Can You Propagate Elephant Bush In Water

After caring for Portulacaria Afra plants for a long time, I’ve discovered that they’re among the simplest to grow and spread. Recently, my spouse has developed a keen interest in these plants and has diligently studied them in great detail. He has discovered the most effective method for growing Portulacaria afras, and he has outlined his extremely thorough findings below.

Using stem cuttings with hefty leaves in the spring and summer is the best time to grow a Portulacaria Afra. For a few days, stems should be placed outside to callus or dry. Plant cuttings in a soil mixture that has enough moisture or is moist enough. Within 1-3 weeks, your stem cuttings will begin to root.

Your Portulacaria Afra should be simple to spread under the correct circumstances. Continue reading for more information on how to properly maintain the environment so that you can reproduce your elephant bush.

Can you grow an elephant bush with water?

to spread Portulacaria “Elephant Bush” I favor using stem cuttings. Below, we’ll cover leaf propagation.

Getting a few stem cuttings is the first stage. I favor taking stem cuttings from plants with lush leaves. It implies that the leaves have a sufficient water supply and can quickly produce new leaves if necessary. My observations suggest that as long as your stem cuttings contain at least 4 leaves, it doesn’t appear to matter how long or short they are.

The stem would have to be cut directly beneath a node. A node is a point where two stem segments come together. A node should not be cut through. I’ve tried this before, and it seems to limit the development of new roots for the stem.

It’s preferable if you can bury the stem an inch or two below the soil’s surface. The purpose of the roots is to seek moisture, and the soil closer to the bottom of the pot maintains moisture longer. Because the soil dries up rather rapidly on the surface, you want your stems to be at least an inch below the surface.

Keep your Elephant Bush stem cuttings aside for 2–7 days so they can callus or dry out. By doing this, you can prevent the stem cuttings from rotting before they have an opportunity to take root.

The second stage is to create a soil mixture that will aid in the germination of Elephant Bush stem cuttings. I’ve tried every type of soil mix that is depicted in the photo below, even though most soil mixtures work. All of them took root, but I’ve discovered the optimal soil combination that works best for us.

The following mixtures are shown in the image up top:

Commercial Succulent Soil Mix Straight Out of the Box:

  • Jack Bonsai Succulent Soil
  • Cactus and succulent soil mix Miracle Gro
  • Succulent Soil Mix by Sun Gro

Soil mixture we created for testing

  • 33 percent each of the following: 33 percent Pumice, 33 percent Pine Bark: Turface MVP
  • Sun Gro Black Gold Succulent Mix, 20%, and 80% Turface MVP
  • 20% of the Micracle Gro Succulent Mix and 80% of Turface MVP
  • 40% Turface MVP (both sifted and unsifted), 40% Pumice, and 20% Pine Bark
  • Turface MVP (sifted and unsifted), Perlite, and Pine Bark make up 40% of the mixture.

Best Soil Mix to Propagate Elephant Bush

I’ve discovered that a soil mixture that can retain moisture for an extended period of time works best for growing Elephant Bush. As seen in the photo below, my current favored soil mixture is 1 part turface mvp-calcined clay, 1 part pumice, and 1 part pine bark.

Because of the pumice, this soil mixture will retain water for a longer period of time while yet allowing extra water to drain through. However, I would advise you to move your newly grown Elephant Bush cuttings to a more quickly draining succulent soil after your stem cuttings have taken root to avoid any root rot.

Both the Portulacaria Afra Variegata that you’ll see a few sections down and the soil described above were used to plant the image below.

When to Water Your Elephant Bush Cuttings

I water this particular soil mixture once or twice a week. I only do this when the earth has been dry for more than a day. I usually wait a day because the bottom is usually still moist. It largely relies on the rate at which your local soil dries out, how humid or dry your environment is, and whether you are propagating outdoors or indoors.

Avoid letting the stem cuttings in this soil dry up too much. You need to reapply water after one day if the soil on top is dry. If you let it dry out, it won’t perish, but it won’t immediately root and grow new leaves.

Best Time to Propagate Portulacaria Afra?

The months of spring and summer are ideal for Portulacaria Afra propagation. When you try to reproduce them during the spring and summer, they will swiftly sprout new leaves because of how quickly they develop during these seasons. I know my cuttings are ready to be transplanted into a faster-draining mix when new leaves start to emerge and grow from them.

Elephant bushes can still be propagated in the winter and fall, however during these seasons, they typically go dormant or at least slow down their growth. Since their roots would be developing below the surface, you might not see any new leaves emerge at all until spring when you try to propagate them during the colder months.

In the midst of winter, when I tried to propagate my Elephant Bush, I noticed no new leaves for four to six weeks till springtime. However, the roots below the surface had significantly expanded. I wasn’t sure at the time if the cuttings were ready for transplantation or not.

How Much Sun is Needed While Propagating an Elephant Bush?

Direct sunlight should be avoided while propagating. Leave it near a window sill with light, but no or very little direct sunlight, if maintained indoors. If kept outside, shield it from the sun’s rays by placing it in a shaded area or beneath higher plants.

When the leaves were being grown in direct sunlight, I discovered burned leaves. Sunburn is likely to develop if the sunshine is too powerful, yet it may not always do so. The plant can’t receive enough water to its leaves because it hasn’t yet rooted, which makes it vulnerable to sunburn.

How Fast Does Elephant Bush Propagate

Elephant Bush stem cuttings can quickly form roots under the correct circumstances. Most of the time, it takes approximately 3 weeks for it to begin to root and another 1–2 weeks for it to begin making new leaves.

My cuttings had rooted the quickest in 3–4 days. And in a further two to three days, fresh leaves began to emerge. This image displays one of our Elephant Bush propagations that was grown quickly.

Can You Propagate Elephant Bush from Leaves?

An elephant bush can be reproduced using its leaves. It just takes a lot longer than stem cuttings and requires a lot more patience, so it’s not my preferred method. For me, taking stem cuttings is just the faster, simpler, and more successful course of action. When healthy leaves fall, I simply toss them back into the pot and watch them flourish. Great if it reproduces on its own.

How to Propagate Portulacaria Afra Variegata

In reality, you can spread Portulacaria Afra Variegata in the same manner as shown above. In fact, I propagated these four Portulacaria afra variegata plants in the same soil and pot before utilizing it with the common elephant bush.

You can see the effects of the four stem cuttings I made from our primary Portulacaria Afra Variegata or Variegated Elephant Bush in the picture below.

Within 3 weeks, this set had roots. Since I didn’t check for three weeks, it probably started to root earlier.

About a week after I replanted the cutting in a larger pot with bonsai jack succulent soil, one of them began to produce new leaves.

How are elephant bushes multiplied?

Elephant bushes are simple to grow from cuttings, just like the majority of succulents. For optimal results, take cuttings in the spring or summer. Plant the cutting in a small container of moist, rocky soil after allowing it to callus for a few days.

Place the cutting in a room with a reasonable amount of light and a temperature of at least 65 °F (18 C.). Maintaining a light moisture level in the soil will help the cutting to take root and grow into a new elephant bush succulent that you can give to a friend or add to your collection in a few weeks.

Where should an elephant bush be chopped down for propagation?

Elephant Bush, often referred to as Portulacaria afra, is a well-known succulent that is indigenous to South Africa. It may reach heights of 3 feet (90 cm) and widths of 4 feet (1.2 m). Elephant Bush can grow in either full sun or shade, does not have a pH preference, but needs well-drained soil. The best way to multiply it is by taking stem cuttings in the spring or summer.

1. Use a clean, sterile razor blade to cut the tip of your elephant bush, which should be between 4 and 6 inches (10 and 15 cm) long. Using pruning shears or scissors can cut into the stem, delaying the healing process.

2. Trim the stem cutting’s lowest leaves, leaving a 2 to 4 inch (5 to 10 cm) part of the stem exposed.

3. Dip the cutting’s stem’s bottom 2 inches (5 cm) in a rooting agent. Excess powder can be removed by tapping the stem against the container. In order to dispose of the extra powder and cup simultaneously, many people opt to pour the rooting powder into a paper cup. This stops the rooting powder bottle from becoming contaminated.

4. In order for the wound to heal and develop a callus, place it in a warm, well-ventilated room. Elephant Bush might take anywhere from a few days to a week to fully heal.

5. Fill a pot with a diameter of 4 inches (10 cm) by mixing one part potting soil with four parts sand or perlite. To level the surface, press the earth down firmly using your hands. This results in soil that has good drainage and offers your cuttings good aeration.

6. Stir the mixture until the stem of the cutting is inserted to a depth of 2 inches (5 cm). To anchor the stem in the ground, compact the soil around it with your hands.

7. To conserve water and stop dirt from overflowing the edges of the pot during watering, sprinkle 0.25 to 0.5 inches (0.6 to 1.2 cm) of gravel over the top of the pot.

8. Use water to wet the ground. Elephant Bush doesn’t normally need to be watered frequently, but it does need consistent moisture for the growth of its young roots.

9. Set up your cutting in an area that is warm, sunny, and well-ventilated. Once the plant has developed roots and fresh growth is visible, move your elephant bush to its final place.

Can Elephant Bush be propagated from leaves?

One of the simplest succulents to grow from stem cuttings is Portulacaria Afras. This seems to be the simplest and quickest way to spread. Although this is not my favourite method, you can also grow roots from leaves.

When the falling leaves settle in the pot, I do leave them alone and let them proceed as they like. Use the entire leaf, including the base, when propagating from leaf cuttings to ensure success. Stem cuttings are my preferred method because I find them to be simpler, quicker, and practically foolproof. Leaf propagation is more difficult and time-consuming in my opinion.

Repotting a Variegated Elephant Bush plant revealed a few rooted leaves.

How to Propagate a Portulacaria Afra Plant:

Obtain a few stem or leaf cuttings, and then let them to dry for about a day.

Dip the cut end in rooting hormone (optional). Although some individuals like to add a rooting hormone to expedite the procedure and ensure success, I don’t really see the necessity for it.

  • Insert the cuttings in a well-draining potting mix after the wound has healed and dried. When utilizing leaves, you can either bury them in the ground or lay them flat.
  • Avoid the sun’s direct rays. Every few days or whenever the soil becomes dry, water it.
  • You will see new roots forming after about two weeks.
  • The cuttings should be fully rooted after four to six weeks, and you will soon see new growth emerging from the top.

You now have it. These plants can be easily multiplied from stem cuttings. They grow all over my house, and I really use them as filler in several of my pots. I’ve also distributed a lot to pals.

In my article “Easiest Way To Propagate Succulents,” I described how I expanded my collection of succulents by using stem cuttings. Being able to expand your collection and having them literally sprout everywhere is a truly satisfying experience.

Can elephant ears be grown in water?

Some species, such the taro or Colocasia esculenta, can be grown in pots in shallow water. Mulching can be useful if you do attempt elephant ear plant propagation in water. Swamps and marshes are home to a wide variety.

Gardeners perform elephant ear plant propagation in water after the last frost by submerging the pots to the rim in an ornamental pond.

How can I get my elephant bush to grow bigger?

Cut a section of stem below a branch or leaf node with a clean, sharp knife, pair of scissors, or shears to take a stem cutting. When transplanting the cuttings, an Elephant Bush with unusually thick leaves will be able to produce numerous cuttings at once, resulting in a bigger plant.

It’s preferable to wait a few days before planting the cuttings to give the cuts a chance to calluse. The cuts will be shielded from any pathogens in the soil of their new container if they are given time to calluse. Despite the low likelihood of infection, it’s always preferable to be safe than sorry.

Additionally, some gardeners choose to grow their Elephant Bush cuttings in water as opposed to soil. You can choose to utilize soil or water; many gardeners find that one option is more effective for them than the other.

Within a few weeks of being planted in water or soil, roots ought to start to show. Cuttings that have been propagated in water can be planted in the soil when their roots are a few inches long.

Make sure to transfer your cuttings to the soil as soon as you feel they are ready because some gardeners may find that if they keep their cuttings in water for too long, the cuttings don’t adapt to the soil as well.

The cuttings can be treated like mature Elephant Bushes once they have taken root and been planted in soil.

Although stem cuttings have the obvious advantage of producing a more complete plant faster, the Elephant Bush can also be produced from leaf cuttings. With leaf cuts, it’s almost like beginning over.

However, you can use any leaves that you unintentionally knock off during trimming or transplanting by growing leaf cuttings. It is advisable to let them dry out for a few days before planting them in the soil to root, much like with stem cuttings.