Start a new plant from an old one?

PlantsAndYarn(5)October 22, 2012

Hi folks!

I have a Hoya plant that belonged to my grandmother. Not sure which kind it is, but it looks exactly like the picture in the upper right of the forum page. Bella?

Although I have lots of houseplants, this is my only Hoya. It is in the same pot that we brought from her house. It is doing good, blooms in the winter & smells up the whole living room.

It has "vines" growing out of it, some are 2 ft. long. There are no leaves on these "vines" but there are groupings of little bumps/nodules on the vines.

Can I cut these & start a new plant from them? I have read about messing with the root ball to start new plants, but don't want to do that. I am afraid I would kill it & it is important to me to keep this plant. Grandma had lots of plants but this was the only one she had left when she passed away.

Thanks for your help.

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Hi there. :)

The plant on the front page is a Hoya carnosa. Bella does also have white flowers, but there are a number of differences.

It's very easy to start a new Hoya from a cutting. That's the main way these plants are propagated. In some cases people might separate a pot of Hoya that is actually a group of plants all started in the same basket, but you can't really divide a true single Hoya.

Your cutting can be as small as one node (the bump where the leaves come out) or as big as you like. 2-4 nodes is a good length to work with. Choose a vine with at least a couple mature leaves on it. The vines with no leaves usually are the ones where the peduncles appear (where the flowers bloom), but your new plant will need the leaves more starting out.

Just pot it up in some nice airy soil (e.g. potting soil mixed with bark and perlite) with one or more of the nodes touching (or submerged in) the medium. The nodes are where the roots emerge, so the more nodes the better, but one is fine with a hearty Hoya like carnosa.

I bet once you see how pretty they look when they're small, you'll be putting baby carnosas all over the place, just like I did. :P

    Bookmark   October 22, 2012 at 12:53PM
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Oh plants and yarn! My favorite combo! Welcome! I would not cut and root the leafless vines, as peduncles are likely to form. Let those fill out, the old saying if it is not broke don't fix it applies. I have separated hoya's at the root ball as long as you can make a separation with a good root ball left on the two sections that are separated. For sure losing a plant that has memorable emotions would be hard to take. Try taking a cutting with leaves on it and use that first, a small section that won't be missed. Post a picture if you are able. ~ Mary

    Bookmark   October 22, 2012 at 12:53PM
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Thank you for your replies.

I will have to get some new potting soil (after payday) before I can do this. Would it be okay to start it in some water first, then put in dirt? Or just wait till I get the dirt? I have started many plants from cuttings so I am sure I can do this. Just needed to know the correct way with this plant. I wouldn't mind having several of these. The flowers are amazing. They smell so good. Much much better than a flowering Bromeliad!! lol There are some woody vines that appear to have no leaves on them. It's okay to remove these isn't it? I just don't want to do something that may harm it. It really is special to me.

I will see if I can get a picture up. Maybe I will wait till it gets flowers again. My screen name comes from the gardening I do, ton of houseplants & mountain of yarn I have for crocheting, lol.

Once again, thanks for the replies. I will keep you posted on how this goes.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2012 at 7:00AM
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Check out the water grown thread just starting.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2012 at 9:14AM
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You can root Hoyas in water, but in my opinion you might as well wait, as the roots that grow are adapted for water and aren't well suited for soil. So, when you transfer it to soil, the cutting has to turn around and begin a new set. I find the benefit of this practice somewhat questionable.

As far as the bare vines go, do not cut those off. Hoya carnosa likes to grow peduncles on long bare vines like that. If you leave it, you'll soon have more flowers.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2012 at 10:50AM
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Thank you.

Think I'll just wait till I can get some fresh dirt before trying this. That will save me a step. Maybe I will experiment & try water rooting later.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2012 at 12:45PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Hi P&Y,

There's really no 'correct' rooting in water (that I know of & I do a lot of this). I just put the cutting in the smallest possible cup w/ water & watch it; topping off the water every couple of days as needed. I won't wish you luck 'cause you won't even need it ;>)

    Bookmark   October 23, 2012 at 1:57PM
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txmom(North Texas)

Have started people on the Hoya trek dozens of times by rooting cuttings in water. Unfortunately, I no longer have any plants but many of my "babies" are now HUGE flowering plants.
Starting again with an Indian root hoya cutting from a friend - rooting in water and crossing my fingers.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2012 at 9:47PM
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