Frequently asked questions

Miss Chen
What are the origins of plant rooting hormones

Since Medieval times plant growers have known that many plants can be propagated from cuttings. The new plants have the same characteristics as the parent plant. Some cuttings root easily, some with difficulty and some never on their own.

In the 1930's horticultural researchers isolated the plant growth regulators which promote rooting of cuttings and improve the root mass of rooted plants. These regulators even produce rooting of some cuttings which do not self root. In 1939, using these revolutionary regulators, Dutch scientists developed rooting products and techniques now used worldwide. The manufacturer, Rhizopon b.v., is the world's largest company solely devoted to plant rooting products and technology.

Select cuttings to improve rooting success

Why do cuttings from the same parent plant root while others do not?
What is the 'best' time to take cuttings?

Rooting of cuttings is affected by many variables. Some plants have different rooting ability at different times of the year. A few weeks difference in taking of cuttings may produce success or failure. Woody plants are especially influenced by timing.

When taking shoot cuttings from the same plant at the same time some cuttings may have different rooting ability. One reason may be the position of the shoots on the plant. Current year shoots may root differently from second year shoots. Shoots from the lower part of the plant may have had less sunlight then upper shoots; the upper shoots may be a few weeks older than the lower shoots. In general, younger shoots need less stimulation to root than older shoots and require a more stable propagation environment. Use a lower Hortus IBA Water Soluble Salts concentration.

It is important to keep notes. Include data such as the number of days after the flowering of forsythia to account for seasonal variation, the origin of the cuttings, the time and weather when the cuttings were taken and sticking, the date taken, the rooting method used and concentration of Hortus IBA Water Soluble Salts, the conditions at the time cuttings take root, and the relative quality of the roots.

Difficult cuttings CAN be rooted

How can I increase the rooting yield of difficult to root hardwood cuttings?
How do I control the concentration of Hortus IBA Water Soluble Salts to increase yield?
Some cuttings root with difficulty. Lacking success, some growers erroneously increase the concentration of Hortus IBA Water Soluble Salts.
An increased concentration may inhibit root promotion. Try a LOW concentration of Rhizopon AA or Hortus IBA Water Soluble Salt with an INCREASED basal end immersion time. Increased immersion time allows the cutting to absorb the active ingredients. A low concentration is also economical.
Use the IMMERSE METHOD by immersing the basal end of cuttings approximately 1" into solution for 4-12 hours.

Root cuttings by Quick Dip

How do I use the QUICK DIP METHOD to root herbaceous or woody cuttings?

The QUICK DIP METHOD is a fast treatment method to root cuttings.
Quickly immerse the basal end of the cutting approximately 1" into solution.
Plant immediately. Use rates as suggested on the plant list.

Use fertilizers and fungicides with care

Can I use fertilizers or fungicides with Hortus IBA Water Soluble Salts?

Hortus IBA Water Soluble Salts do not contain fertilizers or fungicides. Apply these materials based upon plant requirements. When rooting cuttings do not fertilize until after root initiation. Fertilizer salts may dehydrate the cutting. When transplanting you can apply or Hortus IBA Water Soluble Salts with fertilizer at the same time. Fungicides may inhibit root formation by stressing plant tissue and slowing rooting and plant growth. Use fungicides only as required.

Two easy ways to produce symmetric roots

I use the SPRAY DRIP DOWN® METHOD to root herbaceous cuttings such as chrysanthemum. How do I know how much solution to spray?

What is the difference in performance between the SPRAY DRIP DOWN® METHOD and TOTAL IMMERSE METHOD?

Using either the SPRAY DRIP DOWN® or TOTAL IMMERSE METHOD, Hortus IBA Water Soluble Salts develop symmetric roots on herbaceous plant cuttings. The active ingredients are absorbed into the leaves and stems then transported to the basal end where it induces roots.

When using the SPRAY DRIP DOWN® METHOD first plant the cuttings. Spray the leaves with solution until the liquid drips down into the media near the basal end. Use Hortus IBA Water Soluble Salts at rates suggested on the plant list. For broad leaf cuttings it might be easier to use the TOTAL IMMERSE METHOD. The cutting is immersed a few seconds in the solution. Plant immediately.

Transplants have improved success. Roses have higher flower yield

How do I improve transplanting of bare root plants, plugs, and plants in media?
How many times should I treat plants with Rhizopon or Hortus IBA Water Soluble Salts?
How do I increase flower yield when transplanting young rose bushes?
How can I improve transplant success of Christmas trees? I want to improve our reforestation program which requires that conservation plants recover quickly.

Treatment with Hortus IBA Water Soluble Salts help the rooted plants regenerate roots rapidly so to rapidly absorb water and nutrients. The plants develop a strong early root mass before sprout initiation. Select the method of application based upon practical needs. Treat once at planting time.

For plants in plug or root ball, spray or dip with solution until the media is saturated. For herbaceous plants use Hortus IBA Water Soluble Salts (at 50-100 ppm IBA); for woody plants use about twice this rate.

After treating the roots optionally spray the leaves and stems lightly with a solution using Hortus IBA Water Soluble Salts (at 50-100 ppm IBA);

Using IMMERSION ABSORPTION, trees, shrubs, and other plants planted in the field, nursery bed, or greenhouse have less transplant shock and stress. Treated young rose bush transplants have earlier and increased flower yield.

Product Selection to make Fresh Rooting Solutions


Use the easy to measure powder with water to make your own freshest solutions in any concentration. You can make solutions to over 100,000 ppm IBA active ingredients. The Salts are an economical for making large solution volumes. Hortus IBA Water Soluble Salts is an easier to use and registered replacement technical IBA and K-IBA.

These plant rooting products are completely free of potentially phyto-toxic and flammable alcohol. You make solutions from very dilute to extremely concentrated. The solutions are odorless. Both are US EPA registered with WPS Zero Hour REI. Growers can apply the products and remain in the growing area. There is minimum PPE with no notification requirement.
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