“How to propagate succulents?” is a frequently asked question by our followers. If we can produce more succulent babies on our own, we will have a great sense of accomplishment.
Here we’d like to share an ultimate step-by-step guide with you.
Let’s dive right in.
Table of Contents
Why should we learn propagation?
Except for the reason that we just like it, there are several situations we need to propagate our succulents.
- When they grow leggy, we need to propagate them from cutting stems so that they can be healthy again.
- When rot occurs, we will also need to see if propagation can save them again.
- Sometimes their leaves fall off by accident.
- Their roots get unhealthy to absorb the nutrition, we also need to use this method to deal with it.
- Last but not least, when you want them to grow in group succulents, you can also use this method to help.
Does it sound like something you’d like to try?
When to propagate?
There are lots of articles about how to propagate succulents, and we rarely mention proper time.
The temperature of 20℃-25℃ (68℉-77℉) and humidity of 55%-65% are the ideal conditions, which is the best time and environment to propagate. You can even leave them on a table, and they still grow roots.
Generally speaking, spring and autumn are better times to propagate these babies.
Succulent Propagation Ways
There are mainly two ways: propagate from leaves and propagate from stem cutting.
Let’s see what Becky did when she found out one of her succulents was going leggy.
Becky saved the leggy Echeveria Peach Pride and got one more of it later. What about propagating succulents from leaves cutting?
Some species work well with both ways, but some can only go with one method. We will discuss this in another post later. Sometimes, we can do some experiments to figure out. It’s a really fun process. There are some places selling succulent baby sets if you don’t want to start with your own succulents at home.
After getting a general idea of both ways, it’s time for me to walk you through the step-by-step process.
Step #1: Get a nice and healthy leaf
Sounds easy, right? But it’s the first important element for propagation.
- Choose a healthy leaf on a healthy mother plant. Easy one.
- Gently twist them off, and make sure the leaves are complete. This one is a little tricky.
Please refer to the below picture, and make sure to check if the leaves are complete after you twist them off.
Want to have a try now, right? Click here to check the 10 easy to propagate succulents we found.
From cutting stem.
Aeoniums are very charming ones, and they can only work with propagating from cutting stems. If you are having aeoniums and also want to enjoy the fun and success of propagation, here’s what to do in this step:
- Choose the one you want to propagate. Most of the time, the leggy one, the little rot one, the one with an unsatisfied shape…
- Prepare a sharp scissor, and clean it with an alcohol pad，which can prevent wound infection on succulents.
- Give it a cut. Cut it off from the top or cut off a new offshoot.
If you have healthy and complete leaves now, you need to give it some time to heal the wound.
Which lead us to Step# 2.
Step#2 : Let the leaves and cutting heal the wound.
Lisa tried her propagation for the first time: she cut leaves successfully and placed them on top of the soil at once. After a few days, she found out they all rot. There might be a lot of reasons. But one common reason is that the fresh cutting leaves are having wound, and they are easily be infected by bacteria in the soil.
So, don’t hurry. Let’s place them in a shaded place for 2-3 days. And it’s the same for cuttings. We don’t spray water or expose them to sunshine.
Once they dry out a bit, here’s what to do next:
Step#3: Place them in a pot or container
1.Choose a container. Unlike grown-up succulents, these babies can be grown in wooden cases, meal boxes, and even yogurt boxes because we will pot them when they grow bigger with roots.
2.Prepare the soil in the pot. We often hear that succulents love well-draining soil, and for babies and propagation, we need to adjust the ratio of organic to mineral material. This is because they need nutrition to grow. So, I like to raise the organic part to about 70-80%. Check out our ultimate guide about succulent soil.
Below is a general ratio we are using. We can adjust according to the local climate.
It’s time for step 4.
Step #4: Put them in soil.
There is a small step rarely mentioned and noticed. And it’s also essential.
Before you place the cutting leaves or stems into the soil, please make sure the soil is a little moist before placing them.
Please check our picture below. Our experience is to make succulent babies slightly into the soil but does not bury them.
If you want to know more about soil, please click here for our ultimate soil guide.
Pretty cool. We are almost done.
How to water and care of propagation babies?
Our friends often ask us questions about watering propagation babies. And this is the most challenging question to answer because it depends on the environment and climate. But here are some general suggestions for helping you get ideas. If you need a full guide on succulent water hacks, please check here.
Babies need more water than grown ones. As the soil is moist before we place them, and the succulent babies don’t have roots, we do not have to water them in the first week.
And then we can water them (not thorough water like grown one) slightly on the soil once to twice a week.
Use a squeeze bottle to water slightly on the soil. And do not water on leaves (they will easily rot if the environment is humid).
Do not put them under direct sunshine. We only expose them to direct sunlight after they grow roots. And we extend their indirect sunshine time gradually, 1 hour at the very beginning, one more hour after three days, and keep extending the time.
Last but not least, maintain adequate airflow!
OK, that’s pretty much it. When you master this, you will need more and more pots to grow your succulent babies. And your succulent garden begins from this very leaf.
Q1: How long do they grow roots and babies?
They have a different time to grow roots under different climates. And succulent species differ from one to another.
Let’s be patient and wait for their growth. Here we’d like to share a record with you.
Q2: Do I need to pluck the mother leaves when babies grow?
If the mother leaves begin to rot, I think it’s better to pluck them. If they are still healthy, they can provide nutrients to babies, so we don’t have to do anything.
Q3: Can all the succulents be propagated?
Not all of them. Please check here to know specific succulent features. We are updating weekly.
Do you have any propagation tips or tricks? Please share them with us in the comments below!