How to Clone a House Plant


Cloning, or propagation, of houseplants is a way of taking a small amount of plant tissue from a mature plant and growing that tissue into a full plant. Air layering is a method that allows you to grow a new plant while the donor tissue is still attached to the parent plant. Propagating in this manner is suitable for most plant varieties. The cloned plant will have the same qualities as the parent plant, so it is important that a disease-free houseplant is chosen.

Step 1

Cut the stem at a point just below a leaf. Make a cut that is 1-inch long and goes halfway through the stem, leaving an exposed portion of the inner stem. Insert a toothpick lengthwise into the wound, like a splint, to keep it open. Break the toothpick if necessary so that it fits into the wound.

Step 2

Apply rooting hormone to the wound on the plant. Rooting hormone is available at most garden centers, going by several brand names such as Olivia's Solutions, Rootone, Hormex and Dip N Grow, and is available in both liquid and powder forms.

Step 3

Apply moist sphagnum moss over the wounded area, making a ball as large as your fist. Wrap the ball in clear plastic wrap to keep it moist and secure the ends with electrical tape.

Step 4

Allow the plant one month to develop roots at the area of the wound. Cut the stem just below the roots and plant the rooted stem in new potting soil.

Things You'll Need

  • Knife
  • Rooting hormone
  • Toothpick
  • Sphagnum moss
  • Plastic wrap
  • Water
  • Electrical tape


  • University of Missouri Extension: Home Propagation of Houseplants
  • University of Illinois: Vegetative Propagation of Houseplants
  • Michigan State University Extension: House Plant Propagation
Keywords: clone house plannts, house plant propagation, propagating plants

About this Author

Cleveland Van Cecil is a freelancer writer specializing in technology. He has been a freelance writer for three years and has published extensively on, writing articles on subjects as diverse as boat motors and hydroponic gardening. Van Cecil has a Bachelor of Arts in liberal arts from Baldwin-Wallace College.