Baby plant growing out of a leaf! How to root it?

Central_Valley(9)April 4, 2012

I'm seeking advice on a very strange rooting situation.

Some time ago my wife cut off an African violet leaf whose stem had been damaged and placed it in water. It duly took root.

Then the leaf cracked across its width and a tiny African violet sprouted from the edge of the crack. It has two pairs of leaves, in all about 1/8" across.

Now the original leaf is dying, but the "baby" is still green. I don't know whether it's drawing water from the dying "parent" or from the air, but I don't think it's likely to continue doing well.

Is there any way we can keep this little plant alive? As far as I can see it has no roots of its own, so I don't think that sticking it in water or soil is likely to work.

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My suggestion would be to keep the plantlet attached to the leaf, dust the ends with rooting powder, then place it gently in a mix of 1/2 perlite or vermiculite and half african violet mix. That way it can get started putting down it's own roots and still have nourishment from the leaf.

Maybe others with more experience will give you other options.

Do you have any pictures?

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 4:28PM
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irina_co(z5 CO)

In my experience you need to remove all dead tissue - otherwise the rot will kill the baby.

After you trimmed the leaf to the healthy tissue - you can put it in a humid sphagnum moss - orchid growers use it a lot- leaf on the moss - and just a bit of moss around the baby. Sphagnum moss has antifungal/antibacterial properties. And then you put the whole contraption in the covered transparent container - like the salad tray - and put it somewhere in indirect light - and keep an eye on it so it will not dry - spray it with water every so often.

This practically guaranteed way to get baby send the roots.

What BansheeBanshee suggested will work too - the chance of success will be someway lower, but even without rooting powder - but provided it is in airtight container with high humidity - and the rotten tissue is removed - I think it will work.


    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 8:01PM
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when i grewthem in high school lots of them did this plant the mama leaf as close to the leaf as possiblethat way the leaf can root and nourish the baby

    Bookmark   April 25, 2012 at 12:14PM
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