Plant propagation in water.
Hello there and welcome to the Floral Feed. We are still a bit new at the concept of a blog but I thought the best way to approach it and present something interesting and readable was to cover questions we receive from customers that wander in either looking for something or just wanting to know a little more information.. whether it be floral design related or indoor plant care.
We have a pretty good brains trust at Miss Moss with a variety of backgrounds and collective experience in a wide range of things, so we can usually come up with something! .. so can Google but we find that sometimes people just want to talk to a person. Go figure!
So, when we get asked. “This long trailing piece.. if I cut it and replant it, will it grow? “ The answer to this, most times, is yes! Indoor plants, as well as succulents will propagate easily under the right conditions. Today, I thought I might cover propagation of plant cuttings in water.
Trailing plants, especially, will propagate easily from what is call a node, which will present as a swollen area on the stem. A clean cut needs to be made a few millimeters just below the node. This is where the new roots will eventually grow from. Pothos or ‘Devils Ivy’ are a great example of this and are a nice easy one to start with. As are trailing Peperomia, Philodendron and Ivy.
More recently, water propagation has become popular and can also look quite decorative. A purpose made stand can be used ( available in store and made in Canberra no less! ) or any clear glass or vase would work just as well.
Keep your cutting out of direct sunlight to discourage algae growth and to prevent the water from heating up and cooking the roots of your potential plant! Just a few leaves above water level need to be left intact to encourage photosynthesis and therefore root growth.
Tiny roots can begin to form in as little as a week, however some can take up to a month, depending on the plant type. Roots formed in water are finer than those produced in soil, so care needs to be taken when transplanting to avoid root damage. Initially, the cutting should not be allowed to dry out. This strengthens the roots and helps them acclimatise to their new soil environment.
Plant cuttings may be left in water for extended periods of time but it must be kept in mind that the longer you take to transfer your rooted cutting to soil, the less chance it will have of survival. It’s like the cutting gets used to its water home and has a hard time adjusting to a very different medium.
All in all making new plants from some of your favourite plants can be very rewarding and creative! Your new fledgling plants can make great gifts or just give you new plants.. because as all indoor plant lovers know.. you can never have too many. Well, you can, if you don’t have enough pots.. but that’s another story.
Plant Propagation Summary
Begin but cutting your plant stem a few millimetres below the swollen node.
Place in a clear glass or small vase filled with water. Keep your cutting out of direct sunlight to discourage algae growth and to prevent the water from heating up and cooking the roots of your potential plant! Just a few leaves above water level need to be left intact to encourage photosynthesis and therefore root growth.
It can take between 1 week and 1 month for roots to form. Once you see small roots transfer to a small pot and keep the soil wet to allow the roots to strengthen.
Enjoy your new fledgling plants which can make great gifts or just give you new plants.