In article <6rgfte$ebg at ednet2.orednet.org>, rweinber at orednet.org (Robert G
>Starting Aspen from seed is virtually impossible. However they are very
>easily propogated from cuttings. Simply cut finger thick 6-9" long pieces
>of Aspen limbs in the fall or winter. Keep them refrigerated and wrapped
>in plastic until the soil temperature reaches about 40 deg F in the
>spring. Stick them in the ground, buds pointing up, to a depth such that
>one bud is above ground. Put them on a 6' or wider spacing in moist well
>drained soil, keep them protected from deer & livestock, and watch them
>La Grande, OR
Are you sure that you are talking about Aspens? My favorite references (e.g.
"Michigan Trees" by Barnes & Wagner, Jr.) indicate that at least for Quaking
Aspen (Populus Tremuloides) and Bigtooth Aspen (Populus Grandidentata):
"...unlike willows and cottonwoods, it does not propagate from woody
Balsam Poplar (Populus balsamifera), Lombardy Poplar (Populus nigra Linnaeus
'Italica') and the Hybrid "miracle tree ????" that I mentioned before DO
propagate readilly from stem cuttings, however.
Cut them just below a pair of leaves, then rip off the leaves. Stick them in a
bucket of water in the shade and wait for the roots to emerge. Transplant into
sand, peat or vermiculite and water vigorously for a couple of weeks.
For the Aspens above, go to an existing stand and dig up some root suckers
(with permission). Many will have decent root fibers already (you may need to
bring shears to cut them away from the "mother" tree. Trim off most of the
leaves until the tree roots better establish themselves.
P.S. Interesting trivia:
Cut up stems of most willows soaked in a bucket of water will exude a natural
root hormone that will assist stem cuttings of a variety of plants in the
development of roots.