One of the best parts about being a plant parent is having the ability to grow a whole new plant from simple cuttings of an old plant—propagation. Is your plant currently struggling? Propagate. Do you want to gift a friend a plant? Propagate. Or, perhaps, you just want another plant? Propagate. It, also, helps you gain a better understanding of your plants and it’s growth process..
HOW TO TAKE A CUTTING
Before you take that first cut, you need to determine what type of plant you have because not all plants can be propagated the same way.
Plants like a Watermelon Peperomia, Snake Plant or any sort of Begonia can be propagated from the stem. Meaning, you can just cut anywhere along the stem and it’ll grow roots from there.
While other plants like Monstera, Pothos and Philodendrons can only be propagated by node cuttings.
A node is best identified by the knob like bumps along the stem and are often attached to a leaf. And the space between each node, all the stem area, is called the internode.
When it comes to taking a cutting, take a clean pair of scissors or shears and cut the internode in half. It's that simple. You should be left with a leaf, a node and a bit of stem right after the node. Now you’ll need to figure out the best substrate to propagate in!
This is where the fun happens. There’s all sorts of popular propagation methods but the most common are water and soil. And in our experience, different plants propagate best in different substrates but now’s your chance to experiment and see what works best.
Water propagation will be the fastest method. Simply take a closed container, like a cup or a vase, and fill it with enough water to completely submerge your cutting. Place that cup in a brightly lit area and fill up the water as needed (usually about once a week).
For soil propagation the first thing you’ll need is soil and some sort of closed container. Personally, I like to reuse any take out container. Next, place enough soil in the container to completely cover the node. Lightly water the soil, so it’s damp but not wet—too much moisture will rot your cutting. Close the top of the container and place in a brightly lit area.
While a lot of plants can propagate fine without any extra humidity, if you find your cutting is looking a bit limp—you may want to introduce some extra humidity. Some ways you can do this is by taking your propagation and placing it in an old Ziploc bag or placing it in a bathroom with windows or even buying a mini terrarium.
For instructions for specifically propagating and caring for Monsteras, check out this blog.
Now that you know these simple steps to propagating, you can try it with all your plants and really dive into the world of propagation.