We asked an expert for her list of the easiest houseplants to grow from cuttings. After all, for many of us, caring for houseplants, watching them thrive, and growing a houseplant collection are some of the simple joys of owning an indoor garden. And at this time of year, when we are less likely to be outdoors, they become all the more important to us.
Newer houseplant caretakers may not realize just how easy it is to propagate and grow new plants from an existing collection to share with friends and family (or keep your plant babies all to yourself!).
The good news is that you likely already own some of the best indoor plants to propagate making this a simple no-cost way to increase the size of your collection. In fact, the easiest houseplants to grow from cuttings often end to be some of the most popular plants found in people's homes.
Here, a houseplant expert reveals the five easiest houseplants to grow from cuttings and how to do it.
Jo Lambell's love of houseplants began in 2001 when she moved into her first home. After carrying a 6ft Monstera over her shoulder on the bus back from a well-known Swedish home furnishings retailer, she knew there must be a better way of getting plants delivered... which is when she had the idea to start Beards & Daisies. Jo believes that plants are the perfect way to update your home or office and is fanatical about plants.
The easiest plants to grow from cuttings
'If you’re new to plant propagation, then you may feel a little daunted at the idea of trying to grow new babies from your existing plants. But luckily, so many plants are incredibly easy to grow from cuttings – so much so, that you can’t go wrong!' says Jo Lambell.
'If you’re looking to start propagating, we’d always advise taking several cuttings from your plant where possible – this will give you the best chance of success, and you can even test different locations in your home to set up your ‘propagation station’, to find where your plants will thrive the most.
'Are you ready to turn your favorite plant into one, two, or even three new leafy friends? Let’s take a look at some of our favorite plants to grow from cuttings:'
1. Devil's Ivy
Devil's Ivy is an easy plant to take care of and is one of the best plants for hanging baskets around your home. You may also find information about Pothos plant care when searching for these trailing houseplants, but rest assured that these plants are one and the same.
'It comes as no surprise that this speedy grower takes so well to propagation,' Jo begins. 'You can expect to see shoots start to grow in just two weeks! We recommend submerging your cutting in water – then as soon as you see those roots starting to sprout, move your cutting into soil so it can continue to grow and grow! Growing plant babies doesn’t get much easier than that.'
Snip off four to six-inch segments of the stem from a healthy Devil's Ivy plant, ensuring the cutting has at least four leaves on the upper end of the vine. Place the cut end of the stems in a small vase or jar of water. Place the pot in a space that gets plenty of indirect sunlight. One month after the roots begin to show, transfer the plant to soil and treat them as any other houseplant.
2. Snake Plants
It is easy to learn how to propagate a snake plant as it simply involves placing a newly cut leaf in a container of water.
Choose a tall container such as a glass jar or vase that is tall and wide enough to hold the cut leaf upright as it develops roots. Cut a healthy leaf from the plant near the base using clean gardening shears before placing it so that the lower quarter of the leaf is submerged in water.
Change the water every two days as the roots begin to develop. Once the leaf has clear root growth transfer the leaf to a pot with good drainage and potting soil and place it in a space with plenty of indirect sunlight.
3. Monstera Deliciosa
Monstera Deliciosa plants are some of the world's most Instagrammable house plants and for good reason. Their sheer size and aesthetically shaped leaves make them the perfect cultural option for decorating with plants.
'You might be surprised to hear that this iconic plant is actually straightforward to grow from cuttings,' says Jo. 'Well-loved for this plant's iconic, tropical-looking leaves, once you’ve grown your first monstera baby, all of your friends and family will be asking you to grow one for them too!
'Your monstera can propagate either in soil or in water, but the benefit of growing your cutting in water is you can easily see when those new roots start to grow. If you decide to propagate your monstera now, during the dormant winter season, it could take a while to see roots – so be patient, and don’t be disheartened, good green things come to those who wait!'
4. Spider plant
Spider plants are one of the best low-maintenance indoor plants and frequently sprout 'spiderettes' – small clumps of leaves that are perfect for propagating at home. Because of this, Spider plants are some of the easiest houseplants to grow from cuttings.
While many houseplants develop roots easily enough in water, Spider plants are even easier as you can put spiderettes straight into a houseplant pot with drainage holes filled with potting soil and water regularly.
You can either leave the spiderette on the parent plant as it develops roots and split it from the runner later down the line, or split it immediately. The spiderette will root either way, however, if you plan on hanging the Spider plant, removing the spiderette is the easier option.
5. String of Hearts
A hardy indoor low-light plant, a String of hearts is a great option for beginners.
'String of hearts is a great plant to choose to grow from cuttings, as it’s pretty fast growing – you can expect to see the first sign of roots sprouting in as little as five days making it an incredibly rewarding plant to propagate,' Jo explains. 'Especially if you’re a first-time propagator! For this reason, we recommend popping your cutting into the water to root, so you can check to see for first signs of any sprouting. But make sure you wait until your cuttings roots are mature enough to be potted.'
The Unkillables: 40 resilient house plants for new plant parents, available at Amazon (opens in new tab)
'Houseplants not only make your space look stylish, they are good for both your physical and mental health. That is… until you kill one (or three). There is nothing more heartbreaking and soul-destroying than watching your beautiful green friend die a slow death in front of your very eyes, despite all of your love and attention. Was it too much water? Not enough? Some sort of insect infestation? The reasons for planticide can seem endless! In The Unkillables, Jo Lambell shares her houseplant knowledge so that even the biggest plant serial killers can have an abundant indoor garden.'
What is the easiest houseplant to propagate?
One of the easiest houseplants to propagate is the Pothos. These are extremely hardy plants and there is not much you can get wring when it comes to propagating the plant, especially given that you can propagate this plant in water alone.