The lacy tree philodendron, or Thaumatophyllum bipinnatifidum, is a tropical houseplant native to South America. It is characterized by large, deeply-lobed leaves that give it an almost prehistoric look. In ideal conditions, these leaves can grow up to five feet long!
It can cost a lot to buy a new lacy tree philodendron from a store, so knowing how to properly propagate it at home can be a valuable skill.
In this article, we will discuss exactly how to propagate a lacy tree philodendron, so if you are ready to grow your collection, just keep reading!
Lacy tree philodendron propagation
Propagation of the lacy tree philodendron is quite straightforward, using stem cuttings taken from the parent plant. Fortunately, this plant takes well to propagation, so even beginners will be able to do it without any problem.
Make sure that your parent plant is healthy and that it has several stems that are mature enough for cutting.
There are two ways to proceed with propagation: you can either propagate in soil or in water.
Take a new pot and fill it halfway with a mixture of peat moss and sand; it should be at least two inches deep. Ensure that the organic matter is distributed evenly over the bottom of the pot.
Pour water over this mix until it flows out of the bottom of the pot, and make sure that the drainage holes are functioning properly.
Examine the stems of your lacy tree philodendron individually to see which stems have at least two nodes. Select one of these and remove it from the parent plant using sterile pruning shears. It is important that the cutting has at least two nodes, as these are where the new roots will sprout from.
Place the cut stem into the new pot by pushing it down into the soil. The nodes should be completely below the surface once you are done. Once you have successfully planted the cutting, water the soil in the pot generously.
In order to provide your cutting with a warm, moist environment in which to grow, cover it in a clear plastic bag. Do this after saturating the soil, so that the plastic locks in moisture and prevents it from drying out. Then, place your new plant where it will receive bright but indirect sunlight to ensure that it thrives.
Lightly dig around the base of the stem once or twice a week to check for new root growth. It can take anywhere from three weeks to a month for the roots to fully develop. Once they have developed nicely, you can transplant the cutting to a new container filled with more potting mix.
To achieve the best results, try to do your propagate during the spring and summer months because this is the plant’s active growing season. The pleasant weather is more conducive for plant growth and increases the chances of successful propagation.
For this method, make a clean cut below a node on your chosen stem. Each cutting should have two to three leaves and a couple of nodes at the time of pruning.
Place the fresh cutting in a container of tepid water, with the nodes below the surface, and place the container in an area that receives bright, indirect light. Check the cutting regularly, and make sure that none of the leaves are touching the water, as this could cause them to rot and ruin your propagation attempt.
Every week, change the water to keep it fresh. Murky or smelly water means that bacteria have begun to reproduce there, which may be harmful to your cutting.
After a couple of weeks, you should see the formation of small roots sprouting from the nodes. When the roots are one to two inches long, it is time to transfer the cutting to a pot with soil.
You can then start caring for the plant the same way you would a regular lacy tree philodendron.
The lacy tree philodendron is a tropical houseplant with large, lobed, prehistoric-looking leaves. These leaves can grow up to five feet long in ideal conditions.
This plant is native to the tropical regions of South America, but can easily be grown indoors in North America. Furthermore, it can be propagated really easily using stem cuttings.
When choosing a stem to cut off, make sure to include at least two nodes. You can then choose to plant the cutting directly into the soil, or you can let it root in a glass of water first before planting it in the soil.
Image: istockphoto.com / Damocean