fiddle leaf fig cuttings in vase

Fiddle Leaf Fig – Let’s Shorten and Propagate!

First of all, my daughter has the Fiddle Leaf Fig. She bought it when we lived together at a different house north of Dayton. Once we sold that house, we each bought our own separate houses and she took the Fiddle Leaf Fig.

I took home the Monstera deliciosa myself ( no, she rebeled and didn’t live except for the cutting I took.) But my daughter took care of a “fussy” Fiddle Leaf and it thrived! and now is 8 foot tall!

dying plant in pot

Now it needs a little pruning and propagation to keep it short enough to fit in her living room!

If this works, we will have a few extra plants for the same planter and make it bushier and shorter. And perhaps one for me to take home!

glossy green leaves of Fiddle Leaf Fig

We ended up with about three large cuttings that would make excellent plants on their own if they should take root. It seems that it should only be a few weeks until we get roots.

Both of us helped each other and we made a video of it so hopefully if you are thinking about it, you may want to try it too.

Fiddle Leaf Fig in white pot outdoors

Our Fiddle Leaf Fig is a healthy plant so it should propagate well. We made sure we are using cuttings that have several leaves to give us the best chance of getting roots.

Rooting hormone is not necessary, but we felt that this would give us the best chance of getting the roots we wanted.

Keep in mind that water propagation can be a slower process compared to other methods like soil propagation, but it can be a visually interesting way to watch the roots develop. Not all cuttings will successfully root using water propagation, so it’s a good idea to try multiple cuttings to increase your chances of success.

Place the glass jar or vase with your cuttings in a warm and bright location that receives indirect light. Avoid direct sunlight, as it can overheat the water and harm the cutting. My daughter has her rooting container in the same room, same lighting, sitting just a few feet away from Momma Plant.

FFiddle Leaf Fig cuttings in clear vase in water

How Quickly Should I Plant Rooted Cuttings Into Soil?

Water roots and soil roots, while both serving the same purpose of absorbing water and nutrients, have some distinct differences due to their respective growing environments. Here’s how they differ:

Water Roots

Water roots that develop from cuttings placed in water are often thinner, more delicate, and more translucent compared to soil roots. They can appear as fine, white, or clear growths.

How To Propagate Your Fiddle Leaf Fig In Water - We Cut Off The Top!

Water roots are adapted to absorb nutrients directly from the water. They have a higher surface area-to-volume ratio, which allows them to efficiently absorb nutrients that are dissolved in the water.

Water roots tend to grow quickly but may not be as strong as soil roots. They are optimized for nutrient absorption rather than anchoring the plant.

Water roots are more sensitive to changes in water quality, temperature, and light. They are not as protected by soil and may be more prone to damage if the water conditions are not optimal.

When transitioning a cutting from water to soil, water roots may take some time to adapt to the new soil environment. They may need to develop additional root structures to anchor the plant in the soil and seek nutrients from the soil.

Closeup of root hairs developing in water
Root hairs in water propagation ( Purple Heart Plant roots so easily) I feel that one shouldn’t wait too long for transitioning to soil. Harder for roots to adapt their “search for water” technique.

Soil Roots

Soil roots tend to be thicker, stronger, and more brown or tan in color. They are designed to anchor the plant securely in the soil and provide stability.

Soil roots are adapted to extract water and nutrients from the soil. They have structures like root hairs that enhance their ability to absorb nutrients from the soil particles.

Soil roots grow more slowly but are better equipped to provide long-term stability and support for the plant. They develop a network that helps the plant access water and nutrients from a larger area.

Being in the soil, these roots are better protected from environmental fluctuations and potential damage, as the soil provides a buffer against temperature changes and physical disturbances.

Roots that developed in soil

When transitioning a plant from water to soil, the plant will need time to develop and strengthen soil roots for anchorage and nutrient absorption in the new environment.

Overall, while both types of roots serve vital functions for the plant, soil roots are better adapted for long-term growth and stability in a soil environment, while water roots are specialized for nutrient absorption in a water medium.

When transitioning a plant propagated in water to a soil environment, it’s important to handle the delicate water roots carefully and give the plant time to acclimate to its new growing medium.

Upclose of leaf petiole on Ficus lyrata
Look at that woody petiole on the leaf!

Waiting For New Roots

Hopefully we will have roots quickly, within a few weeks, and we will plant in a small pot until established. I think planting time should be when the roots are only an inch or two. As I have said, I think it is harder on a plant to transition to soil growing if it is kept too long in water.

Wish us luck! I hope I can have an update of Three New Plants.

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