Chestnuts are autumn dry fruits domestic to Europe & Asia & probably North America but it is also quite possible that they grow somewhere in the Southern hemisphere too.
I chose to clone them cause they were always important culture in my area, where I was born & till now, spent a bigger part of life. Also few years ago, we had a bacterial infection of our chestnut forests which caused so-called "cancer" & the trees really started dying & almost half of the chestnut trees in the forest went completely dry & dead in only 1-2 years. Many people around here got really worried about this & started researching & exploring the phenomenon. They got connected with the growers & biologists from Japan, Chine, Italy & France to get to understand the sickness better.
They claim they have found the problem & helped solve it: They introduced a bug who is eating this other bug who is transmitting the bacteria between the trees. I don't know how big was the human influence on the disease but I'm sure in one thing! As I was watching the disease spreading & progressing...
2 weeks ago the buds on the thin branches slowly started to pop-up...
...I usually pick chestnuts in hundreds of killos so I was really disappointed when the disease firstly appeared & couldn't find neither a single fruit to pick on the locations where I picked dozens of killos just a year ago. It was really sad to see all those trees dying! But already in the 2nd year, I noticed a natural miracle! Many trees survived & started producing fruits again! In small amounts but still producing! My conclusion was much different then that of the so-called scientists!: The chestnut trees live approximately 500 years in average & the human beings live approximately 80 years in average. So, why do we believe that we can successfully fight the chestnut cancer & that our activities have the crucial influence on the disease which is maybe older than humans & chestnut trees together. My belief is that chestnut trees have intelligence & immune system which successfully faught the infection & only the strongest survived! That's the natural selection, the survival of the fittest.
As I mentioned before chestnuts were & still are one of the most important plants in my area - Liburnia, Croatia. Once the forests of chestnuts produced hundreds of tons of chestnut fruit per year & helped the locals survive the winter. They were exchanged for other foods (meat, fish & other plants & mushrooms). In other words, chestnuts were feeding the people of Libirnia & wider.
But by the time the trees have become old & weak so this disease is not a surprise. My idea was to revitalize the forests by making the seedlings & try to sell them to the growers or just go around & plant them randomly wherever I feel like they would fit.
One week ago the buds cracked.
Firstly, I bought a really useful book called "Vegetativno razmnožavanje biljaka" (= Vegetative propagation of plants ). In that book there descriptions of ways how to vegetativly propagate 200 plant species.
The best time to clone chestnuts are December & January - when the trees hibernate. It is also good to use the root-growing hormone! Before taking the cuttings from the mother tree, it is good to prepare vases by filling their bottoms with stones & the rest with fertile soil. If the root-growing hormone is a powder, you'll need a glass of water. You take one cutting & its bottom you dip in water, than the hormone-powder & stick it gently in the soil in the vase you prepared earlier.
You can do the same in the bigger boxes like I did & when the time is right, transplant them to the permanent spots, or even stick them directly in the ground where you want the tree to grow in the future - for the next 500 years! 😅
Some buds are leafing through pretty strongly & confidently!
Hopefully, in approximately 8 months, I will have 1-year-old seedlings ready to be transplanted! 😃😎
I hope this post was useful!
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