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Rubber Tree Propagation » Indoor Plant Consultant | New York, NY | (917) 887-8601

Rubber Tree Propagation

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Question:

I was wondering if I could start roots on a rubber tree plant? I cut off the top 6 in of the plant off (I was going to throw it away because it looked so bad, but the top didn’t) so I put them in water. Now I’m not sure what to do if anything with them. If I could save it I would like to.

Answer:

The best way to propagate a Rubber Tree cutting is by air-layering. However, that is only done before the tip cutting is severed from the main tree. Thus, it is not an option and I won’t explain it here.

You have two options with your tip cutting – rooting it in water or rooting it in damp potting mix. The one you choose is more personal preference than anything else. Either way, be sure a “node” is in constant contact with water or damp soil. A node is the slightly raised ridge on the stem where a leaf stem was previously attached. When the node is kept moist, it will trigger new roots at that point.

If you root the tip cutting in water, change the water weekly, provide good light and wait until you have roots at least an inch long before moving the rooted cutting into a small pot filled with damp potting mix.

If you root the cutting in damp soil, provide good light, warm temps and keep the soil moderately damp at all times. If the soil is wet the fragile roots will rot. If the soil gets too dry, the fragile roots will shrivel and die. So proper soil moisture is critical.