How to Propagate Roses

Learning how to propagate roses can expand your garden size twofold.

Propagation is the process of reproducing plants from a single parent plant. By doing this, you can grow multiple new rose bushes from just a single bush.

Roses that you purchase at a nursery are grafted onto rootstock, which is the base and root portion of grafted plants. They’re sold that way so they’ll grow faster and bloom more quickly.

But, there’s a downside to these faster-growing roses: Suckers easily grow from the base of the bush.

Suckers is a term generally used for any stems that emerge away from the main plant. They form from underground root buds and are just a way a plant grows to a larger size.

To keep the shape of your rosebush, use these suckers for propagating!

Here’s how to propagate roses:

  • Take your own cutting from year-old stems of your favorite roses in the spring or after the first heavy frost.
  • Identify a stem that is about the thickness of a pencil and about six inches long. Trim the stem at a node, the place where a leaf grows from a stem.
  • Next, trim back the other end of stem at another node.
  • Dip the end of the stem in a root hormone to promote root development.
  • Then push the stem into a pot of soil or directly into soil in your garden.

Propagate as many stems as you can without butchering your original rose bush. Propagating can be hit or miss, so the more stems you propagate, the higher your chances are for success.

Within the year, they should be strong enough to transplant to their final growing spot.

Further Reading


  1. Very well done. May I presume that if I propagate a stem from a rose grafted on a different root stock that the product will be the grafted rose. For example, I have a Cabana grafted on a florida root stock. If i take a graft of the Cabana, I assume that I will get a Cabana on its own root. Is that correct?


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