How To Propagate In Water

If you have leggy plants, then this tutorial is for you! It is a super easy and fun way to propagate your plants.

My chameleon cage has a few bushy pothos and I’ve been wanting to chop them for awhile. I know many of you have pothos and probably want to know how to propagate them. Water propagation and using a humidity box are my two favorite methods to propagate. In this tutorial, I will show you how easy it is to water propagate. If you would like to see my box method, you can find it here.

What You Will Need:

  • Pothos and vining Philodendrons work really well
  • Any jar, vase, or container
  • Scissors or knife
  • Rubbing alcohol to sterilize with
  • Paper towels or cloth
  • Filtered or distilled water

How To Take Cuttings

First, I always make sure to clean off my scissors or pruning shears with rubbing alcohol before cutting anything. Believe it or not, the plant could get an infection from dirty shears or scissors, and die.

I take cuttings from the mother plant and make sure to keep a root node and leaf on the portion I want to propagate. The cuttings can be a long stalk or a short one, it really doesn’t matter as long as it has a root node. A root node looks like a little brown bump on the stalk of the plant. It’s where roots will come out when you put it in water or soil, so it’s pretty important. It’s hard to root up a cutting if it doesn’t have one. It’s not impossible, depending on the type of plant, but it is more difficult.

When I prepare a cutting for water or soil propagation, I also make sure to cut away any leaves that may sit in the water or damp soil. It will rot off anyway, so it’s best to just cut it off.

Time For Water

Once we have our cuttings, they are now ready to be placed in water. If you can, use filtered or reverse osmosis water. Most tap water tends to have too many salts or minerals in it, which can affect the plant in a bad way. In my experience, filtered and reverse osmosis water has seemed to work best. If you don’t have filtered water, you can fill an empty gallon container with water, and let it sit out for a day or so, so the minerals can evaporate out. Be sure to change the water out once a week to limit bacterial or algae growth in your jar.

If Things Go Wrong

Cuttings don’t always root up like we would want them too. Sometime the cuttings will get mushy and rot. If this happens you will have to throw them away. When making cuttings, its best to take extra just incase this happens.

New Roots, Now What?

When these cuttings get a substantial amount of roots on them, about an inch or two, they are ready to be pot up in some well draining soil. Since they rooted up in water, you will have to make sure that the soil is kept damp. This way the cuttings won’t go into shock and they can acclimate better to the soil.

Place in a well lit room and enjoy! You just made new plants! You can share with friends or repot with the mother plant to create a fuller looking plant.


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