Guide to houseplant propagation
Houseplant propagation is an effective way of transforming your space into an urban jungle. So, if you want more houseplants without heading to the nearest garden centre, one of the easiest ways to keep adding to your collection is to propagate!
There are various ways to multiply your houseplants, and although most cuttings will happily grow roots eventually, the best propagation method will depend on the type of plant you’re dealing with. Here experts at the plant care brand Baby Bio® share some hints and tips to help you make more botanical babies.
Water propagation couldn’t be easier and is a great technique that even beginners can master. Some of the best varieties to propagate this way include varieties of Pothos, Monstera Deliciosa, ZZ Plant and Inch Plant– most plants with long stems and nodes will soon produce a healthy root system.
To do this, simply take a pair of clean, sharp scissors and snip a section of your plant off just below the node – they’re the knobbly bits on the stem! Place it in a jar or vase of cool water, and within a couple of weeks it will have developed its own root system and will be ready to plant on.
Just make sure you keep the water fresh to prevent mould from growing, and don’t let it stay rooting in the water for too long, or it won’t take to the soil when it is potted up. Once the roots are approximately an inch long, you can transfer it to a pot with houseplant soil and give it a good water using Baby Bio® Houseplant Food.
Leaf cutting is usually the best way to propagate succulents, and it’s just as easy as using water. Again, simply snip a leaf off at the base of the plant, cutting at a 45-degree angle using clean, sharp scissors. Leave the cutting to “scab over” or dry out for a couple of days, then pop it in some potting soil which has been watered generously with a fertiliser. Then, simply wait for it to take root!
Make sure that you place it in the soil with the fresh cut in the soil rather than upside down, otherwise it will rot, and make sure you use a specialist fertiliser like Baby Bio® Cactus Food to help it grow strong spines and healthy roots.
Most succulents and cacti are easily propagated this way, but the Snake Plant, Kalanchoe, and Echeveria are particularly fast rooting. Likewise, if you knock off any leaves from succulents, such as a Jade Plant or String of Pearls you can also allow it to dry out then put it straight into soil, and it will start propagating!
Perhaps the messiest of propagating techniques, dividing requires you to remove the entire plant from its container, so you can expect some soil to be spilled! Gently loosen the plant from its pot by tapping it on the side and bottom and easing it out. Place the plant on a clean, flat surface and remove soil from the base and sides so that the roots are exposed. Then, take a clean, sharp knife and cut the plant into sections, making sure that each section still has plenty of healthy roots.
Once you have your new plant sections, simply pot them up into fresh soil and give them a good water using Baby Bio® Houseplant Food. Place the pot in bright, indirect sunlight and water with fertiliser regularly until it becomes established.
One of the easiest plants to propagate this way is the Chinese Money Plant, Spider Plants or Aloe Vera, as produce small “pups” from the soil itself. Once they are big enough to survive on their own, you can simply separate it from its root connecting to the parent plant and put them in their own pot. Ferns, Calathea and the Peace Lily are also easy to propagate this way.