Many houseplants produce several stems with roots attached to each stem. Each of these rooted stems can be divided from the parent houseplant to make a new plant.
You can divide to make two or more plants from any that have multiple stems coming up from the soil surface. Pull or cut the plants apart. Each section must have a cluster of roots. Pot each section in fresh potting mix.
Learn how to make your own potting mix.
1. To divide a multistemmed houseplant, first remove the plant from its pot. Early spring generally is the best time to divide plants. Press your thumbs into the middle of the plant, grab the plant with both hands, and tug it apart. If this doesn't work, remove the soil and try again. If that fails, cut the plant with a knife.
2. Keep a large clump of roots with each division. Immediately pot the new plants in potting soil. Keep the soil evenly moist for the next few weeks to help heal the injured roots.
3. Place plants out of direct light until they start to grow. Move them into brighter light over a period of 10 days.
- Bulb plants can be divided in a couple of ways. When a parent bulb produces small bulbs off to its side, simply divide the new bulbs from the old. Plant the new bulbs as you did the parent bulb.
- Some bulbs, such as achimenes, are made up of many scales that resemble pinecones. For new plants, pull off one of these scales, pot, and water.
- Caladium and tuberous begonia are among the houseplants that produce fat underground growths known as tubers. Cut the tubers into several pieces, making sure each division has an eye. Dust wounds with fungicide. Plant immediately.
- Gloxinia and cyclamen produce underground growth somewhat similar to potatoes. Cut sections containing at least one eye from these tubers, then pot. Each section will produce a new plant.
Continued on page 3: Taking Cuttings