Inside: There’s nothing more exciting than propagating a plant in water. Using the proper transplanting techniques will give your new plant a bright future, and will ensure it’s healthy for many years to come. Learn how to transfer a plant from water to soil without damaging the root system and potentially killing it.
One of the greatest joys about being a plant owner is the ability to add to our collection without having to buy more plants. Although buying plants is a lot of fun, after a while it tends to put a strain on our wallets.
The best way to add more plants to your collection is by propagating new plants from your existing ones.
There are many different ways to propagate, such as placing your cutting directly into the soil, placing it in a propagation box, or putting your cutting in water.
The downside to propagating your plants in soil or Sphagnum moss – through a propagation box is you’re not able to see the roots growing. To most plant parents, that’s as joyous as finding your baby’s first tooth poking out from their gum-line.
Seeing how most plant parents use the water propagation method, you must transfer your plant from water to soil in a way that will allow it to flourish and grow healthy.
How to determine it’s time to transfer your water propagation plant directly into the soil
Once the root system is longer than the cutting, you can place it directly into a 3-inch pot with soil; however, going from one extreme to the next may stress your plant out and has a stronger chance of perishing than it would if you slowly added soil to the water.
Think about it how it feels if you’re hot and you fell into frozen water. That’s exactly how your new plant feels.
Not every cutting will flourish once it’s been transferred, so it’s always a good idea to take many cuttings. Hey, the worst thing that happens is you have a lot more plants.
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Supplies needed to transfer a plant from water to soil
- Fast draining potting soil
- Sphagnum moss
- 3-inch plastic pot with drainage holes
- Fertilizer of your choice – preferably worm castings
This is how you transfer a plant from water to soil
Pour a small amount of water from the top of the container holding your cutting. Depending on the size of the vessel your cutting is in will determine how much water you remove. It’s typically best to remove 1-to-2 tablespoons of water, but if your vessel holds that amount of water, remove just a small drop.
The key is to replace the same amount of water you’re pouring out with soil.
One. Add an equal amount of potting soil. You can add either damp soil or dry soil.
- Damp soil will sink
- Dry soil will just float around for a while until it absorbs the water.
Before adding the soil to your vessel, you’ll want to make sure the potting soil doesn’t contain any fertilizer (organic or not). By adding fertilizer at this point, you stand the chance of burning the new root system. Every day, you’ll want to add a little more potting soil to the vessel. Eventually, all the water will be absorbed into the soil.
Two. Once there’s no more water in the vessel, wait a few days before repotting your new plant.
Three. Before transferring, you’ll want to gently tug on the stem to make sure the plants are rooted in the soil.
Four. Wrap the roots and soil of your new plant in moist Sphagnum moss. Add fertilizer or worm castings to the soil before placing your new plant into the pot. The Sphagnum moss will keep the roots of your cutting moist. Remember – it spent its entire life encased in water.
Peachy Tip: You’ll want to use a plastic pot instead of a terra-cotta pot. The reason for this is, that your plant was born in water and it’s used to being moist. By putting your new plant in a terra-cotta pot, you’re going to have to water it more often than you would need to if it was in a plastic pot.
Once your new plant has been secured in its new pot, you’ll want to put the plant in a warm area with indirect light until it shows signs it’s doing good and/or it’s starting to produce new shoots.
Putting your new plant in an existing plant
There are times when some plants tend to grow sparse and what better way to fill it out than to add your new baby plant to the mix.
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Once your new plant has been rooted successfully by using the above 4 steps, you can place it in the existing pot.
You’ve now successfully transferred your plant from water to soil. Pat yourself on the back and watch how happy your new plant is.
Have you transferred a plant from water to soil before?
Have you been successful in the past when you transferred a plant from water to the soil? Share with a comment.