Propagations – Experiments Nov-Dec 2020

Note: These are my opinions and experiences, I am no expert and I have not been paid or incentivised to share my thoughts and reviews of any sellers, products or people mentioned in this post.

I am awful at propagating. I hate cutting my plants. BUT I do love experimenting and seeing plants root from a leaf cutting or node is kinda magical. The whole idea and concept that but cutting you can make another plant from an original mother plant is actually fun.

I do realise that not all plants can be cut and propagated and that some grow tubers under the soil like my Alocasia Reginula, and others can be divided eventually. But today I want to look at some of the cuttings I made and how I propagated them.

1. Monstera Borsigiana Variegated – water propagation

I had a variegated monstera with 5 leaves that I decided to cut. The first cut was the top cutting which included an aerial root and 2 leaves. The second was a leaf with a node and the third was a small node with a smallish leaf. I left one leaf on the mother plant and left the plant alone.

The top cutting rooted quickly as it had an aerial root and I potted this once the roots were about 2 inches long. BUT the roots rotted in the soil and it is back in water propagation now. It is doing OK, but the transition to soil will need to be slow, and maybe the roots need to be more established.

The second cutting completely rotted and I had to cut the node so much that it will never root but the leaf is so pretty and even after any weeks is still alive and sitting in a glass.

the node rotted away

The third cutting is refusing to root. I tried water for weeks and week, moss – which it rotted in and now I am trying perlite. I have heard it taking a very long time before, so I will see. I keep it in my cabinet at 20-22 degrees and 60-80% humidity. Maybe in the spring it will come alive.

The mother plant on the other hand has a new growth point that looks nicely variegated and I cannot wait to see, what the new leaves will look like.

new growth point emerging

2. Hoya tricolour – moss

When I cut my hoya, I cut a long vine, which was about 20cm long and then cut the stems so that I had several pairs of leaves. Some of these stems had little bumps that are likely going to be roots. These cuttings were placed into a clear box with damp sphagnum moss. I have the boxes above a heating matt to provide a nice warm and humid environment. It takes a bit of trial and error to make sure the humidity isn’t too high, which you can notice by how much the box is steaming up. If it is too much I just open the box a bit. These cuttings aren’t rooting that fast and I have only seen a tiny bit of rot, but we also have roots!

Hoya tricolor roots!

3. Maranta kerchoveana – water

Unlike Calatheas Maranta can actually be propagated using leaf cuttings. These just need to have a node. And actually they rooted really fast in water. It just took a couple of weeks and then I had enough roots to plant the cuttings back in. You could wait longer too, but I wanted to propagate other things.

4. Golden (reverted) pothos – water

Pothos are notoriously easy to keep and propagate. And actually it is true. All I did was take a cutting with a couple of leaves and a few nodes. I removed the lowest leaf and stuck it in water and in no time you will see roots from the aerial roots emerge.

Something interesting I have seen is that people put Pothos cutting in with other plant cuttings to stimulate rooting. As far as I understand, is the fact that they root so prolific means there is more rooting hormone about, and it gives the other plant a kickstart. If my above mentioned monstera cutting doesn’t do anything, I may need to try this.

5. Philodendron Hastatum – moss

I found this baby vine when reporting my large plant and decided to try and root it in moss as no root came off with it. The main lesson I have learned is to really squeeze the moss and then pull it apart and make it fluffy again. This with a heat mat and grow lights seems to have done the trick for me. Nice little furry roots appeared quickly and it is next going to acclimatise in a bigger pot to less humidity so I can start giving it away. 🙂

Do you have a favourite method for propagating? I have predominantly used the water method in the past but as this post shows I am experimenting with moss now, and as long as you squeeze all the water out it seems to be a good try in combination with a clear box or heat mat.

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