Propagating plants can be a fun and rewarding hobby for gardeners of all levels.
It allows us to grow new plants from existing ones, often at a fraction of the cost of buying a new plant.
In the case of the Monstera deliciosa, also known as the Swiss cheese plant, propagating allows us to create new plants that can be used to fill in gaps in our indoor gardens, or given as gifts to friends and family.
When is the best time to propagate Monstera deliciosa cuttings?
The best time to propagate a Monstera deliciosa is during the growing season, which is typically from spring to early fall. This is when the plant is actively growing and producing new leaves and stems, making it the perfect time to take cuttings. Avoid taking cuttings during the winter months when the plant is dormant, as the chances of success are much lower.
How to take a Monstera cutting
To propagate a Monstera deliciosa, you will first need to take a cutting from the plant. Here’s how:
- Choose a healthy stem on the plant that has at least two or three leaves.
- Using a sharp, clean pair of scissors or a knife, cut the stem about 6 inches below the bottom leaf.
- Remove the bottom leaves from the cutting, leaving at least one or two leaves at the top.
- Dip the cut end of the stem in rooting hormone, which will help encourage root growth.
How to propagate Monstera deliciosa from a cutting
There are several methods you can use to propagate a Monstera deliciosa from a cutting, including water, soil, and air layering. Here’s how to do it:
Growing a Monstera cutting in water
One of the easiest ways to propagate a Monstera deliciosa cutting is by growing it in water. Here’s how:
- Fill a small jar or glass with water and place the cutting in it, making sure the cut end is submerged in the water.
- Place the jar in a warm, sunny location and change the water every few days to prevent it from becoming stagnant.
- Within a few weeks, you should start to see small roots forming at the base of the cutting.
- Once the roots are about an inch long, you can transplant the cutting into soil.
Propagating Monstera deliciosa cuttings in soil
Another method for propagating a Monstera deliciosa cutting is by planting it directly in soil. Here’s how:
- Fill a small pot with a well-draining soil mix, such as a mixture of peat moss and perlite.
- Make a small hole in the soil with your finger and insert the cutting, making sure the cut end is fully submerged in the soil.
- Water the soil gently to moisten it, and place the pot in a warm, sunny location.
- Keep the soil moist but not soggy, and within a few weeks, you should start to see new growth emerging from the cutting.
Using air layering to propagate a Monstera deliciosa
Air layering is another method for propagating a Monstera deliciosa that can be used when the plant is too large to take cuttings from. Here’s how:
- Choose a healthy stem on the plant that is at least one year old and has several leaves.
- Using a sharp knife, make a shallow cut about halfway through the stem, about 4-6 inches below a leaf node.
- Remove the bark from the cutting in a small, circular area around the cut.
- Fill the area with rooting hormone, and wrap the entire area with a small piece of damp sphagnum moss.
- Cover the moss with a plastic bag and secure it with twist ties or rubber bands.
- Keep the area moist by misting it with water every few days.
- Within a few weeks, you should start to see roots forming inside the plastic bag.
- Once the roots are about an inch long, you can cut the stem just below the roots and pot it up in soil.
What parts of a Monstera will propagate?
The most common parts of a Monstera deliciosa that are used for propagation are stem cuttings. These can be taken from any part of the plant and will typically produce new roots and leaves when propagated in water or soil.
What parts of Monstera won’t propagate?
Leaf cuttings are not typically successful for propagating Monstera deliciosa plants. While it is possible to propagate some plants using just a leaf and a rooting hormone, this method is not effective for Monstera deliciosa. Instead, it is best to use stem cuttings for successful propagation.
What will help a Monstera cutting establish quickly?
There are several factors that can help a Monstera deliciosa cutting establish quickly and successfully:
- Using rooting hormone: Rooting hormone is a plant growth regulator that helps stimulate root growth in cuttings. It is especially helpful when propagating plants that are slow to root, such as Monstera deliciosa.
- Maintaining the right temperature and humidity: Monstera deliciosa plants prefer warm, humid environments, so it is important to keep the temperature and humidity level consistent when propagating. A warm, sunny location and regular misting can help keep the cutting moist and encourage healthy growth.
- Providing proper watering: It is important to keep the soil or water in which the cutting is growing moist, but not soggy. Overwatering can lead to rot and kill the cutting, while under watering can cause the cutting to wilt and die.
What affects propagation success?
There are several factors that can affect the success of propagating a Monstera deliciosa:
- Age of the cutting: Younger, more recently matured stem cuttings are typically more successful at rooting than older, woodier cuttings.
- Health of the parent plant: Cuttings taken from healthy, well-established Monstera deliciosa plants are more likely to root and grow successfully than those taken from stressed or diseased plants.
- Quality of the rooting hormone: Using a high-quality rooting hormone can greatly increase the chances of success when propagating a Monstera deliciosa cutting.
- Environment: Proper temperature, humidity, and watering are all important for successful propagation. If any of these factors are not ideal, it can affect the success of the cutting.
If you are having trouble propagating your Monstera deliciosa cutting, there are a few things you can try:
- Make sure the cutting is healthy and free of any diseases or pests.
- Check the temperature and humidity in the area where the cutting is being propagated. It should be warm and humid, but not too hot or too wet.
- Make sure the soil or water is moist, but not soggy. Overwatering can cause the cutting to rot, while under watering can cause it to wilt and die.
- Check the rooting hormone to make sure it is fresh and of good quality.
- Be patient! It can take several weeks or even months for a Monstera deliciosa cutting to root and establish. Don’t give up too soon!