I found this trick out by accident. I planted a Hydrangea paniculata in the back of my house. The next season I noticed that one of the lower branches that lay on the ground rooted and I cut it from the original plant and now a few years later I have a five foot tall bloom shrub in the front of my house just like the one in the back. I realized that this was a technique called “layering,” which I have heard of but never actually tried. As you can see it has to be one of the easiest ways to propagate woody plants.
Propagate Woody Plants
See this large Spirea shrub has naturally layered itself and developed a new root system.
You can see here where it naturally broke off from the original shrub.
It was a little too close to the edge so I dug it up and I ended with four plants to plant somewhere else or give away.
This is a lovely shrub, in fact, it is one my 5 Must Have Shrubs post because it is one of my favorites.
Take a branch that is low to the ground and pull off any leaves in the middle. Then scrape the underside with your pruners or a knife. Then dig up some of the soil below and bury the middle section add a little soil on top and a rock. Some places will also suggest adding a little rooting hormone to the wound or scraped area, but I haven’t bothered.
Check back after a few weeks and check on the branch. You should start to see little roots forming. After several weeks when you have a nice set of roots you can cut the branch from the mother plant and pot it in it’s own pot or plant it somewhere in the garden.
Make sure to cut back the foliage to give the roots a chance to grow.
How easy is that.