Native to moist, shaded forests or valleys of Asia, Australia and the Pacific islands, the ti plant thrives in low light and high humidity. This upright shrub produces leaf clusters in colors ranging from green to variegated reds, pinks, orange and maroon. With four hours of bright indirect light a day, foliage develops rich hues adding a tropical atmosphere to the home. Prized for its brilliant foliage and low maintenance, ti is often grown as a houseplant and is thought by some to bring good luck. Propagate ti plants with stem cuttings to produce plants identical to the parent plant.
Select healthy young shoots for stem cuttings, as they root rapidly and require no rooting hormones at this stage.
Cut stems into 1-inch sections and plant horizontally in potting medium. Cover ¼ of the stem, leaving ¾ visible above the top of the soil. A mixture of one part potting soil, one part perlite and one part peat moss makes a lightweight potting mixture suitable for rooting cuttings.
Water to moisten potting medium and place in a shaded location with temperature between 65 and 85 degrees F. Avoid drafty areas.
Mist several times a day to prevent drying and speed germination. Keep soil moist, but avoid soggy soil as this invites rot and introduces disease.
Transplant to a 4- to 6-inch pot once roots become established and new growth appears from the stem. Several plants may sprout along the stem. Clip the stem to separate plants (once roots are established) and pot in individual pots.
Move the pot to an area that receives bright indirect light for at least 4 hours a day. Filtered light from a sunny window provides the light ti needs to thrive and develop richly colored foliage.
Place ti plants on a pebble tray filled with water to increase humidity. Keep water level below the bottom of the plant pot.
Fertilize ti plants monthly with an application of 20-10-20 fertilizer following the recommended application rate on the package.