Aloe Veras are the first-love of any succulent enthusiast. These quirky-looking succulents are easy to care, and make an ideal companion for beginner succulent gardeners. Aloes help in air purification, make ideal skincare partners and offer many medicinal properties. Aloe Vera Propagation is very easy and can save you time, effort and money while getting you lots of new baby plants!
What Makes Aloe Vera Propagation So Easy?
While many consider Aloe Vera propagation tricky, it is very simple. Thanks to Aloe Vera offsets which allow better plant management and care during propagation process. Although some varieties of Aloe Vera, like alow brevifolia, propagate through seeds, most varieties are propagated using their offsets.
What are Aloe Vera Pups?
Aloe Vera offsets, pups or offshots are asexual vegeatative clones used for aloe vera propagation. These plant clones usually grow from the parent plant stem or roots. Aloe Vera pups rely on parent plant for water and nutrient supply. Once their root system is established, Pups take their water and nutrient supply from the growing medium. As a result, the parent plant takes the shape of a clumped plant growing outwards with many pups attached to it.
What is the Best Time for Aloe Vera Propagation?
Aloe Vera Plants start producing offsets once they are a couple of years old. The older aloe plants are healthier and have more offsets attached to their base. Offer your aloe vera plant lots of sunlight to boost offset growth. Alternatively, inject some fresh succulent fertilizer in aloe soil during spring or early summer to accelerate offset production.
Aloe Vera Propagation can be done throughout the year. However, it is recommended to propagate aloe vera during peak growing season – spring and early summer.
How to Do Aloe Vera Propagation Using The Division Method?
Division method for Aloe Vera propagation offers the best results. This method involves using Aloe Vera Offets or pups to grow a baby plant. Here is how to do it:
Separating Aloe Vera Pups from Parent Plant
Step 1: Finding Offsets on Aloe Vera
Inspect your parent Aloe plant for pups on or around the plant’s stem. Some pups may be hidden under the base of mother plant. In some cases, the large leaves of mother plant can be completely blocking the pups from your site. Check every inch of the mother plant’s base carefully and find offsets. Your ideal offset should have at least a few leaves and an established root system.
Step 2: Removing Parent Plant from Soil
Now, it is time to remove the whole plant, with its pups and roots, from the pot. Gently take the entire plant out of the pot. Use your fingers or a trowel to gently brush away as much soil as possible from the offsets. Aloe vera plants grown in a garden bed usually have hard soil around the base, so you will need to use a trowel to loosen the soil. Reveal the pups carefully from the dirt. This process requires extra care, as you do not want to damage parent and baby plant or disturb nearby plants.
Step 3: Separating Offsets from Parent Plant
The next step is to separate the offsets from the mother plant. Use a knife to gently untangle the pups from the base and cut them free from the mother plant roots. Usually, you can remove the pups using your hand but you can also use a knife carefully to remove the pups. Be patient and take every step very carefully as you want to cause little to no damage.
Step 4: Cleaning the Offsets
Once the offsets are separated, it is time to inspect the parent plant and offsets for any damage. Check for any unhealthy or rotten sections on the plant and clean away as many damaged parts as possible. During this proces, make sure not to touch the roots and keep the root system intact with the offsets. Check the parent plant for any damage and clean it as well.
Repotting Aloe Vera Pups for Propagation
Step 1: Rooting Hormone Dipping
Once your offsets are clean and shiny, it is time to dip its root ends in rooting hormone. This step is important as hormone dipping encourages new growth to replace any damages root sections. Although this step is not essential, a hormone dip can faciliate your baby plant’s healthy development.
Step 2: Repotting New Offsets
Prepare dry, well-draining soil, specifically with a succulent growing medium. Take your baby offset and immerse it in the dry soil. Keep in mind that the new roots need to breath, so keep the soil loose and don’t pack it down tightly. Pups will adjust their rooting system with the loose soil more easily after some time.
Step 3: Potting Mother Plant
Taking care of the mother plant is just as important as taking care of its pups! Take the mother plant and put it back in the pot. This step of Aloe Propagation process lets you shift the mother plant into a new or bigger pot. During repotting the mother plant, make sure that you repot the roots at the same depth as that of their old place. The same is applicable for placing mother plants back into the plant bed.
Should You Water your Newly Potted Aloe Vera Plant?
Although the idea of giving your baby Aloe plant a drink is very tempting, it is not recommended. Keep the newly potted baby plant dry for a few days as it accelerates the healing process for any damage cuased during the move. After a few days have passed and you notice dry soil under the surface, begin watering your baby plants and watch them grow gradually!
How to do Aloe Vera Propagation Using Leaf Cuttings?
Leaf cuttings is another method of aloe vera propagation. However, it has lower success rate. Here is how you can do it:
- Use a sharp knife to cut off a leaf portion (the top few inches or whole leaf) of healthy parent plant
- Let the leaf dry for a few days – make sure that the leaf scabs only. If the cut portion rots, discard the leaf and get a new cutting.
- Take a pot and fill it with dry, well-draining potting soil with succulent mix. Stick the cut leaf upright into the mixture.
- Mist cuttings with fresh, clean water till the soil is damp. Do not soak the soil.
- The root system of leaf cuttings will establish on its own and you can adjust the watering schedule after a few days.
- Always drain off excess water to ensure healthy plant development.
Aloe Vera Propagation is easier than you think. During the whole process, ensure cleanliness and proper plant care for the baby plants. A healthy aloe vera plant has green leaves and a well-established rooting system.
Enjoy your new Aloes!
- Aloe Vera plant
- Succulent fertilizer
- Sharp knife
- Pot with drainage holes
- Succulent potting mix
- Rooting powder
- Watering can