Houseplants have the remarkable ability to turn any house or apartment into the indoor jungle of your dreams. They warm up any room and are great for the mind, body and soul. Here at City Floral Garden Center in Denver we like to carry a wide variety of rare and traditional houseplants, so you’ll always find what you are looking for.
Often times we’ll get questions about how to propagate houseplants and the inner plant nerd comes out in us. Propagation of houseplants can be a great way to multiply your houseplants but can be a daunting task that doesn’t always result in success. We certainly encourage everyone who is a houseplant nerd to give propagation a try. It can help you learn more about your plants and the act of creating a new plant from an existing plant it just exciting!
Depending on the plant, you’ll use one of several propagation methods to sprout a new plant. The most common propagation methods are dividing, rooting a leaf or rooting a cutting. Which ever method you choose, multiplying your houseplants will be an exciting learning experience.
Dividing houseplants is exactly what you’d think it is—dividing one plant into two or more. The best time to divide your houseplants is spring because they have come out of their rest and are ready to start growing again. The easiest plants to divide are those that naturally produce offsets like Spider plants or Sansevierias.
Steps to dividing houseplants
- Start by removing the plant from the pot and examining the root ball. Determine the best areas where you’d like to divide. These are generally areas with a healthy section of roots.
- With a sharp knife cut the plant into sections, making sure that the roots stay well intact.
- Replant the divisions as soon as possible in new potting soil and make sure to plant at the same depth as previous. Water the divisions and place them in a warm location with bright, indirect light. Once established, you should start seeing new growth.
Rooting a Leaf
Rooting from a leaf can be tricky because you must make sure that you get a clean cut from the existing plant. Generally, let the leaf dry out so the cut scabs over so it won’t absorb a lot of moisture when you water it. The best plants to root from a leaf are Sansevierias or jade plants.
Steps to rooting from a leaf
- Start by cutting the leaf of the plant as cleanly as possible. Make sure nothing is left behind in this process. Let the leaf dry out for a couple days to allow the cutting to scab over.
- Dip the tip of the leaf in a rooting hormone and then insert at least two-thirds of the plant into fresh potting soil. Make sure the leaf is pointing out of the soil in the direction of growing.
- Then gently press the potting mix around the stem.
Rooting a Stem Cutting
Propagating a new plant from a cutting can be done in one of two ways—either in water or in soil. Either way is effective in propagation, although putting your cutting in water and watching the roots grow is quite satisfying! Some of the easiest plants to root from a stem cutting are pothos or spider plants.
Steps to rooting from a stem cutting
- Start by cutting just below where the leaf meets the stem, this is called the node. The node looks like a little bump in the side of the stem. This is where you’ll see the root coming out if you are using the water method.
- If you are propagating in soil dip the cutting in a rooting hormone and then insert at least two-thirds of the plant into fresh potting soil. Make sure the stem is pointing out of the soil in the direction of growing. Provide indirect light and keep moist.
- If you are propagating in water simply place the cutting in cool water and wait for the roots to present themselves. Once they are about an inch long remove from water and plant in soil.