For the past couple of years my propagating fingers have had the black death and the majority of my cuttings didn’t make it. This year my self respect has been restored by callousing them first. I used no hormone rooting material as I suspected that was old or contaminated. I wrapped the cuttings in newspaper, wet them under the kitchen tap, left overnight to drip in the dish drainer, and they were just perfect the next morning – only just damp. Wrapped in two layers of plastic wrap and made sure they were standing upright (not upside-down!) for four to five weeks. Mostly there was excellent callousing. I potted them individually, and they were placed on the shady side of the house for a month. Then placed under the eaves on the sunny side of the house. This protected them from the winter rains and hail. Yesterday I moved the pots to the open to start coping with life and this is the view from my study window. It is all back to normal again and my mood is as sunny as the daffodils. Here are my successes this year:“Camnethan Cherry Red” 3; ‘Henri Martin 2; ‘Marquise de Vivens’ (oh hooray) 1; ‘Rhodologue Jules Gravereaux’ 3; ‘Rosenelfe’ 2; ‘Will Scarlet’ 1; ‘Betty Prior’ 3; ‘General Gallieni’ 3; ‘Gloire des Rosomanes’ 2; ‘Hawlmark Crimson’ (double hooray) 1; “Kombacy Elyena” 2; ‘Lamarque’ 5; “Lewes Kell” 3; ‘Mrs. Bryce Allen’ (ray, ray) 2; “Mrs. Frances Pickles” (how many years have I been trying to get a second one going!) 1; ‘Petite de somethingorother ?Hollande’ 2; ‘Souvenir de Claudius Pernet’ 1; “Sylvia Hannah’s” 2; and ‘Yolande d’Aragon’ 3;
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