Discover the effortless art of plant propagation with our guide on plants that grow from cuttings in water. Learn the simple steps and explore a variety of plants, from Pothos to Basil, that thrive in this easy, no-fuss method of cultivation.
Growing roots on cuttings of plants in water is the very easiest way to propagate plants.
Seriously – it’s super simple.
Many plants are genetically designed to sprout roots when they are sitting in water.
So, you can use that to your advantage as a houseplant gardener!
Simply cut a cutting from your parent plant and place it in water, and roots will form.
How to grow plants in water
You don’t need special tools or skills to grow plants in water. All you need is:
- A starter plant
- Sharp clean scissors
- A jar or cup of water
- Indirect light – such as a sunny window
You will take a cutting from your starter plant and place it in water in indirect sunlight. Check the water regularly and replace or refill it as needed. You should have roots in a few weeks!
Here are the steps to root cuttings in water:
- Identify a healthy branch, preferably with new growth
- Cut off a 3-9 inch segment with at least 1 node on it
- Remove all but the final leaf
- Place in water
- Place in bright, indirect light
- Change the water weekly or when the jar gets foggy
- Once the roots are 2-3 inches long, you can decide to keep it in water or transplant it to soil!
Benefits of rooting plants in water
Rooting plants in water means you get to observe root growth firsthand, see faster results, and have the ability to propagate multiple plants from a single parent plant!
What plants will root from cuttings in water?
In general, for propagating in water, you want to look for plants with green stems. These green, soft stems are most likely to grow roots in water.
Plants with woody stems do not propagate easily in water.
Additionally, leaves will not typically root in water without any stem attached to them. There must be stem – and a leaf node – for the cutting to grow roots.
Here is a list of plants that grow from cuttings in water:
- Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum): Spider plants are known for their arching leaves and spider-like offshoots, which can easily root in water.
- English Ivy (Hedera helix): English ivy cuttings, particularly those with multiple nodes, can thrive when placed in water, making them ideal for indoor greenery.
- Pothos: Pothos cuttings can be placed in water, allowing them to develop roots easily. This method is especially suitable for beginners and indoor gardeners, providing a lush, trailing plant with heart-shaped leaves.
- Philodendron: Philodendron cuttings root well in water, making them ideal for indoor propagation. With their distinctive heart-shaped leaves and climbing habit, philodendrons are a popular choice for those seeking low-maintenance plants with varied leaf shapes and variegation.
- Waffle Plant: Waffle plant cuttings can be propagated in water, enabling easy root development. These plants are characterized by their unique waffle-like textured leaves, often with purple undersides, making them an attractive choice for indoor gardens and terrariums.
- Coleus: Coleus cuttings can root in water, providing a simple method for propagation. With a wide range of colorful foliage patterns and vibrant hues, coleus plants are perfect for adding bright and varied colors to gardens, borders, or indoor displays.
- Begonia: Begonia cuttings can be rooted in water, allowing for easy and successful propagation. Begonias come in numerous varieties, offering diverse foliage colors, patterns, and even flowers, making them a versatile choice for both indoor and outdoor gardens.
- Lavender (Lavandula): Lavender cuttings, especially those taken from semi-hardwood stems, can root in water, offering a fragrant addition to your indoor garden.
- Coleus (Plectranthus scutellarioides): Coleus, with its vibrant and colorful leaves, can grow roots in water, making it a popular choice for water propagation.
- Rose (Rosa): Certain varieties of roses can be propagated in water, allowing you to grow new roses from your favorite blooms.
- Bamboo (Bambusoideae): Bamboo cuttings can root in water, providing you with a simple method to grow these elegant plants indoors.
- African Violet (Saintpaulia): African violets can be propagated by placing their leaves in water, creating new plants that boast beautiful, delicate flowers.
- Jade Plant (Crassula ovata): Jade plants, also known as money plants, can be propagated in water, offering a low-maintenance option for indoor gardening.
- Fiddle Leaf Fig (Ficus lyrata): While a bit trickier, fiddle leaf fig cuttings can root in water, allowing you to expand your collection of these popular indoor trees.
- Succulents (Various Types): Certain succulent varieties, like Sedum and Graptopetalum, can be propagated in water, making them a unique addition to your water propagation experiments.
- Peperomia (Peperomia): Peperomia plants, with their thick, fleshy leaves, can be propagated in water, offering an easy way to grow these compact indoor plants.
- Monstera (Monstera deliciosa): Monstera cuttings can root in water, producing the iconic split leaves that make this plant a favorite among indoor gardeners.
- Dieffenbachia (Dieffenbachia): Also known as dumb cane, dieffenbachia cuttings can be placed in water to root, allowing you to grow these striking, variegated plants.
- Chinese Evergreen (Aglaonema): Chinese evergreen cuttings can root in water, providing you with lush, green plants that thrive in low-light conditions.
- Basil (Ocimum basilicum): Basil cuttings can root in water, offering a fresh supply of this aromatic herb for your culinary endeavors.
- Hawaiian Ti: Hawaiian Ti cuttings can be rooted in water, making this tropical plant accessible to indoor gardeners. With its vibrant, sword-shaped leaves in various colors, Hawaiian Ti adds a touch of exotic elegance to indoor spaces.
- Impatiens: Impatiens cuttings readily root in water, offering an easy way to grow these popular flowering plants. With their profusion of colorful blooms, impatiens are a favorite choice for brightening up gardens, hanging baskets, and window boxes, especially in shady areas.
- Wandering Dude: Wandering Dude cuttings can be placed in water, allowing them to develop roots swiftly. Known for their trailing vines and vibrant, variegated leaves, Wandering Dude plants add a cascading burst of color to both indoor and outdoor settings, making them a sought-after choice for hanging planters.
- Christmas Cactus: Christmas Cactus cuttings can root in water, making it a convenient way to propagate this beloved holiday plant. With its unique flattened stems and festive, colorful flowers, the Christmas Cactus brightens up homes during the holiday season, making it a cherished addition to indoor gardens.
- Prayer Plant: Prayer Plant cuttings can be rooted in water, offering an uncomplicated method for propagation. Characterized by their stunning patterned leaves that fold upward at night, prayer plants add a touch of elegance to indoor spaces, making them a favorite among houseplant enthusiasts.
- Creeping Fig: Creeping Fig cuttings can root in water, allowing this versatile plant to spread its green foliage easily. With its small, heart-shaped leaves and rapid growth, creeping fig is often used for ground cover, climbing walls, or trailing from hanging baskets, adding a lush, green appeal to various settings.
- Monstera: Monstera cuttings can be propagated in water, providing a simple method for growing these iconic, split-leaf plants. Monstera’s large, unique leaves make a bold statement in any indoor garden, and their adaptability to different light conditions makes them a popular choice for plant enthusiasts.
- ZZ Plants: ZZ Plant cuttings can root in water, making them an excellent choice for novice gardeners. With their glossy, dark green leaves and low-maintenance nature, ZZ plants thrive in low light and are highly resilient, making them a durable and attractive addition to indoor spaces.
- Baby’s Tear: Baby’s Tear cuttings can be rooted in water, allowing for easy propagation of this delicate, carpeting plant. Baby’s tear, with its tiny, lush green leaves, creates a soft, velvety ground cover and is perfect for terrariums, fairy gardens, or as an ornamental filler in plant displays.
- Sage: Sage cuttings can be rooted in water, offering a straightforward way to grow this aromatic herb. With its gray-green leaves and distinctive flavor, sage is a culinary favorite. It is also valued for its medicinal properties and ornamental appeal, making it a versatile choice for herb gardens and kitchen windowsills.
- Mint: Mint cuttings readily root in water, making it an accessible herb to grow indoors. With its refreshing scent and various flavors, mint is a popular choice for teas, culinary dishes, and garnishes. Its rapid growth and ability to thrive in water make it a favorite among herb enthusiasts.
- Rosemary: Rosemary cuttings can be rooted in water, offering a simple method for growing this fragrant herb. Known for its aromatic leaves and culinary uses, rosemary is a versatile herb that adds flavor to a wide range of dishes. Its slender leaves and woody stems make it an attractive and practical addition to herb gardens and kitchen windowsills.
Did I forget anything? Let me know in the comments below!
Thanks for reading!
Hey there, I’m Morgan, a houseplant enthusiast from sunny Charleston, South Carolina. Growing up surrounded by my mom’s lush orchids and African violets, I discovered the magic of bringing nature indoors. Thanks to the pandemic, I delved deeper into houseplants, discovering their power to uplift moods and transform spaces. I’m here to spill all my secrets, helping you pick the perfect houseplant – and make it happy. Let’s keep your plants alive, together! 😊