Propagation 101: How to propagate plants By Water? Step-by-step instruction

How to propagate plants step by step?

Having houseplants can be expensive, but what if I told you there was a way to get a new one for free? The process is known as propagation, and today I will show you how to propagate a plant and create a new one for free.

As a general rule, You should cut off a diagonal segment of a plant to propagate it if you want to get a new house plant with Propagation. Choosing a stem with one or two root notches is essential. (See the image below for a root notch) Root notches are where roots start growing again. When you cut the stem, place it in water until new roots develop. Pot the new plant into clean soil once there are roots.

To make the process as easy as possible, I decided to show you exactly how propagation works. During my last visit to my parents, I expressed a cutting of a plant I liked, and to simplify the process, I decided to show you how I carried out the process, including some photos.

You will only need a clean jar (preferably transparent so you can watch the propagation progress), water, scissors and your desired plant.

Step 1: cut the right stem.

Firstly, you must ensure that the plant you are multiplying is healthy and robust, so you do not damage it or the propagation process. If the plant belongs to anyone, you should seek their permission before you cut it to avoid an uncomfortable situation😉.
Here are two things you should consider before making the cut:

  • Cut leaves 4″-6″ (10-15 cm) long; stems longer than that may create weak plants, while stems shorter may result in unsuccessful propagation.
  • Choosing a good stem for propagation involves ensuring that it has 2–4 leaves.
  • Stem with at least two root notches. The root notches are the prominent points that indicate a new leaf is about to emerge. If the plant does not have a leaf with two root notches, choose one with one root notch, but do not settle for leaves without a root notch.

After you cut, it is recommended to wash the stem to avoid pests that may be in the plant and we don’t see it.

I picked this stem while I was at my parent’s home, as I noticed it had five leaves and more than two root notches on it.
You can certainly choose a stem with only two root notches, as I mentioned above; I couldn’t resist this stem😊🌿

Under the stem of water, I washed the stem well for about 30 seconds.

root notches
I picked this stem while I was at my parent’s home.

Step 2: Wait for the stem to grow roots

When you cut the stem and clean it, you will need to place it in a jar of water.
Place the jar in indirect sunlight. If the water evaporates, add more water. Change the water once a week – let the process do its thing, and do not over-touch it.
We will need to wait for our stems to grow roots in the coming weeks. Roots can take anywhere from two weeks to several months to start growing, so be patient with the process and enjoy it as much as possible.

Step 2: Wait For The Stem To Grow Roots
Here is the stem I cut from my parent’s plant in a jar with clean, lukewarm water.

Step 3: Potting our new free plant

Planting the propagation in a pot is the last step.
We should not plant the new plant as soon as the roots emerge, but rather let it stay in water for a month before planting, so that the roots can develop and strengthen. The roots should reach a length of approximately 3″-5″.
When we feel the roots in the new pot are strengthen enough, we will plant them in fresh soil, adding fertilizer to the soil. At the end of the planting, water the new pot we made a little and continue to take care of it as we do with our other houseplants.

When the roots look like this, you will know that the plant can be planted in a pot.
When the roots look like this, you will know the plant can be planted in a pot.

And regarding the stem I picked from my parents, I am still waiting for him to grow roots in the water before I transfer it to the pot, but in the meantime, I place it on my desk by the window. As you can see in the picture, there is sunlight on it, but not in direct sunlight.

As of writing these lines, it has only been two days since I cut it, but I promise to come back and update you that it will grow roots and I will be able to plant it in the pot. So don’t forget to save this article on your Pinterest so you can come back to it in the future.

my propagate process
The plant I propagate on my desktop is two days old.

Is it possible to keep plant cuttings in water for a long time?

It has been found that in many cases, houseplants can thrive in water indefinitely, as long as they are provided with what they need to thrive. This is called hydroponic growing, and it makes for a very unique way to display houseplants, as it makes them look much more vibrant.

When it comes to transplanting a rooted plant from water into a pot, I am never in a hurry to do so, and I let my plant spend at least three months in the water before I plant it in the pot, making sure that our roots are as strong and optimal as possible even before we move it to its pot.

4 Mistakes to Avoid When Propagating Plants By Water

here are 4 Mistakes to Avoid When Propagating Plants By Water:

  • Water should not reach the plant leaves: only the stem should be submerged, not the crown.
  • Ensure the cutting is mosquito larvae-free by washing the root to avoid pests we cannot see.
  • Ensure that adequate light is provided for cutting.
  • Don’t try to do Propagate Plants By Water when it comes to plants that can quickly propagate in the soil, such as red ruby alternanthera, begonia venosa, etc.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best size pot for the Propagation plant?

Ensure the pot has enough room for the roots to grow but not so big that the plant can’t stand alone.

Is it possible to Propagation the new plant we produced?

It’s best to wait until the new plant grows for a minimum of a year before cutting it. This prevents us from damaging the plant we have worked so long to propagate.

Is it possible to propagate any plant?

You can propagate any plant with the right amount of time, dedication, and dedication, but some plants are significantly harder to propagate. Pothos, tradescantia, monsteras, and philodendrons are easy to manage and excellent beginner propagation plants, so we recommend starting with one.


Hey, My name is Liat and I am addicted to house plants! I have at home more than 50 different types of plants of all kinds - succulents, cactus, tropical plants, orchids and more! Feel free to share the blog with friends on social networks.

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