Did you know that you can grow an entire garden starting with just one plant? It’s true. By buying and caring for just one small plant, over time and with the proper care, you can end up with many, many more… all at no additional cost. It’s done with techniques known as propogation, and dividing.
Many common indoor and outdoor plants can be multiplied easily using basic dividing and propagation techniques. And once you know how it’s done, you’ll wonder why you haven’t been doing this before now.
Dividing a plant simply means to break it up into smaller pieces. This is often done when a plant becomes too large for a container it’s growing in, or too large for the garden space it’s planted in. You can divide a plant almost anytime though, as long as it is healthy and not too small.
To divide a plant, you’ll need to dig it up out of your garden first, Clean the roots off a bit with water so you can see them well – you can clean the soil off the roots by simply rinsing them gently with a watering can.
Once the roots are clean, it’s usually fairly easy to tell where you should divide the plant at because often it looks like you have two or more plants all growing together to begin with. If this is the case, then simply pull the plants and their roots apart into multiple pieces.
If the plant doesn’t have an obvious place to divide it though, don’t worry, it’s still easy to do. Just use a very sharp knife, and cut the plant into pieces from the base through the roots. Be sure you’re leaving plenty of roots for each section you’re cutting off, so the plant can continue growing healthy and strong.
Once you have the plant pulled or cut into multiple smaller plants, then you just need to replant them in separate spaces. You can still have them all in the same garden bed if you’d like, just space them apart as if you’d bought multiple plants at the store, and care for them as you normally would.
Another way to get multiple plants off of one is to simply take cuttings. My mom used to do this with her houseplants actually, when a stem got broken off. She’d simply place the broken stem into a glass of water and sit it in the kitchen window. Within a few weeks new roots could be seen, and she’d plant it into a new pot of it’s own.
You can often do the same thing with outdoor plants too, and you don’t always have to wait for a stem or branch to break. Go outside and cut a branch off one of your plants. Try to cut it several inches from the tip and just below a leaf. Then pinch off at least the bottom three leaves on the branch, and place that into a glass of water. Sit it in a window which doesn’t get too hot, and refill the water in the glass every few days.
You can also just place the cutting into moist vermiculite, and you may find the new roots developing faster.
Use either of these techniques regularly and you’ll soon find yourself overflowing with many beautiful plants.