Prayer plant propagation is as straight forward as taking node cuttings and rooting them in water. I’ve done this a lot and have a few prayer plants around my home. We cover all you need to know about calathea maranta propagation…
Prayer Plant Propagation
Prayer Plants, aka Marantas are striking looking plants. Water propagation is definitely the way to go for these beauties. Here is our guide to Prayer Plant Propagation. Just to be clear often Calatheas get called prayer plants, but here we are referring to Maranta, for more info on calatheas please see our Calathea Care articles.
Prayer Plant/Maranta Propagation Step By Step:
Follow these steps to take a cutting and propagate into a new plant with water:
- Find a node, this is where the plant splits and grows two branches from one. On a maranta the plant is thin before the node, and fat at the node. you want to cut it a centimeter or two below the node. You don’t want a cutting that’s too small or a huge cutting that will take up a lot of energy to grow – I like a cutting with 2 to 4 leaves on it.
- Put the cutting in a jar of filtered water (which is at room temperature). My Marantas never seem to do very well with tap water to be honest, they are quite sensitive in this regard.
- Put the cutting near a window but not in direct sunlight to give it as much light as possible without burning it.
- After a month or so of root growth put the Maranta cutting in soil. Marantas like a peat-based or general purpose potting mix. They do not need a lot of sunlight and can be relatively far back from the window.
For more on this type of propagation, see our Water Propagation article.
How Do You Divide Marantas?
You can propagate maranta by division, as well as water propagation you can split a prayer plant at the roots. Splitting the plants is fairly easy and can be done by hand without the use of a knife, just be careful of the roots. You just take your plant out of it’s pot, then gently pull the plant apart gently into two or more separate plants, taking care to keep the root system in tact. Then pot the plants up separately. A good time to do this is when you repot the plant.
How To Propagate Prayer Plant In Soil
You can root prayer plants in soil, stick the cuttings so the nodes are buried in the soil, and then keep it humid to encourage rooting. You can put the whole pot inside a bigger container, or a plastic bag. Put some holes in the bag so that the air can get in and out, which helps to avoid rot. It should root in a few weeks and be growing in a couple of months.
Maranta Propagation With Sphagnum Moss
Sphagnum moss is a great medium for propagation as it keeps the roots moist to encourage root growth, but there is no soil so chance of root rot reduces dramatically. To propagate a maranta using sphagnum moss follow these steps:
- Step 1: take a cutting below a node and make sure to include 2 or 3 leaves at least.
- Step 2: place the cutting in a cup of soaked sphagnum moss. Make sure the node is wrapped in the moss.
- Step 3: keep the cutting moist and the roots should grow well within two months. If you use a transparent cup you can see the root growth
- Step 4: pot the cutting up in a soil pot.
Frequently Asked Questions
They can sprout new leaves from the nodes when cut back.
They flower with small flowers on very thin stalks. You can cut them off as they are not remarkable but they can take energy away from the rest of the plant and slow leaf growth.
They can die after 5 years, but they propagate quickly and are replaced by new growth so you probably won’t notice one part of the plant dying.
They droop when not given enough water. Check the soil and if it is dry, give them a soaking.
They turn brown when they are underwatered or sun burnt, so make sure it is watered properly and is not getting too much sun.
They curl up from lack of humidity. You really want to keep this plant in a humid room. Keep it close to other plants can increase the humidity too, as they give off moisture.
The best place to cut the maranta is to include a node and at least two nodes. You can cut them an inch or a couple of centimeters below a node, this is where the branch has a slightly sider ‘knuckle’ and more than one branch often grows from it.
It will take at least a month and up to 8 weeks to get root growth big enough to pot the cutting up into soil.
You can mist a prayer plant to keep it humid as these plants love humidity. Or you can stand the plant on a saucer of small pebbles and fill it with water to add humidity around the plant. I have lost a prayer plant in the past due humidity not being high enough.
It will start to root with a week, but it can take a couple of months for the roots to establish and new leaf growth to start.
You cannot propagate a prayer plant from just a leaf, you need at least one node.
Yes, as we mentioned, you can root a player plant in water, and let it grow there indefinitely, make sure the cutting has at least one node under the water where roots will grow from and 2 or 3 leaves above water.
Good luck on your prayer plant propagation quest. Tag us on Instagram with any new plants you make, would love to see how you get on.