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Hardening off root cuttings

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Hey TF. I have root cuttings of Drosera graomogolensis and Drosera binata "Dwarf Red" that have struck really well. The largest of the D. graomogolensis have 4-5 leaves now. The binata roots were sown later, but are striking robustly and many leaves have fully unfurled. When is it safe to start hardening these off?

Thanks!
 
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What do you mean by "hardening off"? Are you currently growing them in higher humidity or lower light that they would need to be hardened off?

I have a graomogolensis but I have never tried cuttings. I am assuming higher humidity would be beneficial for this species. As for the drosera binata I grow my root cuttings in the same conditions as my mature plants and they never fail to strike and grow well.
 

bluemax

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Hey TF. I have root cuttings of Drosera graomogolensis and Drosera binata "Dwarf Red" that have struck really well. The largest of the D. graomogolensis have 4-5 leaves now. The binata roots were sown later, but are striking robustly and many leaves have fully unfurled. When is it safe to start hardening these off?

Thanks!

If you are are propagating them in water, cwatson, are you then asking when you can root them in soil that has more normal moisture levels? I guess I am wondering under what conditions your have gotten them to increase because that will determine your next steps. Congratulations, by the way. :)
 
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They are both grown in covered containers in wet moss. This feels like a silly question, but is the root they sprout from their first root? I have been thinking of them like leaf cuttings, and waiting for hem to establish a root system. This is my first time doing root cuttings.
 

curtisconners

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As far as I know, root cuttings are tougher than leaf cuttings. But they might still need to be acclimated to lower humidity. I suppose you could think of the root as their first root. Are you growing them in a terrarium? If your not, I'm not sure if they would even need to be "hardened off" if they've been growing in the dry air of a centrally heated home. I'm no expert on cuttings though, all I've managed to take cuttings of is lucky bamboo.
 
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You can't really consider the root they are growing from as their first root. I don't have a picture, but when I take adelae or binata root cuttings I can clearly see the difference. New roots will start growing from where the new plant connects to the old root. The old root will eventually die off and rot, and you will be left with the plant that is growing its own root system.

As for acclimating the plantlets you can slowly poke holes in the covering and they will slowly adjust. High humidity is preferred to prevent the cutting from drying out, which is a stage you have already passed. As long as the humidity is decreased slowly, the plants will be fine.
 

bluemax

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When the new plantlets look enough like a whole plant, rather than just a sprout, I generally take a small but precise pair of scissors like a cuticle scissors and cut the segment of the original root free on both sides of the plantlet. This will encourage it to produce its own roots. During this phase I maintain all moisture levels only lowering them to an adult plant normal when the new roots have formed. It is worth considering that cutting up the original root might well keep it from producing more new sprouts if you do it too soon. It will bring the plantlets to maturity more quickly if it is not done too early.
 

DragonsEye

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A bit off topic, I admit, but you have me curious ... How big does 'dwarf red' get? Is it smaller in all dimensions or just shorter petioles?
 

Zath

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A bit off topic, I admit, but you have me curious ... How big does 'dwarf red' get? Is it smaller in all dimensions or just shorter petioles?

A bit smaller in every way, as far as I can tell. It can still get a bit lanky under lights, but out in full sun, it's quite compact compared to a typical binata.
 
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Too emphatic, Fred? I should probably add - in my (very) humble opinion.

I would be interested in your experiences, though.

Lol, yes it is a little emphatic. That certainly looked like a definite and you know how I love those.

I would argue that you are removing the plants biggest root. It's still functioning and therefore feeding the plant. Removal is weakening the root system.

You can't really consider the root they are growing from as their first root.

Really? ( When is a root not a root? Apparently, when it's a root :0o:)

You are also recommending that a Newbie completely bareroots a young cutting and starts fiddling in a delicate root system with scissors. Even if the operation is a complete success you have provided at least couple of wounds for bacterial/fungal attack.
Then of course the plant needs to be re-potted. How often do we hear of plants suffering from shock after a Newbie has had a go at re-potting? So the plant not only has a setback for a few weeks but you have diminished its ability to recover by depleting its root system.

Far better, if necessary to separate sprouted cuttings, to remove them carefully with as little root disturbance as possible, ie maintaining the maximum medium in the rootball. The plant will probably suffer zero shock and will still have all its systems intact, as such it should romp away.
 
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I meant the old root won't serve the same functions as the new one since a) it was cut off and b) it is no longer growing so it won't provide any stability. The old root is probably able to absorb some water, but I don't know if absorbs the same as a new one would.

Going back to Fred's point about root disturbance, when I re potted an adelae cutting that had already grown new roots to give to a friend, it suffered severe shock, despite the procedure being done as carefully as possible.
 
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I meant the old root won't serve the same functions as the new one since a) it was cut off and b) it is no longer growing so it won't provide any stability. The old root is probably able to absorb some water, but I don't know if absorbs the same as a new one would..

If the old root is that inefficient where has the new plant come from?

Going back to Fred's point about root disturbance, when I re potted an adelae cutting that had already grown new roots to give to a friend, it suffered severe shock, despite the procedure being done as carefully as possible.

If the D. adelae suffered severe shock I have to question your technique.
 
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The old root has damaged root hairs from its being removed from the original plant, so no it doesn't have the same absorption capacity as a healthy new root would, but it does have enough to keep itself static until a new plant forms, much as in the same way a leaf cutting can osmotically absorb water to keep itself alive (as it's not helping support a whole plant anymore it doesn't need the high absorption capacity, hence why root cuttings are possible). And cutting the root into smaller sections can not only speed up the new plantlet's production of its own proper root system, but it can also encourage the original root to sprout more plantlets, up to the point where it no longer has enough viable tissue to do so. In some ways the cut root acts like a somatic seed, providing nutrients while the new plant grows out and establishes itself.
 
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In some ways the cut root acts like a somatic seed, providing nutrients while the new plant grows out and establishes itself.

Well there you go. I think I already said that too.

Edit: I have a little more time now that I'm back so.....

Question, Does the root lose its hairs because it has been removed from the plant or because of the handling?
It's not just keeping itself static, it is generating a new plant (or more).

I have found that around 1.5" is a good size for root cuttings. I've only ever used the technique on D. regia.

I find it interesting that a root that is behaving like a root ie, supplying sustenamce should suddenly be described as being like a seed.
It's like a bald parent who is sustaining his/her (women can go bald too) offspring using money out of the bank rather than from earnings. The money is just as good no matter where it came from.
A root supplies sustenance to the plant, this damaged one is doing exactly the same only it's drawing the nutrients from a reserve. I see no reason to stop saying it's a root

If it looks like a root, acts like a root, smells like a root it's a ROOT
 
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