Thursday, September 5, 2013
Propagating Succulent Plants
If you are anything like me, you are kind of into the whole succulent plant/terrarium thing that's been gaining popularity the last few years. These little plants can get expensive if you want a collection, but if you give them room to grow, you can actually propagate them yourself, turning one plant into a whole little family of plants. This big guy above was originally shown in my post about windowsill gardening (believe it or not this is the plant in the white teacup, all grown up!). I gave my plant a much bigger pot, and it really took off, sprouting new "branches" all over the place.
To propagate new plants from your own succulent plant, you start by removing "branches" like the one shown above, or even single leaves or petals from your original plant. When I take off branches like the one above, I also remove the leaves down a fair portion of the stem. You will leave these leaves or stems in a shady dry place for 2-3 days before repotting. The stems and leaves will sort of scab over on the ends you cut, you can then replant them in some soil.
Succulents need good drainage, so make sure to put some rocks in the bottom of your pot before adding your soil. I got a decent sized bag of river rocks at the dollar store, pea gravel works well too (you can even mix some pea gravel in with your soil for additional drainage for your plants).
Fill your pot with soil (I use organic potting soil). Do not add any water to the soil, or water directly after planting. My soil is actually a little damp right out of the package and this slight amount of moisture is more than enough while your plants form new root systems (you shouldn't need to water for a week or more after replanting).
Finally, plant your succulent cutting in the soil and pat firmly. Again, do not water the plant immediately after planting. Check after about a week and if the soil is bone dry, you may add a little water. If you are curious how the plant is coming along, you can remove it from your soil to see if the roots have begun to sprout yet (this is a great project for kids!). I have planted several of these (including some that are just single leaves and I will update you all in a few weeks with their progress! Soon I will have a whole windowsill FULL of succulents for future projects (maybe even to give as gifts this holiday season).