En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
3 ratings

Thursday - April 22, 2010

From: Kingsley, MI
Region: Midwest
Topic: Propagation
Title: Rooting house plants
Answered by: Anne Bossart

QUESTION:

Hello Mr SP: I've had Philodendron house plants (many) for years now, because they're easy to grow & that's about my style. Years ago I tried to grow a new plant from a cutting off of one, but it just sat in the glass. So about 7 weeks ago when I wanted to do this again I looked online as to instructions. I was surprised to see I'd done it correctly when I was unsuccessful, however that place said it could take a month or so to get roots..so I assumed I'd not waited long enough. I took 3 cuttings about a foot long 7 weeks ago & put them in a glass of water in my kitchen window-it's doing nothing, except maybe rotting. The ends in the water are turning a darker color, no roots even starting. This is frustrating to be because it's such a simple plant (what's that say about me?) & I can't afford to pay what a plant house charges for a new plant, & this is supposed to be easy! Please help!!

ANSWER:

Sorry, this question is outside our area of expertise.  The mission of the  Lady Bird Johnson Wildower Center is to increase the sustainable use and conservation of native wildflowers, plants and landscapes and Philodendron, being a tropical plant, does not fall within that.

However, Mr. Smarty Plants has rooted a few houseplants in his day, and we suspect you are having a problem because you have the glass in too much light.  A quick check of Wikipedia and we found this: 

"New plants can be grown by taking stem cuttings with at least two joints. Cuttings then can be rooted in pots of sand and peat moss mixtures. These pots are placed in greenhouses with bottom heat of 21-24 °C. During the rooting cuttings should be kept out of direct sunlight. Once rooted the plants can be transplanted to larger pots or directly outside in milder climates. A second way to propagate philodendrons is to take stems cuttings, particularly from trailing varieties, and place them in water. In four to five weeks the plant should develop roots and can be transferred to pots."

Try again and good luck!

 

More Propagation Questions

Transplanting False Gaura in Austin
October 27, 2010 - I am transplanting my false gaura. Do they transplant well, and should I cut them back?
view the full question and answer

Propagation of Lime Prickly Ash in Austin
March 22, 2010 - We found only one small what we think is Zanthoxylum fagara or Lime Prickly Ash, Colima on our 8 acres, and the deer had apparently recently broken the main stem. I quickly made 6 or 7 cuttings, dippe...
view the full question and answer

Storing seed from Pickerel weed
October 28, 2005 - What's the best method to store seed from Pickerel weed (Pontederia cordata) and Arrowhead (Sagattaria latifolia)? Should it be kept wet?
view the full question and answer

Pollination by dwarf yaupons of normal size selections in Gadsden AL
May 31, 2009 - Can dwarf varieties of male yaupons be used to pollinate non dwarf female yaupons? Specific males in question are Shillings (Stokes Dwarf) yaupon and Bordeaux Condeaux.
view the full question and answer

Germination and propagation of bluebonnets
April 25, 2005 - I live in Austin. Last fall I spread a load of dirt on my lawn to provide soil contact for the 2 pounds of bluebonnet seeds I subsequently spread (this was in early November). The germination rate a...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center