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Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

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Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  fireboy on 9/30/2013, 8:06 pm

Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting from an already established vine?
If so, please give me the "how-to". I have been trying for some time now from readings from a gardening website a couple of years ago, of which I can't remember now. But my efforts have been useless!

Any and all help will be appreciated!

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Re: Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  landarch on 9/30/2013, 8:52 pm

yes it is...you should be able to break off sucker stems, stick them in some soil, and keep it watered.

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Re: Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  fireboy on 9/30/2013, 9:03 pm

@landarch wrote:yes it is...you should be able to break off sucker stems, stick them in some soil, and keep it watered.
Thanks landarch
I haven't tried just sucker stems yet, but I will. But, I've tried 25 to 30 times just breaking and cutting off stems and planting them to just placing in water. I did have some luck with growing in water. But when I planted it in soil it died.

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Re: Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  southern gardener on 9/30/2013, 9:14 pm

fireboy...I've had EXCELLENT results just planting the sucker right in my soil. Make sure you are getting a sucker, and not just a leaf. the sucker will grow in the "crotch" of the main stem and a leaf. If you do a search here or google it will show it better. I just stuck a screwdriver in the soil to a depth of about the same length as the sucker, in other words bury the whole sucker and just leave the top of the sucker sticking out of the soil. Water well, and it should take off. Be sure to trim off any side branches, shoots etc of the sucker so only the very top of the sucker has leaves. I also trim off any flowers if there are any, so the plant will put it's energy into growing and not fruiting. I did this with a brandwine plant, and WOW!! Check out my thread on loaded brandywines. That plant is still going!! Good luck

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Re: Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  audrey.jeanne.roberts on 9/30/2013, 9:15 pm

I did it this spring. I picked a long sucker off the plant and decided to grow it so I plopped it in water, put in on a sunny window sill and let it grow a good root system before I transplanted it.

The plant I did this with has taken over my hillside! I never got around to trellising it (cherry tomato) so it's climbing everywhere.

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Re: Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  fireboy on 9/30/2013, 9:33 pm

Thanks landarch, southern gardener and audrey.jeanne.roberts

Looks like the sucker stem is the way to go. Thanks for all your help!

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Re: Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  unit649 on 10/1/2013, 3:41 pm

I have had great success planting large Brandywine Tomato suckers directly in my Mel's Mix.  They wilted back a little but came right back with good watering. 

Here is a pic from right after they were planted on August 12th .


This picture from today shows the suckers growing nicely, with the slightly taller mother Brandywine plants in the back left.

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Re: Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  camprn on 10/1/2013, 5:55 pm

@fireboy wrote:
@landarch wrote:yes it is...you should be able to break off sucker stems, stick them in some soil, and keep it watered.
Thanks landarch
I haven't tried just sucker stems yet, but I will. But, I've tried 25 to 30 times just breaking and cutting off stems and planting them to just placing in water. I did have some luck with growing in water. But when I planted it in soil it died.
you have to make sure it is a true stem and not a leaf. look for little nodes on the stem, these will eventually sprout roots. Leaves do not have the root nodes.

http://gardener.wikia.com/wiki/Tomato_stem_primordia

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Re: Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  plantoid on 10/1/2013, 6:25 pm

This afternoon I took the lid off a composter that had old fully harvested ( cleared out the garden )  tomato vines placed in it a 8 days ago  so I could add more compostable material .

Lo & behold ..... I found several feet of main stem vines covered in zillions of 1/10 "thick  by  thick 3/4 " long roots all ready for cutting into 3 inch lengths and planting out .
 They weren't covered with any thing ,  just running willy-nilly in the dark and moist interior of the lidded compost bin .

 It's a  pity it's nearly winter and it won't be viable , as I've been practicing how to hot water bath preserve toms earlier this today .

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Re: Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  sanderson on 10/1/2013, 9:47 pm

Camp, That's a nice photo of what to look for. Should help all Newbies.

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Re: Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  Triciasgarden on 10/2/2013, 12:16 pm

Fireboy after you got roots growing on your stem while it was in water, is there a chance you didn't harden off your plant by exposing it to increasing sunlight for several days before you exposed it to full sunlight?  If it didn't get hardened off, that may be a reason your plant didn't make it.  You do still need to go with a stem and not a leaf as has been mentioned above.

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tomatoes

Post  2SooCrew on 10/3/2013, 11:38 am

SFG book pg. 159

"No matter how large the sucker or side branch, you can stand it in a glass of water and transplant that into the ground as soon as the roots sprout. Or, you can stick those suckers in a cup of vermiculite, and keep that in a saucer of water, and they will also sprout roots.  They are great, free plants for a late rharverst for canning, juice, or preserving."

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Re: Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  Triciasgarden on 10/3/2013, 4:46 pm

Oh Plantoid it sure figures that they produce roots right before winter!  That's too bad!

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Re: Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  plantoid on 12/3/2013, 1:23 pm

This is the tiny cutting I managed to take off the tomato vines before the DVT episode hit me.
 I know it's not what was supposed to be the intended cutting ,which was three inches long but by the time I came out of hospital a sharp frost had zapped it.

So I had to be satisfied with the tiniest of cuttings about 1 & 1/4 inch long with five leaves on it, taken from low on the stem which was protected by weeds.  Even this tiny cutting  has had a hard life .. a few days ago I spent almost 24 hrs. back in emergency admissions . In the upset of normal life   Alison forgot to take the cutting off the window sill .

It got a tad too cool so it died yet again Embarassed Rolling Eyes  .

Today I've given it first aid  yet again  in the form of an egg cup with a ladies makeup pad remover soaked in room temp water .

The aim of the original experiment was to take a cutting off a plant that gave me the best beefsteak tomatoes and try and keep it growing over winter till the middle of May 2014 and then pot it up ready for growing on in the green house . If it became too big a cutting I was going to take several new cuttings off the original cutting.
 
If this one survives I think I'll have to call it " Lucky"Laughing 

 I'll keep you all informed about it's fight for survival... So folks  don't miss the next weeks  thrilling instalment of " Lucky's survival at Plantoids . Wink 

 

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Re: Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  sanderson on 12/3/2013, 1:49 pm

Plantoid,  Only a gardener would  . .  .  nurse a teeny cutting in an egg cup!

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Re: Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  camprn on 12/3/2013, 1:54 pm

@plantoid wrote:This is the tiny cutting I managed to take off the tomato vines before the DVT episode hit me.
What is DVT?

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Re: Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  plantoid on 12/3/2013, 4:03 pm

Deep vein thrombosis ... the start of blood clots developing in the veins deep in your muscles ..in my case both legs from ankles up to my upper groin, biggest block in both groins  (Rolling Eyes  a wee bit  painful) , caused by diabetes and inactivity due to disabilities

Twas a bit of a close call for if a clot had broke free and gone to my lungs I'd have been in serious trouble.
Or 
 If they had got much bigger I'd have lost blood circulation ikn my legs  and like as not  developed ulcers or gangrene.

 
 Things are a bit more saner now as I'm eating prescribed Warfarin tablets ( rat poison ) that stops the blood clotting anymore than needed . Mean while very gentle exercise  and my bodies natural defences should see the clots dissolve over the next 2 & 1/2 months  of medication.

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Re: Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  Pollinator on 12/3/2013, 9:30 pm

Glad you are better, Plantoid!

Some tips on taking cuttings from tomatoes:

1. It's important to get a clean cut with a very sharp knife or razor. I think it also helps to get it on the diagonal.

2. Don't let the cutting dry out, even for a few minutes. Water is moving upward through the circulation of the stem. If air is pulled in to the cut area, then it will prevent any further water from coming up the stem, even if you put them in water at that point. So make your cutting, and immediately put in water. If you can't do that within 30 seconds, then when you do put it in water, make a fresh cut an inch or so above the original cut. Hopefully the air will not have moved above that point.

3. You can purchase rooting hormone (expensive), or you can make your own, by soaking some willow twigs in water overnight. Bruise or nick them in a number of places so the plant juices will diffuse into the water. Then use that water to put your cuttings into for 24 hours.

4. After they've soaked up some rooting hormone, place them in some vermiculite or sand that is kept moist.

Sometimes, no matter what you do, it fails. But most times they will root readily. Failure is usually due to mold in the area of the cut end.

I have about 20 rooted cuttings in my greenhouse right now, hoping to keep them going to maybe get some fresh 'maters in the dead of winter, or at least by early spring. A few have a cluster of blossoms already. I expect to have to bring them inside, if we have an unusually cold night.

I've kept full sized tomatoes right up until the first of the year and picked tomatoes off them, until they froze for the past two winters. They were huge plants in five gallon buckets with stakes, so I couldn't take them inside. This year my full sized tomatoes were too diseased (rainy season) to save. I have only mature peppers, some herbs, and a lemon tree in the greenhouse.

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Re: Is it possible to start tomato plants from a cutting

Post  plantoid on 12/4/2013, 6:53 am

Thanks Pollinator

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