Easy Tips for Propagating Indoor Plants

Growing plants indoors is rewarding. However, most indoor gardeners shy away from increasing the number of their houseplants when they think about the cost. Buying new seedlings can be pricey, especially when the particular species you are looking for is rare.

Contrary to the popular belief that propagating houseplants is for experts, anyone can do it from their home. It doesn’t demand any exceptional knowledge or skills. Here are easy tips for propagating houseplants at home.

Methods of Propagating 

Different plants have varying ways of propagation. The standard propagation methods for houseplants are:

  • Dividing
  • Stem cutting
  • Leaf-cutting

Take note that each plant species have different propagation requirements.


Image source: Pinterest

This process involves sub-dividing a plant into two or more portions to make new plants. The best plants to propagate by this method are those with clamps of various stems or have a rhizome. They include peace lilies, spider plants, ZZ plants, and many other perennial plants.

Steps to follow:

  • Remove the plant from the planting container and examine the roots. Choose to subdivide the section that has healthy roots.
  • Use a sharp knife to subdivide the plant into proportions and ensure the roots remain intact.
  • Repot the divisions in new potting soil, ensuring all roots are under the soil.
  • Water the newly planted divisions and place them in a warm spot with bright but indirect sunlight. 

The best time to cut and plant divisions is during spring.

Stem Cuttings

Image source: Pinterest

It is a popular method for propagating common indoor plants like zinnias, pothos, spider plants, philodendron, dracaena, asters. Unlike divisions, you can do stem cuttings throughout the year. And you can choose to propagate the cuttings in water or soil.

Steps to follow:

  • Start by cutting the node. It is where the leaf and the meet. Look out for a bit of bump along the stem to quickly spot the node.
  • When using soil to propagate, you will need a rooting hormone; dip the cuttings into the hormone before inserting them into the soil. The potting soil must be fresh, and two-thirds of the cuttings should be in the soil. Place the growing container away from direct light and maintain moisture.
  • When propagating in water, place the cuttings in room temperature water and wait for the roots to develop. The roots may take 3-4 weeks to develop, but it may take longer than this in some plants. Change the water after every 3-5 days. Once the roots attain 1-2 inches in length, transfer the plants to a pot.

The cuttings must be from healthy and pest-free stems for the best results.

Leaf Cutting

Image source: Reddit

There are particular houseplants that you can propagate from the leaf cuttings. They include African violets, jade plants, begonias, and sansevierias. The proper season to take leaf cuttings is from spring to early summer.

Steps to follow when taking leaf cuttings:

  • The first step is to cut the plant’s leaves as cleanly as possible—target cutting where the leaf joint is. Give the leaf-cuttings couple of hours or a day to dry out so that the cuts can heal.
  • Once the cuttings heal, apply rooting hormone to the tip of the leaf and then dip about two-thirds of the cuttings into new potting soil. Ensure the leaves are pointing out of the soil.
  • Then press the potting mix gently around the stem.

Remember to cut clean leaves from healthy and pest-free plants.

Note: Propagation is never 100% successful. However, you can increase your odds by practicing the tips above. When you fail, try again, and you will succeed.


So, which plants do you desire to multiply in your home? Start propagating your houseplants at home and enjoy watching them grow from tiny seedlings to mature indoor garden plants. Check out our easy plants to propagate. Subscribe to our blog today for more gardening tips. 

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