How to Propagate Pine Trees

Pine trees are coniferous and there are over 100 different types. The leaves are usually long, slender, dark green and resemble needles. The tree is used mostly for wood pulp and timber. These trees can grow to 25 or 30 feet tall. Propagating can be the most inexpensive way to multiply plants and the most common way is by cuttings, but it can also be done by seeds. It can be fairly easy to propagate a pine tree yourself and it just takes a few basic materials.

Things You'll Need

  • Pruning shears
  • Utility knife
  • Rooting hormone
  • Coarse sand
  • Peat moss
  • 1 gallon pot

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Propagating by Stem Cuttings

Snip an 8- to 10-inch piece from a younger pine tree after the threat of winter frost has passed. The stem should have new growth on it.

Peel 2 inches of bark off the cut end with a utility knife. Dip the peeled end in rooting hormone.

Fill a 1 gallon pot with a mixture of 1 part peat moss and 1 part coarse sand and water. Water the soil, so it is slightly damp.

Cover the bottom 3 inches of the stem in the soil mixture. Give the cutting water once each week and lightly mist one time per day. Place the plant in indirect sunlight, until it has rooted.

Look for the stem to root in two to three weeks. Gently tug on it and if the plant resists, it has developed roots. Once it warms up in the summer, you can move the stem to a permanent location.

Propagating by Seeds

Propagate a pine tree from seeds in addition to cuttings. Collect seeds from a pine cone and place them in a plastic freezer bag with compost.

Lightly spray the inside of the bag with water and place in a freezer for three to four weeks. Take the seeds out of the freezer and soak in a container of room-temperature water for 24 hours.

Place five pine seeds in a new plastic freezer bag. Close the bag and set it in indirect sunlight indoors. The seeds should germinate within 30 days. Put the seeds back in the freezer for another two weeks if they do not start sprouting.

Fill up a 1 gallon pot with a mixture of 1 part peat moss and 1 part compost. Place the seeds 1 inch below the surface. Water the seeds thoroughly.

Water the soil once per week and leave the seeds in 70 to 75 degree temperatures and set in indirect light. Watch for the seeds to germinate in four weeks.


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