· John Heider's Answer
· Hi Nieci-Like Doug said the Silverthorn (Elaeagnus ebbengei) can be propagated by cuttings. The Elaeagnus shrubs are most commonly propagated using seed, but they can be grown from rooted cuttings with just as much success. Below I have noted steps you can take to grow this plant from cuttings.
Using any small container with drainage holes in the bottom will work well. Fill the containers with a good planting mix or make your own 50/50 mix of peat moss and course clean sand.
Take an 8- to 10-inch-long cutting from your Elaeagnus shrub in late winter when your plant is dormant. Take your cuttings from your plants newer growth. The cuts should be made clean and at a slight angle to improve water absorption. Each cutting should have at least three leaf buds.
Using a sharp knife carefully remove a 1 1/2 inch-long section of the outer bark exposing the inner layer of bark. Dip the bottom half (the end that has the bark stripped off) of the cutting in a rooting hormone. Rooting hormones can be purchased at most nurseries and garden centers.
Make a hole in the planting mix with your finger or pencil. Insert half of the cutting into the hole trying not to disturb the rooting hormone and keeping them standing upright. Push planting mix back against the cutting avoiding any air pockets.
Water well making sure water runs out the bottom of the container so all the mix is moistened. The cuttings need to be kept moist not wet. Cuttings left in saturated soil may rot before rooting.
Cuttings should be misted a couple of times a day to keep them from drying out or you can cover the cuttings with plastic wrap. I use large baggies and hold them around the container with rubber bands. Punch a few holes or cut off the two upper corners of the bag for circulation. The plastic cover helps to keep the cuttings from drying out.
Set your containers where there is filtered sunlight, no direct sun, and a fairly consistent temperature. Temperatures for best rooting is around 70 to 75 degrees. If the temperature outside is cold you may want to put the cuttings next to a window in your home.
Water when top of soil starts to dry to keep your planting mix moist, but do not over-water.
Check for roots in 8 to 10 weeks by gently pulling the cutting out of the rooting medium. Feel for resistance that will indicate root growth.
You can transplant your rooted cuttings into a 1-gallon nursery container filled with sterile, well-draining planting or soil mix a week after rooting. Keep your plants outdoors in a well lit shaded spot with good air circulation for about 2 months before you plant them in their place in your garden.
Hope this helped.