How To Propagate Peperomia

Certain plant species such as Peperomia happen to be easy to propagate and easy to care for, so why wouldn’t you want more of them?

Peperomia plants are a breeze to look after, and propagating these beautiful plants only takes a couple of minutes to start the process.

It also helps that you can use these methods when the mother plant isn’t looking well, so you can create a few backup plants while you help your original plant recover.

Interested in growing more Peperomia plants for free? Here’s everything you need to know about propagating them.

Propagating Your Peperomia Plants In Three Ways

Peperomia plants are not complicated, but there are a few things you should be aware of, especially when it comes to propagation.

We may think of propagation as being easy (and it is) but for plants, it’s a traumatic experience, which is partly why cuttings are not always successful, as not all plant material will survive the shock.

Besides taking more cuttings than you want to grow, the next best way of ensuring as many grow into new plants as possible is to try and mimic the optimal conditions for the adult plants as closely as you can, water being the exception.

If you’re planning on propagating your Peperomias in soil, aim for a mixture that you’d use on established Peperomia plants. 

While you can use ready-mixed compost specifically for Peperomias, a good way of doing it yourself is to use houseplant compost amended with some perlite or pumice to help improve drainage.

This helps prevent the cuttings from rotting before they have a chance to root.

Another thing to consider is when to propagate. You should always propagate during the growing season of the adult plants, and for Peperomias, this is during spring and summer, when the plant is most active.

This ensures that you get as many new plants as possible, as quickly as possible.

When it comes to encouraging your cuttings to root, keep them in bright and indirect sunlight. 

Save any direct morning sunlight for when they are established plants, as they are vulnerable to strong light at this stage.

Propagating Peperomia Plants Through Leaf Cuttings

Propagating your Peperomia plants through leaf cuttings could not be simpler, and it also means you get as many plants from as few cuttings as possible, preserving the full look of the mother plant.

One thing to note before you start taking leaf cuttings: variegated Peperomia varieties don’t work well with leaf cuttings. They can often lose all the variegation while rooting, so turn to stem cuttings for variegated varieties.

Take some clean and sharp scissors, and the Peperomia plant you want to propagate. It’s a good idea to prepare a tray of damp compost before you start, so you can plant them straight away.

This way, the cuttings lose as little moisture as possible, which helps increase the chances of them rooting.

Take a look at your Peperomia plant. Pick healthy leaves that aren’t too old or too young, and snip them from the plant, leaving a tiny portion of the stem attached to the leaf.

If you have some rooting hormone or even some cinnamon, you can dip the cut ends in there before planting.

Then it’s a simple case of transferring the cuttings straight into the soil, making sure the cut end is under the surface of the soil, and the leaf is facing upward.

Once that’s done, put your tray somewhere warm and bright, preferably sealing it with a clear lid or plastic bag of some sort to help the cuttings along. 

Check the soil occasionally to make sure it never dries out completely but doesn’t get too wet, either. 

Air out the bag or lid every couple of days to keep things fresh, too, and once you see new growth on the cuttings, your plants have rooted!

You can leave the original cuttings on the new plant, or you can cut them off. It’s up to you.

Propagating Peperomia Stem Cuttings In Soil

If you’d prefer to take stem cuttings, this is a very easy way of getting new plants quickly. 

Again, prepare your container, tray, or several pots first, filling them with damp compost with some added perlite for extra drainage.

Always take cuttings from healthy material, as this helps determine how healthy the resulting plant will be.

Take more stem cuttings than you think you might need, making sure each one has a few leaves attached and a portion of the stem.

Strip the lower leaves from your cuttings, and pop them into the soil, deep enough so that they can stand up on their own.

Cover the pot or tray with a plastic bag or lid, and put the cuttings somewhere warm and bright. 

Every few days, air out the bag or lid to keep everything fresh and make sure the compost stays damp but not wet, which will ensure your cuttings continue to grow.

Exactly how long it will take for the cuttings to root depends on the growing conditions, but they should do so within a month or two.

Some people like to pull on the cuttings to see if they’ve rooted, the idea being that the cuttings will offer some resistance at this point.

It will, but it is easy to break your cuttings by doing this! A sure sign that your cuttings have rooted is when new growth forms.

Peperomia Stem Cuttings And Water Propagation

If you don’t fancy propagating your cuttings in soil, water is a great alternative. Just like the methods above, it’s a good idea to prepare the container before you go to town with the scissors on your plant.

For propagating in water, it is a good idea to use a see-through container such as a jar or a vase, so you can see when the roots form. 

It also helps that you can see the state of the water, as you’ll need to replace it as soon as it gets murky or changes color.

Whatever you use, make sure it is sterilized. Wash it in hot soapy water, and rinse thoroughly. Make sure there are no suds or anything before filling with fresh water.

Then you’re ready to take some cuttings.

Taking Peperomia stem cuttings couldn’t be easier, as you don’t even need a node or a growth point attached. These plants will grow just fine with a stem and a leaf and nothing else.

Make sure the cuttings are healthy and don’t have any signs of damage. Then pop them straight into the water, making sure that each cut end is below the surface of the water.

Put the vessel somewhere warm and bright, and don’t let the water level get below the cut ends of your cuttings, as this can stop them from growing roots.

You’ll notice that the roots that will eventually develop will be white, and somewhat translucent, even ‘hairy’. 

These are water roots, so when you transfer your cuttings to the soil, it may take a while for your plants to adjust and grow soil roots.

As the roots get bigger, you’ll also see baby leaves form from the roots, which is a brand-new plant.

Don’t be tempted to separate the new plant from the cutting at this stage, as it is too small to fend for itself.

Wait a couple of weeks for it to grow bigger, and then cut it from the stem, planting it up in a suitable pot that won’t be too big.

A good size is those tiny pots you’d use to start seedlings off in. You can always transfer the new plant to a bigger pot once it needs it, but for now, the smallest pot possible is the best option, as it will stop it from drowning in boggy soil.

Peperomia plants have delicate and small root systems at the best of times, so always go for a small pot to begin with.

Final Thoughts

Peperomia plants are easy to propagate, but exactly which method you should go for depends on whether the species is variegated or not.

If it is variegated, don’t take leaf cuttings, as the variegation isn’t always carried through to the new growth, and you’d have better results from taking stem cuttings.

You could also divide a large Peperomia plant, but as the roots are fairly fragile, it’s a good idea to take cuttings and propagate that way.

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