Easy Peasy Propagation for Different Varieties of Philodendron
No matter what type of philodendron you have – trailing, crawling, climbing or upright – you can propagate your plant, quickly (depending on conditions) and easily. Today, I am going to outline the simplest ways, I have found, to do just that using Philodendron Brazil, Micans, Erubescens and a large variety of upright Philodendron, Named Phil. In my video, I also explain how to go about propagating the Philodendron Gloriosum, a large crawling variety. Of course there are MANY different ways to do this. If you have a favorite way of propagating philodendron, or have tried a new and exciting way, please let us know in the comments! We love to learn new ways of doing things – especially when it comes to growing new plants FOR FREE!
What you will need to get started depends on the method you are going to use. I will include all of the links to the materials as well as the mixture I use for my gardening soil at the bottom of the post.
Materials for Propagating in Water:
- Clean Scissors or Gardening Shears
- Filtered Water
- Ground Cinnamon
- A small glass container to put your cutting in
Materials for Propagating in Soil:
- Clean Scissors or Gardening Shears
- Ground Cinnamon
- A small pot with drainage
- A well draining soil Mixture (my soil mixture is listed at the end of this post)
- Rooting hormone (optional) I don’t usually need it for my Philodendrons
Materials for Propagating in Sphagnum Moss:
- Clean Scissors or Gardening Shears
- Ground Cinnamon
- A small pot or glass container
- Sphagnum Moss
- Protective gloves for handling the Sphagnum Moss is Recommended
- Rooting Hormone – (optional)
I don’t usually need it for my Philodendrons, however when I have used it, it is usually alongside sphagnum moss
Heart Leaf Philodendron or Philodendron Brazil Propagation in Water
One of the most common varieties of Philodendron that I have come across is the Heart Leaf (Philodendron Scandens) or Philodendron Brazil . They can be found in big box stores & even grocery stores. This plant thrives in most conditions including artificially lit offices, shaded living rooms & indirectly sunny kitchens, it can trail, hang in a pot or even loves to climb & cling to things when given the opportunity.
**Bonus: Philodendron is listed by NASA as a air purifying plant, however it is also considered toxic to children and pets – so make sure to keep it somewhere out of reach.
To propagate the Heart Leaf Philodendron or the Philodendron Brazil, (really any variety of vining philodendron) I am going to use a water propagation method, I like to see the roots grow! However, they root extremely easily, and is a resilient plant, so you can really use any of the methods for this variety.
The most important factor when propagating any Philodendron, is to make sure that you have a node and at least one leaf per cutting. Look at one of the legs or stems of your plant, and you should be able to locate numerous tiny brownish bumps sticking out of the side. (Usually around the place where a leaf has sprouted) these are where new roots will emerge from!
Using a clean pair of scissors or gardening shears, you are going to want to cut the plant below the node (on the side closer to the parent plant) at a 45 degree angle (this gives the most surface area for the new cutting to get water).
If your goal is a bushier, fuller looking plant, you are going to want to take multiple cuttings, and eventually, put them in the same pot. The cuttings can be taken from the same leg of the plant, if there are multiple leaves and nodes on that leg or stem. In the photo above, you can see the initial cutting that I made in my video of Philodendron Propagation. I actually cut this again, into multiple cuttings, because there was many leaves and nodes throughout the cutting.
After you make your cutting, I recommend dabbing ground cinnamon (yes, the kind of cinnamon you get in the spice aisle at the supermarket) on the spot where you made the cutting on the mom plant. This helps to heal and prevents disease and fungus.
You are then going to take your cutting(s) and place them in filtered water, with the cut part down , making sure that the node is submerged under the water. Try not to get the leaves in the water, as this can put the cutting at risk for disease and rot. If it has lower leaves as well us upper leaves on the cutting, you can remove the lower leaves to submerge the nodes.
Simply place the jar of water with your cuttings on a window sill, or somewhere it can get filtered / indirect light, and change the water every 3-5 days, until the roots start to form. This is usually a couple of weeks, but can take a couple of months depending on conditions.
The great thing about propagating in water – you get to watch the roots grow! Once the roots have started to form, you can transfer the new plant to a well draining soil mixture.
For Philodendron Micans, I do the exact same method, however I tend to use rooting hormone and put them in Sphagnum Moss instead of water. Simply put the rooting hormone on a plate or napkin, then dab your cutting into the hormone, before placing it in the moss. First soak the moss in water, then wring it out and wrap it around the cutting, and put it in a container. Keep the Sphagnum Moss moist while you are letting roots grow. I have also used the propagation in water method, and succeeded with that as well.
Philodendron Erubescens Propagation by cutting the Apical Meristem in Water or Soil
The Philodendron Erubescens (Blushing Philodendron) has beautiful unique features, including a beautiful wine colored stem, large deep green leaves, and sometimes, even leaves of different colors and variations. It is a tropical plant and can be propagated from stem cuttings in water or in soil, however it does have a unique component too it, which I think makes it an incredibly interesting variety, setting it apart from some other climbing Philodendron.
Did you know there is a reason why gardeners trim off the top of some plants to make it ‘fuller’? When a plant exhibits apical dominance (or one stem becoming the ‘leader’) it has the highest amount of auxin present and all the other leaves and stems seem to “bow down” to it or give it all their energy, and in turn, it does all the growing (essentially the plant becomes leggy and awkward). This is something that the Philodendron Erubescens (as well as similar varieties such as the Pink Princess) often exhibits! That leader stem is called the Apical Meristem.
When propagating Philodendron Erubescens or similar varieties, such as Philodendron Pink Princess and you cut this dominating node off, you remove the apical dominance and release the auxin, thus allowing for fuller growth in the lower parts of the plant (In addition, it can sometimes even promote more variegation and colors after you release the Auxin.) This part of the plant will also propagate much more easily, than other parts of the plant. While I have had success with cutting lower leaves off of mine, it was only after the cutting lost its leaves, and I thought it was dead, that it finally produced new growth. It was a very slow process, where as the cuttings I have taken from the Apical Meristem (the dominating node off the top) thrived & grew very quickly, never losing any leaves.
When you take cuttings from this plant, you can follow the same steps as I did with the vining Philodendrons, first make sure that you have a node and at least one leaf per cutting. On the stem of your plant, you should be able to locate these by sight or even by touch, they are the raised parts that look like the start of new roots, usually around where new leaves emerge from. **The stem of the plant is usually a little wider, almost bloated, where the nodes are as well.
Using a clean pair of scissors or gardening shears, you are going to want to cut the plant below the node (on the side closer to the parent plant) at a 45 degree angle (this gives the most surface area for the new cutting to get water). If you want to end up with a bushier, fuller looking plant, you are going to want to take multiple cuttings, and eventually, put them in the same pot. Depending on the size your parent plant is right now, and how many stems it has, you can take multiple cuttings from the same plant, at the same time, just make sure that you have at least one leaf and node per cutting. Or you can wait for new growth on the parent plant, and take another cutting later, then adding it to your original cutting.
After you make your cutting, I recommend dabbing ground cinnamon on the spot where you made the cutting on the mom plant. This helps to heal and prevents disease and fungus. If you are propagating in soil, you can put the cinnamon directly on the cutting, before placing it in soil as well.
With this variety, I don’t have a preference between using water propagation vs. soil propagation, as I haven’t seen a huge difference in the rate of growth with either. For water propagation, you are going to use the same method I described above, simply placing your cutting(s) in filtered water, making sure that the node is submerged under the water. You will want to try not to get the leaves in the water, so if it has lower leaves as well us upper leaves on the cutting, you can remove the lower leaves to submerge the nodes. Then place it in medium to bright indirect light, or under a grow light, while the roots form. Change the water every 3-5 days. Once the roots have formed (like in the photo below) you can transfer it to well draining soil.
If you choose to use the soil propagation method for this cutting, you are going to follow the same steps for the water propagation, however, you are going to put it in a well draining soil mix , in a pot with drainage. If you are using soil propagation, I also recommend using the ground cinnamon on the cutting as well as the mom plant to prevent root rot and fungus/ disease. If you’d rather, you can use a rooting hormone with this method instead of the cinnamon. Simply put the rooting hormone on a plate or napkin, then dab your cutting into the hormone, before placing it in the soil.
(a Large Upright Philodendron – exact variety unknown)
Phil is a large upright Philodendron, versus the prior two that are climbing/vining Philodendron. His stem is thick, and woodier and leaves huge, with bright, neon green and specks of red and coral on the stem. I am not sure exactly what he is, but he is easily one of my favorite plants. Such a bright statement to any room, with the same hardiness that other Philodendron varieties exhibit.
*If you know what Phil is, PLEASE let us know! (when I bought him, from a big box store, he was labeled as ‘Tropical Foliage’ – very descriptive)
When it comes to propagating larger stem varieties of Philodendron, you will notice there is nodes and aerial roots, coming out of the stem. (Similar to what you see with a Monstera Deliciosa). This also applies to crawling large varieties, such as the Philodendron Gloriosum. When you go to initially make your cutting (unless you decide to air layer instead) you will want to make sure that you have at least one leaf, preferably two, and a node with an aerial root.
You will need a sharper pair of scissors or garden shears for these, than you needed on the Heart Leaf Philodendron, as the stems are much thicker and tougher to go through.
Start by making a Cut below the node, at a 45 degree angle, and then dab the ground cinnamon on the mother plant as well as the cutting, and then stick the stem into a well draining soil mixture (I listed the mixture I have been using down below) in a pot with drainage. When you actually make the cutting, DON’T BE ALARMED if there is a ‘juice’ oozing out of the stem. You can see in my video of the propagation, that the same thing happened to me!
Then, give it a good drink of water, and set it in indirect light, so it can start to grow! Wah-lah, Phil Jr. is born!
Potting Soil Mixture:
- Miracle-Gro Moisture Control 25 qt. Potting Soil Mix: https://amzn.to/39RRBGE
- 8 qt. Perlite: https://amzn.to/2URyrgb
- Better-Gro 8 Qt. Phalaenopsis Mix (Chunky Peat Moss, Orchid Bark, Charcoal & Perlite): https://amzn.to/3e4gAdm
- Miracle-Gro Nature’s Care 8 qt. Organic Potting Soil Mix: https://amzn.to/39RXLa7
(Mixed all ingredients together in a large container, with a lid so I could save it for future uses)
- Digz Gardening Gloves: https://amzn.to/2XjXIkr
- Ground Cinnamon: https://amzn.to/39PVJaj
- Sphagnum Moss: https://amzn.to/34gTThF
- Rooting Hormone: https://amzn.to/2VeGpip
- Terracotta Pots: https://amzn.to/2VbIYBK
- Propagation Station: https://amzn.to/39RQUNy (this isn’t the exact model that I have, but one that appears very similar)
- Fiskars Soft Tip Garden Shear: https://amzn.to/2JOHTuk
- Fiskars Pruning Shears: https://amzn.to/2VdkGqL
- Fiskars Micro Tip Pruning Shears:https://amzn.to/2XhSp53
Camera Equipment used:
- Canon EOS M6 Camera: https://amzn.to/2Xhc7Oz
- Light Diffuser: https://amzn.to/34lgKIT
- Lav Mic: https://amzn.to/3e2VZWP
- Tripod: https://amzn.to/2xV2nyM
Whoa don’t ever use miracle grow! Monsantos is a monster killing our bees and totally screwing over mom n pop farmers do your research! Live ethically!
Thanks for your input, since posting this I have switched from using miracle grow completely! In my more recent posts you’ll see my soil mix has changed. I just haven’t gotten to putting and edit in all of the past posts. Have a great day!
Please please let ME know if you found out what variety the big one is it’s my favourite looking plant in a long time … could it be burle Marx or imperial green ? Thank you so much Abigail
I still haven’t found out unfortunately! Some people have suggested imperial green but I’m honestly not sure. It has grown so tall it’s out of control!
Phil is a philodendron giganteum
Thanks Pauline, I actually thought so too by the more mature leaves but as it has smaller leaves come in and in comparison to my gigantum the smaller leaves are much more elongated than the gigantum baby leaves! And the growth pattern is very vine like! It’s bazaar !
Hi I have a "phil" at home and wasn't sure what type it was until I was at my friends place and he has 3 and like mine close to 5 feet tall. It turns out that this variety is known as "Domesticum"
Ah thank you SO MUCH!
Could you tell me why some of the tips of the leaves on my plant tur dark brown? I water my plant twice a week and fertilize about every week. Except for that my plant grows and looks good. What should I do? I do cut the brown tip off.