Office Plant Propagation: Tips For Propagating Common Office Plants

Gardener Planting Plants In Pots
office plant propagation
(Image credit: kn1)

Propagating plants in the office is no different than propagating houseplants, and simply involves enabling the newly propagated plant to develop roots so it can live on its own. Most office plant propagation is surprisingly easy. Read on and we’ll tell you the basics of how to propagate plants for the office.

How to Propagate Office Plants

There are several different methods of propagating plants in the office, and the best technique depends on the growth characteristics of the plant. Here are a few tips on propagating common office plants:


Division is the simplest propagation technique, and works beautifully for plants that produce offsets. In general, the plant is removed from the pot and a small section, which must have several healthy roots, is gently separated from the main plant. The main plant is returned to the pot and the division is planted in its own container. Plants suitable for propagation via division include:

Compound Layering

Compound layering allows you to propagate a new plant from a long vine or stem attached to the original (parent) plant. Although it tends to be slower than other techniques, layering is an extremely easy means of office plant propagation. Just select a long stem. Leave it attached to the parent plant and secure the stem to potting mix in a small pot, using a hairpin or bent paper clip. Snip the stem when the stem roots. Layering by this means is suitable for plants such as:

Air layering is a somewhat more complex procedure that involves stripping the outer layer from a section of stem, then covering the stripped stem in damp sphagnum moss until roots develop. At that point, the stem is removed and planted in a separate pot. Air layering works well for:

Stem Cuttings

Office plant propagation via stem cutting involves taking a 4 to 6 inch (10-15 cm.) stem from a healthy plant. The stem is planted in a pot filled with moist potting soil. Rooting hormone often speeds rooting. Many plants benefit from a plastic covering to keep the environment around the cutting warm and moist until rooting takes place. In some cases, stem cuttings are rooted in water first. However, most plants root best when planted directly in potting mix. Stem cuttings work for a large number of plants including:

Leaf Cuttings

Propagation via leaf cuttings involves planting leaves in moist potting mix, although the specific means of taking leaf cuttings depends on the particular plant. For example, the large leaves of snake plant (Sansevieria) can be cut into pieces for propagation, while African violet is easy to propagate by planting a leaf into the soil. Other plants suitable for leaf cuttings include:

Mary H. Dyer

A Credentialed Garden Writer, Mary H. Dyer was with Gardening Know How in the very beginning, publishing articles as early as 2007.