Do you know how to propagate jade plant from cuttings? Growing a jade plant from cuttings is just as easy as caring for a mature one.
Jade plants are evergreen flowering succulent plants with round, fleshy and, smooth leaves. These plants are slow-growing and flower occasionally under the right conditions.
There are just a few things you need to put in place when propagating this plant from cuttings.
First and foremost, the conditions must be right for your cuttings to succeed. Then, make sure you have the necessary equipment for taking the cuttings.
Finally, be careful throughout the process such that you keep the parent jade, young jades and, cuttings safe and healthy.
Also, take the cuttings carefully such that you do not harm the general appearance of the parent plant.
With this in mind, let’s now take a look at how to propagate a jade plant from cuttings to seedlings.
Items you’ll Need
- Sharp knife/scissors
- A pot with drainage holes
- A well-draining potting mix e.g. perlite and sand soil mixture
- Vases/ a glass
3 Steps on How to Propagate Jade Plant from Stem Cuttings to Seedlings
1. Take the cuttings
This is usually the first step when propagating jade plants from cuttings.
Begin by selecting a healthy branch from a mature jade plant. The branch you choose must be at least 8-10 cm long and free from pests and diseases.
If the branches aren’t that long, you might just have to propagate from leaves or, wait until they are long enough (might take some time as the plant is slow-growing)
Assuming that you have your desired stems, it’s now time to take the cuttings.
Start by cutting a portion of the selected stem using a sharp knife or a pair of scissors.
Your knife/scissors must be sterilized to avoid infections on the stem. Make a clean cut with at least one node (a section of the stem with bumps where leaves and roots can grow from) with an internode just above it.
Next, carefully pluck the leaves close to the cut end of the stem as they can take away the energy from the rooting process.
Make sure to leave a few young leaves towards the uncut part of your stem (This helps you determine the correct way to place the cuttings in soil/water)
2. Dry the cuttings
Another important step when propagating jades from cuttings. So, place the cuttings in a preferably warm and dry spot and allow them to dry until they form a callous.
This takes approximately 1 to 2 weeks and helps prevent rots on the wound thus, protecting the cuttings from getting infected by diseases.
You can also dust the open wound with rooting hormone containing an anti-fungal compound to further protect the cuttings from infections.
Apart from this, the rooting hormone also helps hasten the appearance of root cells that forms strong and healthy roots.
3. Root the cuttings
As soon as the cuttings are dry and you can spot the emergence of small white roots from the calloused cut end, you can now plant the cuttings.
There are two methods to choose from i.e. in water or, in soil.
Let’s take a look at both methods each at a time.
How to propagate jade plant cuttings in water?
This is the easiest and quickest way of rooting jade plant cuttings hence the favorite to a majority of gardeners.
In this method, you just need to place the healed cuttings in a glass/ vase of water and keep them in a spot with bright, indirect sunlight. Make sure to change the water once or twice every week.
Repot the plants once the roots grow to about 2 inches (5 cm) long.
One advantage of rooting jade cuttings in water is that you can easily monitor how the roots develop in real-time.
How to root jade cuttings in soil/potting mix?
Apart from using water, you can also root jade cuttings directly in the soil. Here’s is how you do it in 4 steps.
- Acquire a pot/container with drainage holes and fill it with well-draining potting mix e.g. perlite and sand soil mixture.
- Add some water to your growing medium to keep it moist to touch but not soggy.
- Using a stick or, your finger, poke a hole deep enough into the medium such that the stem cutting can remain upright.
- Move the container with the stem cutting to a site with bright, indirect light and water it every few days or whenever the potting mix feels dry.
The only downfall though not necessarily one that makes you change your view on soil method is that you can’t keep an eye on the progress of the cutting. At least not until new leaves start to emerge.
5 Steps on How to grow a jade plant from a leaf to a seedling
Jade plants are succulents and as such, it’s possible to grow a new jade plant from a single leaf (whether a fallen one or freshly picked)
However, there are higher chances for failure when propagating from a leaf as compared to stem propagation.
Nevertheless, this shouldn’t be the reason why you can’t propagate your jade especially if your parent plant is quite small for making stem cuttings.
So, let’s take a look at how this is done step by step.
Step 1: Identify a healthy leaf on the parent plant. Preferably younger and medium-sized leaves as they easily adjust after being plucked from the stem as compared to older ones.
Step 2: Gently snip the leaf off the stem using a pair of scissors or a sharp knife to avoid damage to both the leaf and the parent plant.
Step 3: Just like the stem cuttings, your leaf needs some time for the wound to heal and dry to form a callous from where the roots emerge. Therefore, keep the cut place in a dry place and avoid moisture as much as you can. Drying the leaf helps prevent rots and other infections.
Step 4: In a few weeks, the tiny white roots will start protruding from the dry wound. During this time, the leaf starts to shrink and wither. This shouldn’t alarm you! It simply shows that there is a lot of moisture being absorbed by the developing roots.
Step 5: At this point, you can choose between propagating in water or soil/potting mix. If you go for the soil method, you need to place the leaf into the potting mix and water the growing medium lightly until it’s moist but not soggy. After this, you only water occasionally when the growing medium is dry as root rot is always a threat to young roots.
In about 2 to 8 weeks, the rooted leaf starts to produce tiny plants/plantlets on the edge that touches the medium.
Upon reaching approximately 3 inches tall, you can treat it as a normal jade plant where you water it occasionally/use a regular schedule for watering succulents when you notice wrinkles/folds on the leaves (indicates lack of moisture in the soil).
The other option is to propagate your cut leaf in water.
This one is a bit tricky as the leaf has to remain upright which might be difficult to maintain. All in all, there is always something around us to make it work.
For instance, use some toothpicks to suspend the leaf on water in a glass or vase.
Like in stem cutting, make sure to change the water once or twice every week.
Care for your Jade Plant
Assuming that the propagation process was a success and you have repotted your jade plant (as per your preference), it’s now time for you to learn a few jade care and maintenance tips.
This helps keep your plant alive, healthy and, thriving.
For that reason, let’s look at jade plant care in summary.
When it comes to soil, jade plants aren’t that selective and a general succulent potting mix works well.
The most important thing is for it to be well-drained to avoid rots and diseases.
Avoid potting soil with high levels of organic matter as it tends to hold lots of moisture. But if you must use it, it’s best to amend it first for instance with sand and perlite but not rocks to improve drainage.
Jades are drought-resistant plants native to arid areas of South Africa where they are used a lot of sun on daily basis.
And as such, provide yours with at least 3 to 6 hours of bright light each day.
Make sure to acclimatize young plants slowly in bright, indirect sunlight before exposing them to the direct sun. The large and well-established plants can withstand more direct sun.
The important thing here is to understand how to water your plants correctly.
These plants are succulents and overwatering will end up harming your plants due to root rot and disease infections.
It’s much safer to underwater them as they always show signs that they need water like shriveled leaves.
When this happens, water the plants thoroughly to saturate the medium until water drains from the drainage holes at the base of the pot.
This way, you have a disease-free and more resilient jade plant with strong roots.
Pro Tip: Never leave your plant to sit in water. Make sure to empty the drainage saucer after watering your plants.
It’s always good to give your jade plant some nutrient boost during the growing season.
Apply small amounts of a balanced fertilizer like N: P: K 10.10.10 at first as you follow the instructions on the leaflet.
Don’t fertilize during winter because the plant isn’t actively growing and can’t use the extra nutrients hence, a waste of time and resources.
Pests Infestation in Jade Plants
These are all very tiny pests that can go unnoticed for quite some time before they reach plant surfaces.
It is hence paramount to clean infected jade plants by rubbing alcohol several times before you can get rid of these pests.
Diseases that Affect Jade Plants
Powdery Mildew and bacterial soft rot are the most common diseases in a jade plant.
With powdery mildew, the leaves have scabby areas. It’s caused by the pathogen Sphaerotheca and can be controlled by applying a fungicide to protect healthy plants.
On the other hand, bacterial soft rot makes the interior tissues of the stems and branches soft and mushy leading to their collapse.
This disease is caused by the pathogen Erwinia and can only be managed by discarding the affected plants.
As you have seen, it’s easy to propagate jade plant from cuttings to seedlings. With a little bit of care, attention, and patience, it’s possible to grow a jade plant from a small part like a leaf to a large part like a branch.
Just follow what you have read to the letter and see how simple it can be.
You might even produce extra plants to offer your neighbors, friends, and family!
Best of luck!