Grow your own succulents

JOELIX.com | Baby succulents

One of the many reasons Igor and I founded Urban Jungle Bloggers, is to share our green knowledge. So today I'd like to show you a very simple trick called succulent progagation. Of course you can buy the most beautiful succulent plants everywhere, but it's also a lot of fun to grow them yourself from leaves. I've been doing it for many years now and enjoy sharing the green love by offering baby succulents to friends or by sending some via snailmail.

There are many different ways to propagate succulents, but this is what works for me. First you need a succulent plant with leaves, like the one on the right:

JOELIX.com | Baby succulents

Don't cut the leaves, but gently pull off a few leaves from the stem of the plant. When they don't come off it helps to twist them a little bit. But be careful, it's important to have a clean pull, which means that nothing gets left on the stem.

JOELIX.com | Grow your own succulents

Lay your fresh leaves horizontally on some soil. For my current "mass production project" I used some plates with a thin layer of soil, but you can also lay them on the foot of a plant in a plant pot. My succulents also grow without soil (I sometimes find babies randomly in our home!), but appear to grow faster and stronger with it.

Now you'll want to let your leaves dry out for a few days, so don't water them immediately. After a few days gently sprinkle water over the plate. Water again once the soil is completely dry. I tend to water once every 10 days or less. Just like a grown up succulent, they don't like a lot of water. Place your leaves in a place with lots of indirect sunlight. JOELIX.com | Baby succulents

After a few weeks some miniature white or pink roots will sprout from the tip of your leaves. And a teeny tiny baby plant will start to grow. Oh how I love their cute pink roots:

JOELIX.com | Grow your own succulents

Once your new succulents are a little bit bigger, you'll notice that the initial leaves will become wrinkly, yellow, or dry. You can carefully pull them off and plant your succulent in its own plant pot.

JOELIX.com | Baby succulents

Oh and if you want to send some baby succulents via snailmail, simply wrap the succulents in some moist tissue paper and wrap it in paper (not in a sealed plastic bag!). Most succulent babies are strong enough to survive a few weeks on the road without water.

Have you ever tried growing your own succulent? Do you have any tips & tricks? Or some questions maybe?

51 thoughts on “Grow your own succulents

  1. Aha, further instructions. I did water the babies but will now leave to dry out completely.

    Hopefully I'll get pink roots:-) Will let you know my progress.
    Thank you for sending them and I look forward to having grown my own succulents. Definitely a first for me:-)

  2. Adorable! From the four leaves you gave me in May, two grew and are now doing really well. I didn't notice the pink roots though. Considering my track record with plants, that's a big achievement ;)

  3. My baby succulents survived what, like three weeks without water and sunlight! They are so cute, I already prepared some small cups for them and I can't wait to see them grow. Btw, I've tried the Flower Power on my Aloe, and I'm delighted how it works!! :))

    1. That's great news, Ivana! Very happy that the Flower Power works so well. I love watching it when you water your plant: you can see the humidity rise immediately :D I'm sure the baby succulents will enjoy the company of so many green plants on your balcony :)

  4. This is such a wonderful Urban Jungle Bloggers idea Judith! I remember the little leaves you sent me – they are thriving and growing now on my windowsill in Munich! Little French expats if you want so:-)

    1. Hahaha that's hilarious, French expats :) Then my new goal is to make those French expats travel all around the world… Although Australia seems to be very complicated (they don't let green expats in without quarantine…). Anyway, I'm happy that some are having a great time in Munich!

  5. This is so cool seeing it like this. I have by accident propagated my own succulents and the same variety of what you have I think but I never noticed that cute pink root. I think I'll give it another go. Beautiful xx M

    1. Hahaha, those pink roots disappear fast under the soil ;) But so worth trying again, I think they're are so cute! Have a great week, Mel. Are you still having blissful offline Sundays? xx

  6. Mine arrived before leaving (aug 10 or 11?), and I just wanted to let you know that they are looking rather well and growing super healthy. They were a left in the balcony and seem to be enjoying it over there!! Thank you again!!

  7. I have been except for yesterday because I wanted to finish the 7 Vignette challenge. Funny thing is that if you break the rule for one minute, you end up being sneaky and checking in during the day. It's a bit like giving up smoking ha ha. xx

    1. Exactly! Or like giving up sugar. Once it's not part of your habits anymore, you stop craving it (at least that's what I feel). Hope you're enjoying some more offline bliss this weekend ;)

    1. Yayy! I hope they'll grow to be big and healthy! And if you're very lucky it will grow a branch with the prettiest succulent flowers <3 Enjoy the weekend, Alice!

  8. Hello,
    I just read your blog and I very glad I found it. Do you send succulents in Canada? If yes, do you have other kinds. I would like one that is colored and I will follow your advice to grow them. How does it work, tell me how much it cost and i will send you the money. Merci beaucoup,
    Monique

  9. I'm also have succulent plants .. I tried you advice now it's doing good , I'll love if you send me with colorful succulent like violet and pink. I'm now collecting it but don't know yet the name of them.. Cheers to us .. Having an amazing plant we have .. Nice knowing you.😄

  10. I'm also have succulent plants .. I tried you advice now it's doing good , I'll love if you send me with colorful succulent like violet and pink. I'm now collecting it but don't know yet the name of them.. Cheers to us .. Having an amazing plant we have .. Nice knowing you.😄

  11. i also am amazes with your succulents. I would love. To find some of the colorful. Ones. If you share, I would be happy to reimburse you for the costs. Do succulents grow best inside the home up in the Texas Panhandle, near Amarillo?
    Thank you for all the information,
    Paula S

  12. What an interesting page. This is my first time here and so glad I found it. I wanted to try my hand at some succulents but wasn't sure where the best place was to purchase them. Any ideas? Thank you

  13. Hi!! What a super cool idea!! How long will the process take?
    Love to hear from you, Greets from the Netherlands!

  14. Greetings from Istanbul to you all!! Very glad to come accross to your blog, and many thanks for the hints, very helpful.
    Got a succulent yesterday, namely “telebentisia”, supposedly grows on its own, requires no soil or water, according to the flowerist. Looked up in the internet, but could not find any mention of this name. Does anybody know anything about this plant?

  15. I love succulent babies :-D Thankfully here in Australia we do have some gorgeous ones, and love to propogate them from leaves :-D

  16. Hey Judith. This is awesome,truly awesome I've been thinking I've got it all wrong…the pink roots(tick),the teeny tiny baby succulents (tick), but what I didn't know was what to do next…I thought the yellow shriveled leaves were a bad thing….UNTIL NOW. YOU'RE a LEGEND J. THANK YOU, THANK YOU.

  17. Hey Judith. This is awesome,truly awesome I've been thinking I've got it all wrong…the pink roots(tick),the teeny tiny baby succulents (tick), but what I didn't know was what to do next…I thought the yellow shriveled leaves were a bad thing….UNTIL NOW. YOU'RE a LEGEND J. THANK YOU, THANK YOU from Plymouth UK
    .

  18. I love this article. I love plants but never have the time to actually do anything about it. My wife has a lucky bamboo that is dying, and I told her about propagation… I then took the healthy shoots of the bamboo and have successfully propagated 2 new plants.

    I would love to start propagating succulents. They're my favorites. How does your snail mail work? I would love to get some from you. Let me know. Hope to hear from you.

  19. Now I know what I've been doing wrong. I've been placing the leaves into the soil where the roots would grow, and not laying them down on top of the soil.

  20. I loved your post! My daughter is wanting to use succulents at her wedding and I'd really like to grow them ourselves in mass production like you did. Is there an online source to order some starter plants?

  21. Oh my! I will definitely be trying this (in massive quantities) since I have an obsession with succulents! Thanks for this post and thanks for putting so many pictures where you can actually see the development, it will be very helpful :)

  22. Just wanted to say thank you. I fallowed your steps and I now have my own baby succulents, and I love them so thank you! I love the blog you´re hosting, cant wait to see future posts. Take care! :)

  23. I am now hoked! All I want to grow is succulents even went out after reading this with few dollars I had left to Home Depot and got 3 succulents! Want to trade a few pieces? I want to grow every kind now..I am blessed to have a huge room my craft and sun room..filled with windows every side but one and a deck off it with a greenhouse and hot tub..I love gardening and houseplants//but this is my new kick now..I am going to incorporate some into the garden with designs after seeing the pics! Thanks so much for all this I am following sharing and keeping information very close! LOve to hear back from you and learn even more from you! Teach me!

  24. awesome blog – great idea! Just came across your site today and will definitely send you some if you you want to exchange via snail Mail? Thanks from canada!

  25. awesome blog – great idea! Just came across your site today and will definitely send you some if you you want to exchange via snail Mail? Thanks from canada!

  26. I'm just getting into succulents and am loving it so much! I'm about to have a month off of work to recover from knee surgery and plan to try my hand st propagation. I really am excited!

  27. Hello! I am going to try this for my May 2018 wedding, how far in advance would you recommend propogating? I don't want mine to get too big as they will be in small little jars as wedding favours! I need to make about 105 and will be dividing and conquering amongst my bridesmaids.

  28. I have found propagation of succulents so much fun… I discovered it accidentally when I left some of the leaves on the pot…and they grew babies…and now I'm obsessed!

    You are very generous to your readers… may your succulents be more productive and successful all the time!! Love from South Australia!!???

  29. I got the leaves dipped them in the root powder and they are not rotten or dead they seem healthy but I have yet to see any rooting. I also let them get rained on which I don't think they enjoyed. I heard honey is a natural growth hormone but it seems untrue. They don't like being weighed down. If the leaves aren't getting roots could it be that they are not getting enough sun? Weren't cut well? I'm waiting but I don't see them sprouting. If they don't start to sprout within weeks have I failed? If the leaf is flat and has dried up is it dead? This seems like it should be easy but it's actually seeming to be tricky. I really want to do this. When a succulent flowers are those seeds that you dry up and plant or are they little plants? Any answers would be loved. Anyone who knows where to get good samplers of the really colorful ones I would appreciate any help. Can touching the leaves too much cause problems? Thank you.

  30. I bought a variety of ehat i call “mommy plants” and layed the leaves on paper plate till ends dried out. Then filled up several egg cartons with catus soil. I did mist almost everyday but cut back once i saw pink roots or babies so the roots would go down in the soil. Also added a grow light over top because of all the rainy days we are having.They are doing fantastic. Now i have a lot of them. P.s. it dosnt hurt to talk to them either!!Enjoy

  31. I live in S.Louisiana and when i prop i just pop off and leave on my planting table for about a week or so. they all usually take off really good.
    the problem i have is after getting them to take to soil and grow. i read here that you pop off the new succ from the original???

  32. Greetings from Indonesia, I've just bought some small succulent & looking for articles about it. This will be my 1st time doing magic with plants. Good things found your blog, thank you for sharing ??

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