Aloe vera is a plant that keeps on giving. If your plant is happy and healthy it may begin to make pups or baby aloes that grow alongside the mama aloe. Today, we’ll talk about how to propagate aloe vera using these pups, and how to propagate an aloe vera leaf.
These pups can be removed fairly easily, and planted in their own pot. It’s important to understand you don’t have to move the pups if you don’t want to.
Eventually, the pups will crowd the pot, and you’ll need to replant the aloe in a bigger pot.
Creative Things To Make Using Aloe Vera
Also, check out Benefits for Aloe Vera
Before Planting Aloe Vera Pups
- Choosing the right container is important. Terra-cotta is a porous material, which is great to use for succulents. The porous material will let the soil dry between waterings. It’s also heavy enough to keep the heavy aloe from tipping over. Plastic or glazed planters can also be used, but they do hold more moisture.
- Preferably, choose a container with a drainage hole. Don’t add gravel, or other drainage material, since this will take up viable space for roots to grow.
- The soil you use should be a well-draining potting mix. There are special mixes made just for succulents (see below for suggestion).
How to Propagate Aloe Vera Pups (Indoors)
To propagate aloe pups, you’ll need some nice planters. I love terra cotta. It’s relatively cheap. You can find terra cotta online, at Lowes or Home Depot.
A spoon and a fork will do the job, but this succulent transplanting tool kit is inexpensive, and works even better!
- Optional* Remove the aloe from the pot, and place it on a clean dry area, like the kitchen table covered with newspapers. (You don’t have to remove it from the pot however, it does make it a little easier to remove pups.)
I didn’t remove this one from the pot because they were already fairly loose.
- Gently scrape away the soil around the pups, either using a fork and spoon or a special succulent transplanting tool kit.
- Once you get as much of the soil away from the roots gently pull the pup out, trying to keep as much of the roots as possible.
Lay the pups down somewhere while you prepare the soil if you haven’t already.
- Replant the pups in their own containers, using a soil mixture aloe will love. The bottom of the leaves should just rest on the surface of the soil.
Leave 3/4 headspace in each planter, so water has a chance to be absorbed by the soil, instead of running out of the pot and making a mess!
- Place the aloe pups in a warm, sunny window, but not in direct sunlight. At least until they have had time to begin to set in their roots.
- Let these pups settle for one week before watering them.
- Wait until the water completely dries out to water them again.
Watering Baby Pups
Baby aloe may need to be watered a little more to help them take root. Just be careful not to overwater them. They can get root rot from being over watered.
Water the aloe pups when the soil is completely dry. Depending on the type of soil, light conditions, and temperature you may water the aloe vera pups anywhere from once a week to once every 3 weeks.
The trick is to water when the soil is completely dry. If you water it too much you may have issues with root rot. If you have issues with any of your aloes like turning brown, white, shriveling, or more, check out my post on Aloe vera troubleshooting.
My big mama aloes are currently in a potting soil not meant for aloe. It’s okay to use regular potting soil even for potting pups, especially when growing them indoors.
They’ll need less water this way since the soil is denser than necessary. Also, pups will take longer to root in regular potting soil. They might even turn brown, and look a little sad for a while.
If this happens, water them as usual, and usually, they bounce back and start growing strong.
You can add pumice or perlite to lighten the density of the soil. Although, this isn’t very necessary if you have a well-draining soil, and planter made out of a material like terra-cotta.
How to Propagate Clumps of Aloe Pups
If you have pups that are clumped together, and are impossible to separate you can replant them together.
Just separate the clumped pups from the mother, and replant as a group. You want to use a planter that will allow some room to grow in. When they outgrow the pot, simpy upgrade them to an even bigger planter.
How To Propagate Aloe Vera Leaves Or Cuttings
Using cuttings can be a hit or miss way of propagating aloe vera. The best way to propagate is by using the pups.
- Start by cutting one leaf close to the stem.
- Allow this cutting to sit for one week, while it forms a thin dry layer, like a scab closing up a wound.
- Prepare your pot with succulent soil.
- Poke a small hole in the soil about 2 inches in depth, or more if you have a very large cutting.
- Dab a little bit of rooting hormone, or honey on the cutting edge of the aloe leaf.
- Place the leaf in the soil, and crowd the soil around it, so that it stands up straight.
- Don’t water the cutting for about a week.
- After the first watering, allow the soil to completely dry out before watering again.
My friends over at Insteading made a great list of succulents. Go on over and check out what else you can grow!
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