aerial roots - cuttings

dellis326 (Danny)February 28, 2009

I have a small monsteria type of plant, maybe 18 inches or so with 6 leaves. The aerial roots (7 or 8) are about 6-1/2 -7 feet long.

Can I start new plants from the roots?

I stuck the ends of some of them in a bottle of water and they started to grow new regular looking roots.

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Sounds like the root system is very healthy. You'll need to cut a section of the stem including a few nodes in order to start a new plant. A lot of folks use the term "stem" for the petiole which is the stalk that supports the leaf blade but the true stem is the base of the plant and is often called the "cane" by growers. Both the roots and the petioles grow from the nodes along the stem. If you can find a good place to cut the stem with two or three nodes intact you can place it sideways on soil or even in damp shagnum moss to begin a new plant. If it is necessary to remove the entire top of the plant you can do that but will probably loose a few leaves but it can also be easily rooted again.

    Bookmark   March 1, 2009 at 10:34PM
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dellis326 (Danny)

Thank you for your reply!
OK let's see if this picture will work

Sorry about the size of the image.

This is the plant I'm talking about. See the thin section? It is less than 20% of the thickness of the upper section. I was thinking of cutting it there and cutting the aerial roots and burying them up to the point that the thin section of the petiole (thanks for the correction) is laying on the soil with the aerial roots in the soil.

This type of cutting I understand how to do but I was wondering if I can also start new plants from the pieces of roots that will have to be cut off.

Thanks again

    Bookmark   March 1, 2009 at 11:13PM
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Dan, I can only see three or four nodes. You could cut the stem just below the uppermost node with the long root still attached and put that entire section into a new pot and the top cutting should re root without problem. Then leave the bottom nodes rooted in the existing pot and you'll grow another plant. Be sure and use a very loose potting media, best if it contains Perlite, bark, small pieces of sphagnum moss and some potting charcoal.

You won't be able to grow a new plant from the roots alone, you'll need to have at least one node, preferably two.

This may be Monstera deliciosa but there are a few Asia species that are not Monstera but are members of the same tribe (not the same genus). If you can post a good photo of both the upper and lower leaf surfaces we'd have a better shot at a species I.D. Assuming it is Monstera deliciosa the species is commonly found in Mexico and Central America growing along stream banks. I have a few specimens in my atrium that have climbed one of our trees are are up to about 8 feet now. The species will grow without a support but loves to have something to climb. By the way, juvenile plants aren't always easily identified as to species.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2009 at 10:34PM
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dellis326 (Danny)

Thanks for the info! Too bad about those roots not being able to start new plants, they grew alot of new root branches (?) after I put them in water

I haven't had time to take better photos yet.

is your site? That's a great site. I've lost many eveningg reading there. I already have a bucket of the soil mix recomended there for this plant.

Thanks again

    Bookmark   March 3, 2009 at 9:03PM
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Yes Dan, I began the the ExoticRainforest in 2005 and there are now well over 350 pages of information on the site, mostly regarding aroids. Although I'm not an expert and have never claimed to be one I've been very lucky to have a lot of aroid botanists and experts offer help. I now have at least a dozen folks that explain technical data and edit what I write but I am always delighted to learn if something else on the site is incorrect. Just today I had a scientist point out a few of my conversions from Celsius temperature to Fahrenheit were off a degree or two. If you read anything that sounds wrong please point it out and I'll verify the science with a real scientist. I hope you've found the site useful and send me a private note anytime I can help. Use a very loose soil and your plant will do fine, but just can't grow a plant from a root unless there is at least one node attached.


    Bookmark   March 4, 2009 at 5:24PM
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