This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V23", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
At p. 467 are some remarks on this subject from the Gardener's Monthly, and it may interest some to know that flowers may be produced on branches on which the flower buds are formed by simply immersing the ends in water, without the aid of chemicals of any kind. During the early part of the present year I cut off some large branches of common lilac with flower buds on them, and set their ends in rain water tanks in the vineries and forcing houses, and they produced leaves and flowers as if they had been rooted plants. From my own observation I think they do best in moderately strong light; but if exposed to bright sunshine they flag, like bushes lifted with their roots mutilated. They, however, soon regained their erect position when the sun went down. Any one fond of experimenting on such subjects will, I think, find many suitable subjects for the purpose amongst deciduous trees and shrubs in the springtime; as when the buds are swelling up, ready to burst into leaf and flower, the organizable matter in the shoots appears capable of carrying on growth for some time without the aid of roots, if the ends of the shoot be simply immersed in water and the top kept in a genial atmosphere. - J. G. L., in Garden.