Garden & Outdoor

How to Propagate

Plant propagation simply means to use a plant’s own cuttings (usually pieces of stems, roots or leaves) to grow a whole new one. Unlike with seeds, cuttings of plants will produce an identical plant to the one you have taken a cutting from.

Propagating your own plants is a satisfying and inexpensive hobby, made better with the rewarding outcome of lots of new blooms being added to your garden.

Each plant is different, so you’ll have to do some research on the best kind of environment your specific species will thrive in. However, the steps for how to propagate a plant are easy to follow with the help of this guide.

Let’s get started with what you’ll need…




Take your cutting

Cutting being taken

Using sharp scissors, take a cutting from the plant you wish to propagate. Cut a 4-5 inch long stem just below a leaf, right before a little brown root node, and include a node or two with the cutting – this is where the new roots will come from.

Remove all the leaves from your cutting, apart from a few at the top.

Follow this with making a small incision at the lower end of the stem to encourage root growth.

Top tip: Use a sharp knife to minimise damage to your cutting.


Place cutting in water

Cutting in water

Fill a glass vessel so that it’s about 3/4 full with water and place your plant cutting in it, making sure the remaining top leaves are not submerged.

Leave the glass vessel in a spot that will receive moderate, indirect sunlight.




Check in on root growth

Give the plant cutting time to grow new roots, checking in on it regularly and replacing the water every few days.

You’ll know when your plant has started to propagate and is ready to be transferred into a potting mix when the root has grown by at least 1 inch.


Prepare the potting mix

Next, fill a suitable sized pot with potting mix and make sure it has suitable drainage holes. Create a hole in the centre of the potting soil for the cutting to sit in. Place the cutting in carefully and sprinkle a little potting mix around it, patting it in gently, and then place the pot in indirect sunlight.

Top tip: Do not use the cutting itself to create the hole, as this will damage it.


Maintain your new plant

New potted cutting

You will need to keep the soil moist for your plant propagation to work.

A water sprayer comes in handy when going through the plant propagation process, as you do not want to over-water your cutting.

As your cutting continues to grow, gradually expose it to more light. This will help your new plant to ‘harden off’, meaning it will gradually acclimatise to outdoor conditions.

After about 6-8 weeks, gently tug at your cutting and if you feel resistance, you’ll know there are roots.

At this point, you can transfer your new plant to a larger pot.


That’s how to propagate a plant. Don’t forget to upload a photo of your new plant to social media and tag us @homebase_uk




Writer and expert