When you propagate a plant, you essentially take part of that plant and grow it into a brand new plant. For example, cutting sections of my monstera to reproduce over time has allowed me to have more plants throughout my home – and it was really easy to do. You don’t have to be a professional gardener to do that either – in fact, you don’t even have to have a green thumb at all. To get started, check out these easy plants to propagate.
5 easy plants to propagate for beginners
It is easy to multiply succulents. All you have to do is remove a few leaves from the plant. Laura LeBoutillier, the plant expert behind Garden Answer, recommends doing this by gently wiggling the leaves from right to left and twisting them slightly so they can jump straight out of the stem. (If a leaf is torn, it does not grow roots.) Once you have your leaves, put them in bright light for a few days to make the ends fall over hard skin. So when the ends are dry, simply lay the leaves on top of cactus soil in bright, indirect light. Spray them with water with a spray bottle, and repeat every few days when the soil is dry.
You will eventually begin to notice that roots spring out of the ends – sometimes after a few weeks, and sometimes after as long as a few months. It all depends on the type of succulent you reproduce. “Let it grow until a new juicy baby is formed, then carefully remove it and plant it in its own pot,” she said in a YouTube video. “You can remove the leaf at this point, but I prefer to leave it in time so that it can wither and fall off by itself.”
Monsteras are easy plants to propagate in water and it is really fun to watch the roots develop. Using sharp and clean scissors or a knife, cut half an inch to an inch below the node and the aerial root, where the roots will grow from when in water. Then place the cuttings in a vase or jar of water. “Make sure the aerial root is immersed in water, and place it in an area that gets very bright, indirect light. I typically have mine about five feet away from a south-facing window. I find that the roots grow faster with more light sheep. they, “says Christian from Crazy Plant Guy in a YouTube video.
Change the water on a weekly basis and always make sure that the water covers the root of the air. When the roots are about 4 inches long (which can take up to six weeks), it is ready to plant in the ground.
3. Snake plants
While there are many different types of snake plants, Amanda Switzer, the plant expert behind Planterina, says they can all be propagated in the same way. When another plant – also called a puppy – begins to grow from the ground, take the whole plant out of the pot and gently pull the new baby plant away. “Wait until it’s big enough to survive on its own – maybe about five or six inches high. Then separate it from the mother plant and repot it. That’s the easiest way,” she said in a YouTube video. Or, if a leaf breaks off your snake plant, Switzer says you can put the leaf in water and let the roots develop before transferring it to the ground. When doing so, be sure to change the water once a week.
To propagate a pothos, use a sharp, clean knife and cut off part of the plant. Aim for a piece that is at least six inches long with four or more leaves and two nodes – also called the brown buds on the stem. After removing the blade closest to the end you cut, place the cut end in water and place it in a place that gets bright, indirect sunlight. Replace the water weekly. After the cuttings grow roots that are an inch or longer – which can take weeks – you can pot it in soil.
5. Spider plants
Spider plants develop many babies, called spiders. When you want to propagate the plant, just look for a spider that has a knot or a small bump at its base. Then cut the spider off its stem close to the node with a clean pair of scissors. Then dip the bottom in a small bottle of water so that the roots can grow in the water, and put the plant in clear, indirect light. Be sure to change the water regularly as the roots grow. When the roots are a few inches long, plant it in soil.