nothing for their own personal gain.
    We have people now that have had Maples for less
    than five years that want to sell some of their plants
    as part of their thinking that they can reclaim some
    of the money they have spent on Maples. What
    started out as a fondness for a particular plant has
    evolved into a how can I offset what I have spent
    on my investment? That is fine and dandy but when
    those same people do not know what they have for
    Maples now and want to propagate them so they
    can try to sell them, then some of us have a decision
    to make as to whether we will help them or not. I
    for one cannot be a part of this process as all I see
    myself doing is perpetuating and helping out a smoke
    and mirror charade that began elsewhere with the
    names of these Maples. This absurd trend will
    continue on until enough people know something
    about their plants to question what they have and
    later know enough about their plant to question the
    people that sold them their plants.

    Most of our Yatsubusa forms for many years, in
    this case Yatsubusa refers to all of the dwarf forms
    of Japanese Maples, were propagated from cuttings.
    They were not grafted at all until some people had
    what they felt were a few dwarfing rootstocks as
    when we grafted these plants onto just any rootstock
    they lost their shapes, lost their leaf sizes and along
    with the prevalent sentiment among some of us old
    folks, the plants lost their character.

    The people that worked on developing dwarfing
    rootstocks for Japanese Maples, even one form
    of another Maple that was real good for the dwarf
    forms of Trident Maples arent going to give that
    information away to just anyone. That is in-house,
    trade secret information that money cannot buy and
    people today just have not shown they are deserving
    yet to know any of that stuff. It may be perceived
    as being unfortunate but the bottom line is that some
    people will yield to the old Japanese sensei philosophy
    in that it is the master of the art form that decides who
    will be taught to watch and learn from as the old guard
    had to learn things and who will not be shown or told
    anything. It is the people that abuse what we tell them
    are the ones that ruin things for everyone else. With
    some subjects regarding Japanese Maples it may be
    better for some of us just to go down with the ship,
    rather than tell what we know. I am not going to
    divulge specifics on what I learned from the likes of
    Toichi Domoto and Koto Matsubara regarding their
    techniques for bonsai plants and for growing Maples
    on their own roots. I know how long it took for
    them to even say a word to me. I had a little proving
    to do before they would even say hello to me, even
    when I was accompanied by Don Kleim.

  6. graftedmaplecollector

    graftedmaplecollector Active Member 10 Years

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    I personally have no monetary aspirations...I just come here to learn
    about my new hobby. A shame info is like pulling teeth here.
    It seems like people would rather please themselves knowing that they know
    something others do not... rather than share information that might
    help the hobby as a whole. I sometimes wonder the point of the "forum" at all.
    The name game is also pointless..if you know what a maple is or isn't tell us.
    Otherwise the propagation of wrong cultivars will continue for sure... if I know I have
    an ever red rather than a garnet I would love to know this. I don't want to spread
    misinformation around, and I don't want to grow trees I think are something else.
  7. mjh1676

    mjh1676 Active Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    Southern Oregon
    I am not sure if you should take what jim says personally or not, but the fact that you do highlights the issue at-hand.

    Whether it is to our liking or not, we (I believe) should have respect for the knowledge that others have, people that have devoted their entire lives to plants, and be willing to "earn" that knowledge, individually or as a community. Unfortunately, it takes patience.

    The problem here is that we are not the only ones viewing the forum--we may participate, but many more "view" it by looking in--people we will never hear from, maybe some who could or should contribute, but don't. It is one thing for me, a young collector, to help you with your cuttings, but it is entirely another for you to ask someone to divulge the secrets of an "art form," a lifetime of work, just because you want to know.

    There is no need to argue this further, but we all should be careful about how and what we say when we are asking for help. Be realisitc. Don't you think a mostly unknown secrect about how to more sucessfully root maple cuttings and dwarfing rootstock for the yatsubusa maples is something to keep to yourself. What if you learned the information in confidence and through hard work--would you just give it to the entire maple communtiy because they asked?

    I have been a regular participant in this forum and have regularly offered what I know, right or wrong, but when people start expecting it and are willing to act out and say they are entitled to it--I have to second guess myself. The ID of a tree is quite different in many ways than what jim is discussing.

    I don't like these discussions much myself, but sometimes you just have to have them. Why do you think information here is like pulling teeth? This forum is loaded with information. So much so, that I often have a hard time sorting it out. Most of what is here is not in the books--isn't that a sign of the giving nature of this forum. Do you have any idea the time involved in constant participation in this forum, in trying to provide accurate information and ask thoughtful questions? Additional time answering email and the other aspects of collecting. I do it because I love the plants and the hobby and if for one second, I felt that what I was doing was not best for the plants, I would undo what I had started. I hope you realize that your comments, while directed at Jim, are directed at all of us.

    Good Luck.
  8. Idacer

    Idacer Active Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    Southern Idaho

    I'm surprised it took you so long to weigh in. You're usually much more prompt in your defense.

    One can only ponder why this is true. Historical posts suggest that this forum has been replete with very knowlegable participants in the past. Most do not seem to last long.

    A forum is supposed to be a place where ideas and information are freely exchanged for the betterment of a community -- not a place where a few can dominate and control. If someone wishes to contribute, they should contribute. If not, they should not. Taunting and belittling is bad form.

  9. mr.shep

    mr.shep Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    San Joaquin Valley, California
    All I did was state why I will not discuss the ins and outs
    of propagating Maples by cuttings. Perhaps someone will
    fee free to open up and tell others in the forum about it but
    I tend to doubt it will happen. After all, some people's good
    buddies in another Maple forum tend to feel that all cutting
    grown Maples die anyway, so why even bother to consider
    them as an option. Maybe if I leave this forum alone people's
    good friends will register in this forum and the people that
    used to make knowledgeable posts will come back in and
    can be more magnanimous to everyone, be more educational
    and become more helpful than I have been. Sounds like a plan.
    Hope it works out.

  10. mjh1676

    mjh1676 Active Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    Southern Oregon

    Sorry I couldn't respond sooner. My job precludes my spending most of the day lurking about about waiting for someone to taunt and belittle. I just do this in my free time for fun.

    Aren't these threads always fun. I will be honest with you--I spend enough time in this forum, contributing constructively, that when someone like Graftedmaplecollector steps out of line, I am not afraid to post how I feel about blatant disrespect. I am sorry if you feel that is what "free exchange" and "community" is all about. I am not surprised you came in after me as I am surprised it took you so long also.

    I don't know exactly what you think I am defending, but I can assure you that I no more appreciate your repeat and persistent tanutings than you appreicate my honestly about the importance about what goes on here.

    Give me a break. Maybe it is time that someone close down this thread. Katsura, Layne and Jim are good people who have respect for eachother and maples--mabye we can leave you here with your "community" to colllaborate in peace and we can communicate outside the forum.

    Do you really think that people don't use this forum because they are scared they will be flamed or taunted? That they "did not last long" because they did not enjoy the experience or that their feelings were hurt. No way. They don't contribute here because they don't want to share what they know, don't have the time, or it is not important to them. They come here to get an answer or learn something immediately important to them and they dissapear. Some people just don't have the time to spend. Eliminating conflict here will do nothing for the forum--just leave it empty and quiet. Every forum has a hierarchy of members, some know more than others--that is how things work. Everyone is not equal in their knowledge--otherwise no one would visit and ask questions. People grow within the group through constant contribution--not demanding information they do not deserve.

    Your propensity has always been to defend the forum--mine the plants and those that care about them. I have never been able to understand what your battle is as you do not understand mine--I can assure you it is not dominance and control.

    Good luck with your maples.
  11. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
    One of my philosophies with the forums is "Take a penny, leave a penny."

    Jim has left a lot of pennies and taken only a few here and there. I know he holds many, many more. As much as I'd like for him to leave more pennies (and I would), I can't compel him to do so - they are his pennies, after all.

    I do agree with the statement, "A forum is supposed to be a place where ideas and information are freely exchanged for the betterment of a community" - but it does need to be dissected a bit:

    - Exchanged implies a trade (taking a penny, leaving a penny). Rhetorically, what does it mean when an imbalance exists (either way)?

    - --> supposed to be <-- implies an ideal - and while I agree with the pursuit of the ideal, I am inclined to believe that the reward is in the pursuit, i.e., constructing a place where we, all of us, can continually approach that unachievable ideal.

    As for the general direction of this thread, I'll only add this:

    All of us are imperfect, and the lack of visual cues and voice intonations in a written medium can sometimes amplify those imperfections. A corollary is that what is written is not the person.
  12. Gomero

    Gomero Well-Known Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    Southwest France
    What I really like in this forum is that we politely focus on Maples, some giving more pennies than otyhers as Daniel points out, but without getting personal. I hope it remains like so.

    Concerning the subject of the thread, I have no personal experience growing maples from cuttings. However last year, at one of those specialist plant fairs, I met a professional grower from Brittany who had a good A. palmatum selection and claimed all of them had been grown from cuttings. A quick inspection did not show any traces of grafts and to me they looked healthy. I asked him his method but he declined saying that it took him a while before it worked and now he was not giving it away like that. Hmm.
    On the other hand the most renowned European growers do not think much of the quality and strength of Japanese maples grown from cuttings.

    Well, this is my penny of the day.

    Kind regards,
  13. yweride

    yweride Active Member 10 Years

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    Portland, Oregon
    Nicely put graftedmaplecollector, you hit the nail on the head. Some people might also say get off your soapbox!
  14. oscar

    oscar Active Member

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    Surrey, England
    In answer to graftedmaplecollectors question, there is probably a good reason why most maples are grafted, Nurserymen spend a lot of time trying to find the most cost effective way of producing large numbers of plants (healthy plants that will live a long time) seed and cuttings are probably the most widely used method, so if maples were easy and reliable from cutting, you can bet we would use this method. As far as i'm aware cutting raised maples are weaker than grafted plants.....feel free to have a bash, bench warming cables and a misting unit will give you the best success rate, July might be a good time to try. If you are considering selling some plants, be sure and explain the propagation method used and advise any potential recipient that the plants are grown on their own roots and there is a risk of the plant failing. Alternatively why not try some grafting.
  15. mjh1676

    mjh1676 Active Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    Southern Oregon

    I think the other possibility might be to:

    Use your above outlined process, do some reasearch on a good soil or non-soil medium and be patient. One might also pick a variety that is easy to root to begin trials with. I think it is terribly unfair to put "producing large numbers of maples" and cuttings in the same sentence, especially for a beginner. The same applies for the fundamental desire to "sell" maples, as the cutting-grown maple does not lend itself to providing a vehicle for "fast money."

    There is nothing inferior about a cutting-grown maple in most case. Actually, your process is probably ideal as a starting point, although I would suggest taking cuttings a bit earlier. What is inferior or what lacks refinement is the process one uses to produce the plant and the lack of adaptation one exhibits in the quest to be able to sustain the plant propagated by cuttings.

    I will agree that there is very little practical about trying to grow maples from cuttings---I suppose that is why Jim referred to it as an "art form." I will also suggest that any beginner can graft a maple and any nursery that wants to graft maples can do so--a graft doesn't have to be artful--it can be quite ugly and poor and sustain the plant long enough to sell. We can also see beautiful well-crafted grafts that take much more time to complete and will sustain the maple much longer.

    Then there is the issue of how easy it is to take a dirty, disease-ridden, piece of scion wood and put it on a dirty understock and the maple will still be saleable--take that same piece of scion wood and try to turn into a cutting-grown plant--one may not be so lucky.

    I am not being combative here, but it just boggles my mind why everyone bashes cuttings when they don't even know why they are doing it. The reasoning is wrong--because something is more difficult and takes study time and preparation does not make it inferior. The same applies to me buying variety X maple from my favorite seller and when it dies two months later I say the variety is hard to grow and fussy. Maybe the plants was diseased, maybe the graft was bad--it has nothing to do with the variety itself, just that particular plant.

    Because one is not successful with cuttings and sees them die when sold to customers says nothing about the cutting-grown plant. It simply says that the process used to produce the plant and the age and care of the plant while in the growers care made it and inappropriate item for sale. It is always easier to blame the plant than the person growing it.

    Some maples root easily, some hard, but in the end, if propagted correctly and cared for carefully, a cutting-grown maples will easily be as good as a grafted plant--it just takes longer.
  16. mr.shep

    mr.shep Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    San Joaquin Valley, California
    It seems like people would rather please themselves
    knowing that they know something others do not...
    rather than share information that might help the
    hobby as a whole.

    Much of what you' know about Maples now I had a hand
    in and boy some of you have made me regret it. Several
    of the Maples many of you have now in this forum I also
    had a hand in. Do you really want me to go down through
    the list of which Maples I personally brought into Oregon
    as new introductions for them for propagators there to take
    our cutting grown Maples and graft them onto their inferior
    rootstock and then later see what happened to their Maples?
    How many lived, how many died right on the propagation
    tables, how many did not last up to 15 years of age and that
    was back in the 80's. For all of the grafted Maples that
    Oregon has propagated where are they now in the Oregon
    landscapes? How many Japanese Maples can you count
    in the ground away from the nursery or away from the
    growing grounds in Oregon?

    Who gives a damn about the hobby, that is the job of the
    person that sold you your Maple to help with. It is my
    job to train the Master Gardeners that many of you have
    to gone to in this state prior to having a forum like this
    so you can ask most any question you want and then make
    the person that helped you either feel lousy or made to
    feel guilty about trying to give advice that you did not
    appreciate or later acted like you did not want in the
    first place, just to later read we did not help enough.

    I find it real interesting that someone that can complain
    about lack of help was not shy about sending me more
    than one personal message in the past asking for help
    and advice. Nice to know that was completely forgotten,
    (what have you done for me today is that it?) as it must
    have been expected me of to help someone that could
    have asked for help in this forum yet chose to ask me
    directly instead and then make waves that a person must
    like keeping the answers to themselves.

    The people of Europe had better remember one thing
    that I am not the only person that knows who they got
    several of their Maples from and when they got those
    Maples. They can lie and carry on to you and get away
    with it because you do not know any better but they
    cannot do that to me, which makes me a threat to them.
    Besides, if we open our eyes wide enough we can clearly
    see that Esveld and Westonbirt among others still have
    several of their cutting grown Maples that they got from
    people here in the US, from Sir Harold Hillier in England
    and from some people in Japan. Inferior quality huh, not
    as good as grafted Maples? Funny thing that what your
    mentors have neglected to tell you is that the majority
    of Maple cultivars will live longer on their own roots
    than they will by being grafted. There are not many of
    you that have given plants to arboretum or a botanical
    garden in which the first priority for Maples and even
    Magnolias was that they were on their own roots before
    they could be given away. Even those entities expected
    someone else to help them even when giving them the
    plant. It was not until the middle to late 80's, that several
    of the arboretums and select botanical gardens around here
    would accept a gratis tree that was grafted. Didn't know
    that did you?

    Later gator,

  17. Weekend Gardener

    Weekend Gardener Active Member 10 Years

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    Coquitlam, BC
    I have been participating in garden related forums for the better of the last 10 years. Is this "hijacking" of a seemingly innocent question, which amounts to "how can I best propagate maples from cuttings" a common occurrence on this forum? I must say I am a little perturbed.

    I have difficulty fathoming how a question like that can draw so much heat. I conclude that I must be missing a massive chunk of historical perspective to this issue. But won't that deter other people from asking advice of a similar nature on this forum? Perhaps, that is the intention of some of us.
  18. mr.shep

    mr.shep Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    San Joaquin Valley, California
    There is historical significance to the Maples on
    their own roots. People chose not to research into
    how our primitive forms arrived to us and why
    those cultivars were grafted later instead of more
    cuttings taken. I've addressed that issue in other
    threads in this forum. I suggest you do a little
    homework in this Maple forum before adding to
    this subject blind. I never said I would not help
    people with cutting grown plants as we can see
    where I have helped in another UBC BG forum.
    After all I did give people a powerful means, the
    best in the business, to look into this subject in
    depth if need be and then with a little effort some
    people can start to propagate their Maples by
    cuttings if they so choose.

    The two areas of concern for me is that we have
    spies from nurseries looking into this forum that
    will take the free information we gave them and
    can utilize this information not for the plants gain
    but more so to illicit a fraud that some of them
    have openly participated in all because they chose
    to bend the history of some of these plants to make
    themselves look good to their associates with the
    sole intention to help pad their pocketbooks. Even
    if it means renaming an old already named Maple
    that had been in the nursery trade for some time.
    This has been done. It is these kinds of shenanigans
    is what gives rise to DNA analysis being our savior
    for their future but it may be too late for Maples. The
    other concern that I have is that for me to help others
    whose sole intention is to sell these plants, not simply
    provide a better and perhaps healthier plant for others
    or to have back ups in place for when they lose their
    stock plant, then why should I help others whose sole
    intention is to raid what we tell them so they can pursue
    a means to sell Maples that are already misnamed?
    Let me remind you with a segment of the previous post
    in that some of these misnamed Maple were not that way
    when I was asked to bring them up into Oregon and
    elsewhere to be propagated and sold. The bitter pill
    to swallow is seeing for myself what has happened to
    these plants and the names of them years later. If this
    forum was confined to just members of this forum,
    the information not to be viewed by others online
    that are not members, I would be more open to help
    with the Maples on their own roots issue. Aside from
    the fact that others in this forum have asked me for
    advice in how to take cuttings, how to layer and air
    layer Maples, if someone that is not a member wants
    to know that information and they have designs of
    quick selling these plants in an online auction format
    then the online auction host can "grease" me to help
    those sellers that in turn benefits them.

    I've not ever once put down people for grafting Maples,
    I've been around it and done it for years myself. As
    someone that was involved in the nursery business
    and as someone that is still in a position to monitor
    bona fide nurseries on the state level I can understand
    why they chose to graft these plants and will back
    them all the way. In the case of cutting grown Maples
    that have their own limitations that propagating by
    grafting does not have but we do get a plant that has
    the ability to live longer than most to all grafted plants
    and have proven through history that they will. I've
    addressed that issue in this forum as well.

    What I will not accept is someone that has not done it
    or has not been around these plants telling me how to
    conduct my business. I came into this forum with the
    premise with about my first post in this forum of helping
    people fill in the blanks for these plants. Offering to
    give some insight on cultivars that I am well versed with.
    In some cases I may be the closest thing to an authority on
    these cultivars just to be shined on, laughed at, made fun of,
    told I was wrong when I was not wrong in this forum just
    to see "kids" act out with plants that originated from Don
    Kleim, referred to a book author in which many of his
    plants were given to him by Don Kleim and then to see
    others use Maples as a crutch, whom did not care one bit
    about the plant itself and still don't. I've offered to help
    and will continue to help people in Maples but I will pick
    and choose who those people will be from now on. So with
    that in mind unless I know the person and like the person
    do not send me a private message again regarding Maples.
    I'll just delete it unless referred by someone that I do know,
    like and either currently do or can respect.

    Last edited: Feb 18, 2006
  19. oscar

    oscar Active Member

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    Surrey, England
    Hey mjh,
    just to clear this up, i was not saying, anyway to produce vast numbers of plants is the best way......however mass production of any product means cheaper prices, you would not believe the number of people who come into my nursery and say thats expensive, why does that cost so much.......sometimes i feel like giving up. There are very few people who appreciate the work that goes into creating (notice how i said creating, not producing) a healthy, vigorous plant that will live a long time.
    I can see mr sheps point of view, nothing irritates me more than the nurseries who take a plant, repackage, rebrand, in effect, hoodwink the general public into thinking they are getting something new, shame on them.
    Back to my earlier post, i was only trying to encourage people to have a try, cuttings or grafting, horticulture can be one of the most rewarding hobbies/ for making fast money, forget it, very few of the people i know in this business make lots of money.
    and thanks also mr shep for the edification on the cutting raised maples out living the grafted.
  20. Scion Swapper

    Scion Swapper Active Member

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    New Jersey, USA
    I didn't want to post in this thread, but there is one point I'd like to make. Mr Shep and I are one completely opposite sides of the spectrum with regard to the graft vs. cutting issue for Japanese Maples, and we've argued it in the past and (hopefully) respectfully decided to agree to disagree.

    The one issue you brought up Mr Shep that I did want to address was as follows (your quote):

    "How many lived, how many died right on the propagation
    tables, how many did not last up to 15 years of age and that
    was back in the 80's. For all of the grafted Maples that
    Oregon has propagated where are they now in the Oregon
    landscapes? How many Japanese Maples can you count
    in the ground away from the nursery or away from the
    growing grounds in Oregon?"

    Oregon, and I believe other areas in the Northwest, have a real problem with field grown Acer palmatum. Pseudomonas. Most east coast nurseries have all but giving up on buying field grown Acer palmatums from the PNW. It doesn't matter if its a seedling, graft, or cutting, when brought to other areas of the country, a large percentage of Acer palmatums die within two years. I don't know the real reason behind it, perhaps its the "stretched" tissues which result from the longer growing season make the plants more succeptable to the disease. Perhaps its due to seed sources, with PNW seed source being more succeptable to the disease. Finally, maybe its just in their soils. We've taken major losses in palmatums due to pseudomonas disease. We've never seen the disease in east coast grown seedlings, or from seedlings purchased from the Southeast. We actually haven't had disease problems with greenhouse grown Acer palmatums from the PNW either.

    Just last summer, another local nurseryman received several thousand bareroot field-grown A.p. seedlings from Oregon. Within weeks, the tell tail black smudges of pseudomonas began showing up on the trunks. Several weeks later, the local Ag Agent quarentined and burned the entire crop.

    If we ever see pseudomonas smudge on any maples in our houses, we immediately remove the effected crop. No longer an issue though since we no longer buy any PNW acers. Again, this problem is more of a soil issue, and I don't think container grown A.p. suffer this same problem.

    I know this is a little off topic, but I think it plays in to your questioning why Oregon grown maples die. Perhaps the reason has nothing at all to do with graft/cutting, but more to do with soil/growing conditions/pseudomonas.

  21. mr.shep

    mr.shep Well-Known Member 10 Years

    Likes Received:
    San Joaquin Valley, California

    I think if you read through some of the older threads you
    will read that we worked on vigorous rootstock for grafting.
    Some of the original plants from Japan needed some help
    with vigor such as Shigitatsu sawa and Aka shigitatsu
    sawa which only would last about 15 years each on their
    own roots due to Verticillium in the plant. The only way
    to help the plant along was to graft it onto clean and
    vigorous rootstock. I mentioned above that Don had
    his own dwarfing rootstock to once again be able to graft
    his many dwarf forms onto as it took too long to get some
    of these plants to develop an adequate root system on their
    own. It was Koto Matsubara that was magical with the
    Yatsubusas and his only trouble plant for getting roots was
    Koto ito komachi. I even helped with a variegated rootstock
    to help increase variegation in our scions for grafting so I
    never said that grafting does not have its purpose or was
    not integral in helping some of these Maples. It is just that
    for some plants it was better to leave them on their own roots.
    Dissectums, aside from Seiryu, are real tough to generate their
    own roots so the ones we had that did not come from Japan
    had to be grafted soon after we got them in. J.D. grafted his
    plants because he did not know how to take cuttings and get
    roots to set for him. Which is why he had Art Wright do much
    of that work for him. So much so when Elmore writes about
    getting a Maple on its own roots from Art, I believe him.

    As far as the death rate in Oregon back in the 80's, not
    the present, this was mostly due to graft incompatibilities
    when people grafted all of their forms onto just any old
    green seedling and thought that the graft would take and
    many did not. The quick decline form of Verticillium
    originally came from the soil but there was another form
    of Verticillium already in the plants that came in from
    Japan but this is not the lethal form but is more of a
    disruptive, long term enemy to the plant when it gets
    stressed, form instead. As far as why large five and
    fifteen gallon Maples died out in the landscape, this was
    more so due to Tight Bark which can be either passed
    from seed or can also be transmitted from the scion.
    The form of Pseudonomas very much like bacterial
    canker in Stone Fruits is passed from scion parent to
    the offspring. Cuttings are unaffected by this form
    of Pseudonomas but can have Tight Bark if the parent
    plant we took cuttings from has it in its system. What
    is decimating the Maples in the landscapes for the last
    15 years or so in Oregon more than anything is Tight
    Bark. Also, there is a blast form of phytophthora that
    has created havoc with the dwarf forms since 1990 in
    Oregon. Wiped out whole batches of dwarfs in some
    years. Started along the coast of Oregon and moved
    inland and still can cause trouble in some years. The
    water mold form of phytophthora is generally seen in
    the greenhouse but can also be seen in containers when
    too much Oregon soil has been used in the soil medium.
    As case in point: we found that Dogwood Blight was
    harbored in the heavy Oregon clay soils which is why
    we later on broke every root ball that came into the
    nursery from a B&B plant from Oregon, changed the
    soil soon after they came in and grew these plants on.
    The only B&B plants we never did have to break the
    rootballs were from Eby in Wilsonville.

    Cuttings has its advantages for the dwarf and semi-dwarf
    forms but it can take a long time to get them to set roots.
    Grafting over the years has cleaned up some of the hard
    to grow, historically hard to keep alive Maples, so it
    depends on what we want for most palmatum forms as
    the plants will live longer if they are on their own roots
    but not everyone will want to wait that 2-3 extra years
    to get them up to size to sell. It is the sale size and how
    long it takes is why some nurseries have not tried to grow
    cuttings but instead fall back on their mainstream method
    of propagation. Don Kleim was years ahead of his time
    for selecting out rootstocks for vigor, for adding in more
    variegation and for dwarfing. Who today has any of those?

  22. mjh1676

    mjh1676 Active Member Maple Society 10 Years

    Likes Received:
    Southern Oregon

    Pseudomonas is alive and well here in Oregon and we find it in more now in container-grown plants than we do in field-grown plants. The growers that are getting their maples into the ground sooner seem to have better longevity. I personally like the containerized plants from the fields and not the B&B plants. All of the B&B plants I have owned, with the exception of a couple have showed signs of pseudomonas within 2 years of planting.

    I am seeing tons of smudging and blackening of bark in green houses on very young containerized maples. I get the feeling that much of this is coming from the rootstocks being used and grown anywhere north of southern Oregon. The other thing that Jim mentioned is a resurgence of graft incompatibilities. Even 5 years ago, I did not see nearly as many as I am seeing now and they are coming from all up and down the west coast.

    You know as well as I do, that while there is a nucleus of growers in the east that produce grafted maples, many of the maples from Oregon, Washington state, and California, taverse the country to be resold. Maples from Oregon go to retailers in California to resold back to people in Oregon from online sellers. The fact is that many people will not tell you where the maple you are buying comes from as that is part of the charade.

    Tight bark is universal and plays into the overall state of maples--that being the overall health of the plant. Whether it is grafted or cutting-grown, we have to know how to grow the darn plants. I have talked more than one time about root systems--and what I am seeing often times, is lack of attention to this issue. People seem most concerned about the top part of the plant these days at the cost of the overally health and longevity. I think that we would serve our plants and customers well if we considered more deeply, how to grow a clean maple. Clean up the rootstocks, select healthy scion wood, use clean soil mixes, and quit pushing the top-growth so much just to get a plant permaturely up to size.

    In that regard, the fate of our maples still lies with the collector--whether he be a hobbiest or a Specialty nurseryman. When the day comes that I don't have to dump the maples I get and strip them of the growers soil, for soil of my own, the instant I get them, then things will be looking up.
  23. Micheal and Jim,

    Years ago, the late Jack Blauw, an active early member of the IPPS and a local skilled propagator and grower here on the east coast, warned my family about incompatabilities between east coast scion wood (thight cell structure) and west coast understocks (stretched cell structure). Perhaps there is something to that and the incompatabilites which can arise during the first year of growth. The pseudomonas problem is really devistating for Oregon growers. We actually are no longer even using container grown understocks from the PNW. Rather, we are either growing our own or purchasing from the Southeast or midwest.

  24. graftedmaplecollector

    graftedmaplecollector Active Member 10 Years

    Likes Received:
    I'm sorry if some of you found my post offensive, I was feeling more digusted than accusatory and no I wasn't singling jim out, he's not the only poster here right??
    I mean why be upset? I have only lost about twenty something maples in the last two
    years for various reasons. Dirty stock, misnamed cultivars, and lack of knowledge about
    various maples(tolerance and whatnot). So what's the solution? Like many other things I do, I decide to visit an internet discussion board to learn about my new hobby. I've done it before you see, I'm also an aquarist and raise rare and large cichlids. However, over and over again there are more smoke and mirrors than answers. What do you do to prove yourself? Maybe I should flail myself like the flagellants and post the pics to prove my
    determination. No personal attacks were intended, and I find it sad to be called out like I have been, but then I guess that the board politics right? Who gets to be the best friend with the guy who holds all the cards right? Yes, I have asked jim questions via PM, and maybe I shouldn't have done that, but be clear nothing I have learned that way or from the board has stopped me from losing trees, and after reading and sometimes posting since oct 04 I have learned very little about japanese maples at all.
    I came to learn, I have no interest in the ego massage.
  25. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

    Likes Received:
    Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
    Sounds like you're very frustrated (and with not being able to prevent the loss of your maples, understandably so!). Unfortunately, I'm far, far from equipped to being able to help on maple issues.

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