How To Propagate Philodendron
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How To Propagate Philodendron

Welcome to our guide to how to propagate philodendron… In general philodendrons are easy to propagate in soil, leca sphagnum moss and water. You need two nodes, one bare for the roots to grow from and one with foliage. Make a clean cut and then add the cutting to the medium, and wait 2 months before potting them up in soil.


Here we run down how to propagate philodendron. These beautiful and popular tropical houseplant can be relatively easily propagated with cuttings either in water, soil or sphagnum moss. Soil requires the least work (you just stick the cuttings in!), water is great as you can monitor root growth, and with sphagnum you get the best of both worlds and without the higher risk of root rot you get with soil.

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Philodendron Propagation In Water

Philodendrons and can be easily propagated in water by taking a node cutting, following these steps.

Time needed: 2 hours

To propagate a philodendron in water:

  1. Take the cutting

    Get at least 2 nodes in it (the wider joints in the stems from which leaves grow from), making sure there is at least one or two leaves on the top node.

  2. Trim the leaves from the lower node

    Take them off, leaving leaves on the upper node only. Then set them aside for a few hours so the wounds callous over.

  3. Get a jar of water

    Fill a jar with water that has been let to stand overnight (I use tap water filtered with a britta filter).

  4. Add the cutting to the jar

    Fill a jar with water that has been let to stand overnight (I use tap water filtered with a britta filter).

  5. Put it somewhere bright and warm

    Put the cutting in the jar and put it in bright and warm window sill with plenty of indirect sunlight.

  6. Wait for it to root

    Wait for the roots to grow, it should take about 2 months. Top up the water occasionally, only replace it if it goes cloudy (it should not go cloudy if you take care to not let leaves rot in it).

  7. Move it to soil or keep it in water

    Once the roots have grown well, pot the cutting up in soil. You can keep it in water ongoing, they look good but will grow slower than in water.

I find that water is the best medium to root a philodendron in, as long as the wounds are healed over first so you do not get rot.

For more info see our step by step water propagation guides: Philodendron Gloriosum Propagation In Water, Philodendron Melanochrysum Propagation In Water, Philodendron Micans Water Propagation, Philodendron Verrucosum Propagation In Water, Philodendron Burle Marx Water Propagation, Can Philodendron Grow In Water?

Philodendron Melanochrysum propagation in water

Philodendron Propagation In Soil

You can take cuttings from philodendrons and plant them directly in soil. Make sure the cuttings have two nodes, take the leaves from the bottom one and leave them on the top one. You want to wait for a few hours so the open wounds have healed over, this will reduce the chance of rot.

Philodendron Burle Marx Propagation In Soil

Then place the cuttings in soil. It should take about 2 months until the roots grow. It’s a good idea to keep them humid during this stage, I put a bag around the pot, but leave it slightly open as totally closed can lead to rot (see the image below). Then, once the branches start to grow, it means the roots underneath are getting well established.

For more on Philodendron soil see our guide on what to buy or how to make your own: Philodendron Soil. Please also check out our specific philodendron soil propagation guides, in which I propagate my own plants with step by step instructions and pictures: Philodendron Melanochrysum Propagation In Soil, Philodendron Burle Marx Propagation In Soil

Humidity bag

Philodendron Propagation In Sphagnum Moss

Sphagnum moss is the best medium for rooting philodendron, as the roots are kept wet but they also get air, and they are not subjected to the bacteria of soil, so rot is much less likely. Soak the moss in water and fill up a clear jar with it and put 2-node cuttings in it, making sure the bottom node is leafless and under the moss and the top node above the moss has some leaves. You can see root growth after a while when the roots touch the side of the jar. Roots can grow very quickly with this method and often the cutting can be planted up in soil after a a month of sphagnum growth. Just keep the plant well lit (but not direct sunlight) and warm.

For more info see my more in depth guides: How To Prepare Sphagnum Moss For Propagation, Philodendron Gloriosum Propagation In Moss, Philodendron Melanochrysum Propagation In Moss, Philodendron Micans Propagation In Sphagnum Moss, Philodendron Burle Marx Propagation In Moss.

Philodendron Micans Propagation In Sphagnum Moss

Using LECA To Propagate Philodendrons

I love using leca if I have a lot of props to do as it is so quick. Especially with philodendrons. First of all I take cuttings and let them callous over for a couple of hours, then I root them in water for a month by putting all of them in a jar.

After a month I put them in plastic cups with leca. The reason it is so quick is I can just hold the cutting in the right place in the cup and then pour in some leca with a another cup full of leca, then its done. So 10 or 20 cuttings can be planted very quickly.

With LECA you want the bottom of the cutting to be an inch or from the bottom of the cup, then when you water it you can fill that bottom inch with water and the leca will take the water it needs without the water directly touching the roots, the roots. The roots will suck water out of the leca when they need it, and the leca will wick up the water it needs from the bottom of the cup. You want to keep the water level in the bottom at one or two centimeters all the time, so the leca can wick up what it needs.

Having said that, the first time I water the cuttings in leca, I fill the water up to the top and it is used slowly, this is to help the roots transition slowly from water to leca. But then after that initial watering, I keep the water to one or two centimeters from the bottom of the cup, and the leca can wick up what it needs.

Note: before using leca you need to wash it and soak it. I use normally fill a bowl with leca and water and rinse it a few times under the tap, tipping all the water out each time, then on the last time I fill the bowl up with filtered tap water and le the leca soak in it for a an hour at least before using it. Then you have clean, pre-soaked leca for use.

See also: Philodendron Gloriosum Propagation In Leca, Philodendron Melanochrysum Propagation In Leca, Philodendron Burle Marx Propagation In Leca, How To Use Leca For Houseplants.

philodendron props in leca

Where To Cut A Philodendron

Philodendron cuttings need at least one node. You can see in the image below of a gloriosum chop and prop that the node is the wider part of the stem that growth comes from. Stems grow from it normally, but when you take a cutting and propagate it, it will be the point that roots grow from. Without a node the cutting will not root. You can take cuttings with more than one node, but you’ll need at least one minimum.

Gloriosum nodes

Philodendron Propagation – FAQs

Philodendron Propagation Water Vs Soil

Philodendrons root well in soil and water, so water is the best way to go, because you can monitor root growth if you use a clear container, and not waster soil on cuttings that fail. Personally I would use sphagnum moss as you can still monitor root growth to an extent and the roots get air to them, but without the higher root rot danger you can get from soil.

Propagating Burle Marx Nodes

more frequently asked questions About Propagating Philodendrons:

Can You Propagate Philodendron In Water?

You can propagate a philodendron in water, using node cuttings. They look great as a decoration too.

When Should I Propagate Philodendron?

If your plant has got too big for it’s space you can cut it back and use the cuttings to propagate for more plants. You can do this year round, the best time is in spring before the gowning season.

How Long Does It Take For Philodendron To Root In Water?

It can take up to to 2 weeks for cuttings to start to root and 2 months for them to be ready to pot up.

How Long Do Philodendron Cuttings Take To Root?

They can take up to 2 months to root, for best results use sphagnum moss for a month or so before potting up in soil

How Do You Propagate Xanadu Philodendron?

You can propagate xanadus with cuttings like other philodendrons in water or sphagnum moss for example, but make sure to cut leaves off the stem and just leave the ones at the top so they are not under the potting medium as this can cause rotting.

How Do You Propagate Philodendron Bipinnatifidum

Philodendron Bipinnatifidum can be propagated the same way as other philodendrons using node cuttings with 2 nodes and then rooting in soil/water/sphagnum moss before potting up to soil in a month or so.

Melanochrysum propagation

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