Succulents are great plants that are very easy to propagate. They make great plants for your backyard, and really adorable gifts as well.
This technique consists of propagating succulents from leaves. It requires a couple of supplies and can be done in a few steps.
The first thing to do is to cut off a leaf. Not every leaf will take, so make sure it is a healthy one. This leaf will sprout new roots that will eventually grow into new succulents.
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First Step: Remove and Dry Your Leaves
1. Pick Your Leaves:
The small and young succulents are often on the top, you do not want to use these. Instead, take leaves from the bottom.
If you notice a long and kind of woody stem at the bottom of your succulent, you will know it is the right time to propagate it. This happens because of the lack of light. So, to reach more light, the plant grows taller and the space between the leaves becomes wider.
2. Choose Healthy Leaves:
To increase your chances of succeeding the propagation; you need to make sure that your succulent leaf is healthy.
Healthy leaves are usually full ones with a uniformed color and a plump look. They are also free of any spots or marks. Avoid any ripped or torn leaves.
3. Remove Your Leaves:
The best way to remove your succulent leave is to use your fingers.
Use your thumb and forefinger to grab the leaf near the base of the stem, and then gently remove it to avoid breakage. If the entire base does not come off the stem, the leaf will die.
4. Dry Your Leaves:
If you put your leaves in the soil before they dry, they will not have the chance to grow into plants and will die.
So, after removing them from the stem, place them on a dry towel, somewhere exposed to indirect sunlight. Drying usually takes from three to seven days.
Second Step: Sprout New Roots
1. Dip Your Leaves in Rooting Hormone:
To increase the chances of succeeding the propagation and decrease the time it takes, consider dipping your leaves in a rooting hormone. However, this step is not a necessary one.
You can use honey as a natural rooting hormone. Fill a bottle cap with some of it. Moisten the end of your leaf by wiping it with a slightly wet towel, and then dip it into the bottle cap full of honey.
2. Put Your Leaves on a Bed of Soil:
It is very important to put your leaves on an appropriate well-draining soil to allow them to thrive.
3. Expose Your Leaves To Indirect Sunlight:
It is known that succulents need a lot of sun to thrive since they are desert-dwelling plants. But, propagating them from leaves requires indirect sunlight, until the plant grows.
4. Mist Your Leaves Every Day:
Too much water might kill your rooting succulents. So, although they need a bit more water than grown succulents, do not risk watering them too much and use a spray to only mist them and moisten the soil every day
You might not need to mist your succulents at all if the air around the tray is humid.
5. Bury The Roots With Soil
The leaves will start to grow into little roots in about four weeks. To avoid they dry out, bury them with a thin layer of soil. You can only transplant the new plant into a new individual pot after it starts growing its own leaves.
Third Step: Grow the New Succulents
1. Remove the Original Leaves:
Now that your new succulents are growing new leaves, you should get rid of the original leaf you used to propagate and take it away from the new plant. Do it carefully to avoid damaging the new young roots.
2. Prepare Your Pots:
It is now time to transplant each of your new succulents into a new individual pot to allow them to grow bigger. Succulents prefer small pots than large ones.
Prepare your pots and make sure you boreholes in the bottom to assure good drainage.
In the bottom, put the first layer of pebble to improve the drainage. Then, fill the rest of the pot with succulent soil. You can also make your own succulent mix by combining sand, perlite and potting soil.
3. Transplant Your Succulents
The succulents will take about a year to reach a normal size. You can keep transplanting them into larger pots as they grow.
4. Water your Succulents
Watering succulents requires that the soil is fully wet. Therefore, daily misting will not be enough. For that, switch the daily misting into a watering habit but only whenever the soil completely dries out.
5. Expose your Succulents to The Sun
transplanting your succulents, put them in a place exposed to the most of
direct sunlight. Next to a window with no protection (a tree or a window shade)
facing east or south is perfect.
Propagation From Pups or Offshoots
Using leaves is not the only way to propagate succulents. But not all of the succulents produce pups and offshoots; therefore, not all of the succulents can propagate this way. Among the many succulents that produce pups or offshoots we have: Hens and chicks, Aloe, and Cacti species.
This way is pretty much the easiest and fastest one to propagate succulents; they pretty much spread on their own.
Not only removing the pups and offshoots give you multiple new plants, but they also improve the health of the original mother plant, because that way it focuses its energy on growing itself instead of carrying the pups.
As you can see, propagating succulents is very easy and fun. We hope that now you can grow your own succulents and enjoy turning one small plant into multiple baby plants