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by Adri Zhao
(New York, NY)


The original plant , growing new leaves at the cut


I’m a beginner plant enthusiast and I decided to start with the “simple and easy” succulent.

I’ve bought a succulent at a local super market and didn’t think too much of it. Since it was summer I left it outside to get some sun, especially because my plant looked a bit leggy. I live in New York and this summer, we got a couple of rainy days, but I checked the succulent periodically. After 2 months, I noticed it had grown and I decided to play around with propagating the plant.

I plucked out the leaves and left them on 2 different trays with succulent soil. It’s been a four weeks and most of them have grown roots and have tiny plant babies already, but I realized that my plant might be infected and the brown, dry spots on the underside of the leaves were not sunburn, as I initially thought.

Should I continue with the propagation or terminate, as I read the infection could spread to other plants? I also read that these spots may not affect the plant, but only cause deformation, is it worth it to continue?

Comments for To propagate or to not propagate

Aug 30, 2017

Don’t quit now!
by: Jacki

You’re having amazing success with this – new baby plants all over the place!

The damage seems to be limited to only a few leaves, and is most likely from the plant falling over, or being handled roughly at some time.

This won’t affect the new plants, which will grow out of the ‘mother’ leaf and it will dry up and shrivel as they get enough of their own roots.

I don’t think it’s contagious, in other words. If you’re worried about it, cut off the damaged parts – and above all, don’t over water from above. Use a small spray bottle and only spray the soil around the new baby plants, not on top of the leaf.

Aug 30, 2017

by: Adri

Thank you so much for you response, Jacki. I gotta say, I’m relieved because I was feeling a bit sad that all the time I’ve already put in may have to go in the garbage.

I will continue to care for the babies and pot them soon. It looks like leaving the succulents outside can be too uncertain with all the rain.

But indoors, I try to only water them if I see that the soil is dry (lighter color.)

The interesting thing, though, is that I had 2 separate trays with the leaves. One tray I’d soak the soil once a week, the other I’d spray lightly every day.

The soaking once a week developed babies quicker. Also, some leaves were a bit slower and I decided to cover the tips with more soil and they soon started growing roots more quickly. I figure the moisture encouraged the growth, but I also don’t want to over water them.

I’m excited to have a bunch of succulents in the house now! =)