Layering Produces Rooted Plants

If the rose bush isn’t pliant, you can AIR LAYER. This time, just below a node, cut into the “bark” skinning off about a third of an inch. (The branch will still be able to remain upright.) Wrap the area with soaked sphagnum moss (wear gloves), to form a nice fat “ball” approximately 2 inches in diameter, and three inches up and down. Be certain that the moss is soaking wet.

Now, wrap the ball of moss securely with plastic wrap, going around 3 or 4 times, so that it will be airtight. Tie it at the top and bottom. The moss MUST stay wet, in order for roots to form. Check it periodically, and if it looks dry, open the top, and add water, re-tying securely. If roots don’t form, but the cut forms callus, you can cut the cane below the callus, and treat it like any cutting — but this one will be more likely to root. Some gardeners like to add a layer of Aluminum foil, to be sure no air gets in.

When roots have formed, cut the new little plant off, and re-cut the remaining cane just above a
bud eye.

From “Old Roser’s Digest,” Miriam Wilkins, September 2002