Rubber plant trees are durable and flexible houseplants, which leads many people to question, “How do you obtain a beginning of a rubber tree plant?” Propagating rubber tree plants is very easy and implies that you will have beginnings for all of your loved ones. But can you propagate a rubber plant in water?
Yes you can propagate rubber plant in water. While it is not the most effective way to propagate (soil is usually more effective). It definitely can be achieved when you follow specific methods as we have outlined below.
How to propagate rubber plant in water
Taking cutting from Rubber Plants is a very enjoyable and cost effective way of multiplying your plants. You can easily achieve this propagation in water. We also use this method of propagation with Monsteras. This is a very reliable method as we have attempted this method several times with success. We have discovered that this method has taken to rooting which is great and we are happy to share with you this method of propagating a rubber plant in water.
Thankfully if you follow this propagation procedure you will be able to enjoy the same benefits as we have. For this exercise you will need a cutting. This cutting you will need to eliminate and remove the leaves to allow the stem to sit in the water comfortably. The other thing you will need is a glass container which is full of water.
All you simply need to do is get your cutting and place it in the glass jar, I have a range of decanters I use which I have bought from KMart and they work perfectly for this. The key to the success of this is to make sure that the bottom of stem cutting is not in contact with the bottom of the container. The reason nehind this is that it will prevent the root growth as it is squashed up against the glass.
- The next step is to have patience. You will have to wait a substantial amount of time. Sometimes up to 3 months before you start seeing some of the roots appear at the bottom of the stem. Another tip is to place it in a warm location around the home. My goto spot is our bay window in our bedroom which gets plenty of day light and typically stays at a very warm temperature.
After some time you will then see some little white nodes pushing through the bottom of stem. This is the time to get excited. Now you need exercise more patience and allow the plant to do its thing in the jar for a few more months until you have some substantial root growth. This will then put it in a place to be planted into a pot.
What is the best time to propagate a rubber plant in water?
Like many indoor plant fans, pruning your plants is something you should do for both aesthetics and to assist in this case the rubber plant it also helps it become bushier and branch out further. The Rubber Plant is one which has a tendency to get become much larger at a very rapid rate. Pruning your plant is a great way of keeping a solid aesthetic shape that will work well in your home. Giving your Ficus enough sun is also very important in the health of the plant. If they do not get enough sun they can become limp, this is also a good indication that its time for a good pruning.
As for the timings, this is a bit of a no brainer. Propagation of most plants is inline with warmer months so its best to get this done anywhere between the start of spring to the end of summer. This will mean that the weather is warm and right balance to help the propagation process happen. This will definitely help with the success of getting your cutting to grow roots. Also note there is more sunlight during these months so this will definitely help with the propagation process.
One other thing to mention when propagating is to make sure that you are taking your cuttings from a healthy plant. This will help in the success of your propagation. If your plant has any type of infestation or is looking rather unhealthy I would recommend not doing any propagation. Concentrate on getting that plant to a place where its healthy. Adding any extra stress on this plant is not recommmended. Taking a cutting from a plant that is unhealthy will most likely lead to an unsucesfful attempt at propagation. With any plant is good to start from a good base.
Propagating Rubber Plant in Soil
Theres nothing fun about trimming your rubber plant. As the name suggests its a rubber plant and when you cut the stems they will typically secrete a gooey white substance which will leak all over the place. So be prepared for a slightly messy pruning exercise. This substance can also be annoying to remove but if you have the right materials to do so you can be in a place to clean it up in no time.
Items that will help in your propagation:
- Some pruning cutters or a super sharp knife.
- Zip bags.
- Paper towels for the clean up.
- A rooting hormone or honey
- A pot which is filled with your potting mix.
Be prepared with all the items before you get into the process. This will make it a smoother process and getting the cutting you want to have a successful propagation.
Choosing the stem you will cut for the exercise
As mentioned earlier choose a nice healthy looking stem which has enough room for a primary leaf along with enough stem that you will be able to place it in your container.
Now take the cutting of the stem
It’s best to cut your stem approximately halfway up. Look for an area in which there is space to cut on the parent plant. Clean the cutting with the paper towel and then place the end of the stem in the honey or hormones. I have mentioned this yet but you can also do this without the honey or hormones. This just gives it the edge for success.
Time to clean up your cutting
Now its time to trim the leaves from the lower half of the stem cutting. Either use a sharp knife or the pruner to remove these leave. Make sure you have at least half a foot (15 cms or six inches) which will be enough space to carry out the propagation. The sad news is the other leaves that you have cut are no real use to you so feel free to chuck those in the compost bin. Be sure to leave at least three to four leaves at the top of stem.
Potting the cutting in the soil
Place the end of the stem into your hormone and then place it into the pot which should be well moistened prior to. The rubber plant is special in that unlike at the top of the article, yes you can propagate in water, in this case it doesnt need to be rooted in water. They can just work their magic right in the dirt.
Time to create a mini green house.
So that zip lock bag in the list above that was going to be the mini greenhouse around the pot. Because the plant will be very fragile you will need to create a greenhouse like environment. This is simply by place the plastic bag over the top of the plant and sealing the bag around the pot. Dont seal it 100% of the way still leave some space for air circulation, leave around 10%.
Be sure that the leaves are not in contact with the bag as well. Make sure to keep the soil nice and moist and place it in a location where it does receive some sunlight but not direct sunlight.
That is the end of the propagating a rubber plant process.
Where to from here and caring for the new rubber plant
Patience is a virtue and so is waiting for new leaves to appear on your new rubber plant. To ensure success of your new plant make sure that you continue to maintain moist soil and that you keep it in a continuously warm location. As for the mini green house keep that going for a couple of months and then you can remove it. You might stat seeing something happening at this stage. Give it around half a year and you will start to see some real action and you will be over the moon with your new thriving rubber plant.