Re-potting and Propagating Houseplants

Have you started talking to your houseplants yet? I have. I also decided I wanted more houseplants! Propagating houseplants is pretty easy and it saves a non-essential trip to the nursery as well as quite a bit of money (have you noticed how expensive houseplants have become?!) So, this morning's project was to re-pot and propagate a few plants. 

I carried the plants to the greenhouse where I am free to make a mess :-)

The little guy on the left was chewed off a larger plant by Troublemaker Tucker a month or so ago. It's been living in a jar of water on the kitchen windowsill ever since. I noticed a few weeks ago that it was starting to grow roots and I wanted to see if it would survive a new planting. (I don't know what kind of plant it is...) 

The pothos in the little blue pot has been growing there for over a year. It broke off the original plant when I first potted it. I also kept it in a jar on the windowsill until it started growing new roots and then planted it. It's been showing signs of stress so, in addition to needing water, I figured it was running out of room and needed new potting soil. 

I carefully removed the pothos from the blue pot and planted it in the hanging pot you see to the right, so that this one now has two hanging strands of pothos (both originally from the same plant). 

Then I moved the little guy that Tucker chewed from the jar to the blue pot with new potting soil. 

Because the pothos was so long, I decided to trim it and use that cutting to make a new pothos plant. I used clean scissors to cut between two leaves. 

The brown spots at the base of the leaf stem are nodes. When I leave the cutting in a jar of water, new roots will start growing from here. I will keep the cutting in water in a warm, sunny spot until it has about an inch of new root growth, and then I'll plant it.

Here's the new cutting in water and the cutting that Tucker made in it's new home.

I wanted to split the spider plant on the far right. It's done so well in it's home and it seems like new snakes are poking up all the time! It's one of my favorites, and I thought two would be better than one (which is also true for cookies). There are a few ways to propagate a snake plant and I chose to separate the rhizomes.

Rhizomes are underground, horizontally growing stems that lead from the mother plant and sprout new baby plants. To separate a few, I carefully un-potted the mother plant and found a rhizome that came away easily. Sometimes they need to be cut with clean shears or scissors. Once I separated the new plant from the mother, I put the mother plant back and augmented her potting soil. Then planted the now separate snake plant in a new pot. And ta-da! Two snake plants! 

Another easy plant to propagate is a spider plant. Spider plants grow babies on runners. To start growing a new spider plant, I plant the baby spider plant next to the mother with the runner attached. Once it takes root, I just snip off the runner. You can see in the picture, below, there is one spider plant that I propagated a while ago and a new baby spider with the runner still attached planted next to it.

Now I'll just keep my fingers crossed that everyone survives! :-)


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