Air Layering Roses – My First Attempt

Sharing is caring!

For Christmas in 2021, my husband got me an air layering set. It came with a bunch of bubbles that snap together and I bought peat moss to use as the rooting medium. Here’s the documentary of my first attempt in propagating roses with the air layering technique.

Air layering ball on roses with lots of new growth
Air layering ball on roses with lots of new red growth and older green leaves

The idea behind air layering is that plants in contact with soil or another rooting medium will send out roots.

Once roots form, you can then cut off the new plant, which is a clone of its mother!

I’m hopeful that the rose bush I’m trying to air layer will cooperate so I can enjoy more of these stunning roses!

Air Layering Rose Bushes

Air layering propagation as they worthwhile gardening trick of the trade to learn if you enjoy making more plans from those you already have.

Gather these materials and follow these steps for the best chance at a successful air layering of your roses.


  • Healthy rosebush
  • Air layering bubbles
  • Peat moss
  • Water
  • Knife
  • Rooting hormone like Clonex

If you do not have an air layering capsule, you can try using a plastic baggie or plastic wrap to pack the peat moss around the stem.

How to Air Layer Rose Bushes

If you want to try air layering rose bushes, follow these steps:

  1. Fill an air layering bubble with moist peat moss.
  2. Find a straight stem on the rose bush with healthy growth above it.
  3. Gently create a wound on a leaf node in the direction of the newest growth.
  4. Dab on some rooting hormone like Clonex.
  5. Make sure peat moss touches the cut branch.
  6. Place the air layering device around the rose stem and snap it closed.
  7. Wait patiently for the branches to send out roots.

As of November 2022, this is as far as I’ve gotten with my air layering experiment in the garden.

I’m hopeful by spring that roots will have formed inside the air layering capsule.

If I’m successful, I will then cut the stem below where the roots formed and plant the air layered specimen to create a new rose bush!

Black air layer ball snapped onto a rose bush stem
Black air layer ball snapped onto a rose bush stem


What is air layering?

Air layering is a plant propagation technique that involves packing moss around a stem still attached to the parent plant with the hope that roots will form.

Once roots do form, the new clone plant can be separated from the mother plant.

When is the best time for air layering?

Spring and fall generally work well for air layering plants.

By the way, if you enjoyed this post on air layering, you might also be interested in my post on propagating roses from cuttings!

Have you tried air layering before? Do you have any success stories or tips to share? Feel free to ask questions as well and I will help as much as possible!

Happy Gardening!

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *