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How to propagate an umbrella plant

Want to turn your schefflera plant into several plants?! Here is a step by step guide on how to propagate an umbrella plant the easy way!

Umbrella plants are super popular indoor houseplants. Umbrella plant is the common name for the Schefflera plant or the dwarf umbrella tree.

This plant is great because it does well in normal home lighting and moisture conditions.

It has beautiful, long green leaves that spread out to look like the spokes of an umbrella.

Check out our complete umbrella plant care guide!

Today we are going to chat about propagating schefflera and everything you need to know about umbrella tree propagation!

Why should you propagate an umbrella plant?

Propagating the dwarf umbrella tree has a few benefits:

  1. Prune and shape your plant
  2. Cut off leggy branches to encourage bushier growth
  3. Make new baby plants!

Printable Umbrella Plant care guide

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Umbrella Plant plant care guide

Can you start an umbrella plant from a cutting?

Umbrella plants can be grown either from seed or from cuttings. If you already have an existing plant, taking a cutting is going to be faster and more satisfying compared to the slow process of growing from seed!

new growth on an umbrella plant

Can you grow an umbrella plant from a cutting?

Yes, it is very easy to take a cutting and grow it into a new baby umbrella plant.

When is the best time to propagate an umbrella plant?

Spring and summer are the growing season for these plants, so that is when your plants will root the fastest. However, you can propagate indoor plants year round successfully.

potted umbrella plant on a table

Can you propagate an umbrella plant in water?

Umbrella plant cuttings can be rooted in either moist soil or water.

When rooting in soil, I like to cover the whole thing loosely with a plastic bag. This creates a greenhouse effect that keeps the humidity high and promotes root growth.

Will schefflera cuttings root in water?

I actually prefer to root my umbrella plant cuttings in water. This makes it super simple to monitor root growth and be sure the cutting is staying wet enough.

umbrella plant cutting

How do you take cuttings from an umbrella plant?

Most dwarf umbrella plants are thin enough that cuttings can be taken with sharp scissors. You can use garden shears if necessary. Clean scissors with alcohol to reduce the risk of any sort of infection in your cut.

Where do you cut umbrella plant for propagation?

You can cut an umbrella plant pretty much anywhere to create a cutting. You need a leaf node – those brown spots on the stem – which is where the new roots will grow from. Umbrella plant stems are covered with them, so any cutting at least a few inches long will have several nodes!

How do you propagate leggy umbrella plants?

Leggy umbrella plants have long branches without any leaves on them – or just leaves on the tips. Pruning the stems by cutting them back will encourage the branches to re-grow with bushier leaf growth.

Then, you can take the pieces that you cut off and propagate them in either water or soil!

As a result, your parent plant will grow fuller and you will root new baby umbrella plants to fill out your pot or share with a friend. Win-win!

rooted umbrella plant cutting

Can you grow an umbrella plant from a leaf?

You will need at least a portion of stem on your cutting for it to successfully root and grow into a mature plant.

Can you propagate umbrella plants via division?

Umbrella plants only have one stem – they are more like trees than bushy plants – so you cannot divide them.

how to propagate umbrella plants

How to propagate an umbrella plant

You always want to take cuttings from a healthy plant. Don’t choose a branch with drooping or dropping leaves.

Take cuttings that are 4-6 inches long. Remember that the parent plant will grow new leaves and branches where you cut it, so plan accordingly.

You can dip the cuttings into rooting hormone to speed up the rooting process. This works particularly well when rooting in potting mix soil.

When rooting in soil, cover the pot loosely with a plastic bag. This creates a greenhouse effect and helps to keep humidity high!

Place cuttings in indirect light until roots form.

A note on rooting hormone

Rooting hormone is a substance used in plant propagation to encourage the rapid development of roots from plant cuttings. It contains growth-promoting hormones, usually auxins, that stimulate cell division and root formation.

Rooting hormone is optional but will often speed up the rooting process.

Typically, you dip a cutting into rooting hormone after cutting it off the parent plant and before sticking it in water or soil.

I do not usually use rooting hormone when rooting in water because it washes off. I almost always use it when rooting in soil.

Caring for propagated umbrella plants

Yield: 1 umbrella plant cutting

How to propagate an umbrella plant

rooted umbrella plant cutting

Here's how easy it is to propagate an umbrella plant!

Active Time 2 minutes
Total Time 2 minutes
Difficulty easy


  • Healthy umbrella plant
  • Rooting hormone (optional)


  • Cup or jar of water
  • Scissors


  1. Select a healthy branch of your umbrella plant. Ideally choose a branch with active new growth.
  2. Use your scissors to cut a 4 to 6 inch section off of the plant.
  3. Optional: wet cutting and dip the cut end in rooting hormone
  4. Place in water or moist soil. Place in bright indirect light.
  5. Optional: cover loosely with a plastic bag (mostly just when propagating in potting soil)
  6. Change water weekly. Roots take 1-2 months to form.
  7. Once the roots are 2 inches long, move to soil.

Any questions about schefflera propagation?!

Before you go…

Is your umbrella plant looking leggy or awkwardly shaped? Time to prune it! Check out our complete guide on how to prune an umbrella plant!

Thanks for reading!

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