Various rooting hormones are available in the market nowadays that can help your succulents grow beautifully.
But many of them contain harmful chemicals for your beloved succulent.
This is why alternatives such as honey are a great way for you to grow your plant once you have propagated it.
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How to Propagate Succulents with Honey
Honey as a rooting hormone helps speed up the process of rooting. First, you will have to take a leaf or stem cutting, then let it dry for three to four weeks. Then dip the cut end in honey and let the plant rest on the soil while you occasionally spray it with water.
Propagating Succulents Using Honey
There are various methods to propagate your succulent cuttings. But water and soil propagation are what gardeners commonly use to propagate them.
Succulents can easily multiply with a good stem or leaf cutting. The easiest way to increase your succulents in number is by propagating them.
Even if the succulent does end up growing roots in water propagation, they become too sensitive, and the plant cannot be transferred into the soil.
Thus, the other alternative is placing the succulents in soil. But growing the succulent in the soil can take a long time if rooting hormones are not used.
Chemical rooting hormones are bad for the environment, which is why it is better to use natural ones such as honey.
The following steps will now tell you how to use honey in propagating your succulent.
Step 1: Get Your Cuttings
You can propagate your succulents by using their leaves or stems.
You can gather your cuttings both ways to ensure that you get the best cutting for your new plant.
The cutting should be taken from the mother plant as it will be matured and strong enough to last the propagation process.
You should try to take your cutting from near the base of the plant and make sure they are healthy and plump.
The cutting should not be difficult to take as you can remove the leave gently by simply twisting them.
Make sure you do not damage the leaves of your plant while you twist off the part you wish to propagate.
If the leaves do not remove easily by hand, then use equipment such as scissors or secateurs. Make sure that any equipment used is sanitized.
From the stem cutting, choose the offshoots from the main stem that are not soft. Use a pair of secateurs or scissors and cut off the stem just above the leaf node.
Make sure you are mostly taking cuttings, as you will not want to have too many long pieces of stems for propagation.
Step 2: Let the Cuttings Dry Out
Usually, you’re supposed to place the cutting in soil or water as fast as possible.
However, when it comes to propagating with honey, you must first let the cutting dry out before placing it in the soil.
Succulent propagate better in soil when the end of the stem or leaf cutting has been callused.
Callusing is done by letting the cutting dry out and doing this prevent diseases from entering the plant.
To dry out the cutting, just place it on a piece of newspaper, cardboard cutting, or even a paper towel, and keep it in a warm, dry area.
Placing the cutting outside under indirect sunlight will help the cutting dry up faster.
Keep observing the cutting until you see that the ends have started to callus.
For this whole process to complete, you’ll need to wait at least 3-4 weeks.
Step 3: Ready Your Propagating Tray
Since your cuttings will be drying out for three to four weeks, you can start preparing your propagating tray. The tray you use should be clean and sterilized.
You can make your own growing mix or use a premade propagation mix.
You can even make the mixture with potting mix, perlite, and coconut fiber.
This combination provides a good open mix that will allow your roots to form freely.
Step 4: Dip Succulent Cuttings into Raw Honey
It is important for you to use raw honey in this process and not the one you find in supermarkets.
Simply dip the cut end of the stem or leaf into the honey and make sure it is coated properly.
When using leaf cuttings, just place them right on top of the soil. Do not bury the cutting into the soil.
There is no need to bury the cutting as it will eventually grow roots from the cut end of the leaf.
As time passes, the roots will grow long enough to make their way down the mix.
In the case of stem cutting, it’s better to make a small hole in the soil with a pencil before you push the stem into the soil.
This will ensure that the honey does not get rubbed off while you push the stem into the soil.
Step 5: Mist the Cutting Everyday
You must mist the cutting every day to keep it moist. Do not water the soil; just simply mist the cutting throughout the day.
Misting will help create humidity around the plant, and this simulates root growth for most plants.
Step 6: Wait for The Roots to Appear
You will now have to be patient as it can take your cutting several weeks before it starts to produce any roots.
Just make sure you mist them every day so that the rooting hormone can also do its job.
Step 7: Place Your New Succulent in a Pot
After the cuttings have produced roots and they start to grow more, you can then place the succulent into their own pots.
Handle the succulent gently to avoid breaking the roots or other plant parts.
Make sure you use a good quality soil mix to place your new plants into. The mixtures should be at least one part perlite, one part sand, and two parts potting mix.
You can also buy any succulent commercial mix from the market that has good reviews.
How Honey Helps with Succulent Propagation
Honey is an anti-fungal as well as a natural antiseptic. Thus, they keep out the bacteria and fungus from the soil while acting as a natural rooting hormone for plants.
When using synthetic rooting hormones, it’s easy to see the results in three or four days as the cutting will root within that time span.
However, when it comes to honey, rooting can take a much longer time.
Anywhere from seven to fourteen days is common. Honey is one of the best natural rooting hormones since it is available in most houses.
It has been known to produce roots more than any other natural form of rooting hormone.
Since honey has natural antiseptic and anti-fungal properties, it can deter bacteria and fungus from growing on the cuttings.
Properties present in honey are also known to stimulate the same type of rooting hormones as synthetic hormones.
Some people suggest mixing honey in boiling water before you use it on the stem or leaf cutting. But the heat can destroy many of the natural properties of honey.
This is why it’s important to remember that during all this process, raw honey should be used and not the one found in grocery stores.
Honey found in markets is heat-treated and contains other additives.
Things to do After Succulent Propagation
Once you see that your plant starts growing, don’t instantly move it into a pot; instead, wait for a few weeks.
Allow the roots to develop well and strengthen themselves for a few weeks. Once the roots have developed well, you can remove the old leaf present on the stem during propagation.
Then plant your succulent into a proper pot with a good soil mix.
Keep your new plant under a shade for a few days and then slowly expose it to bright sunlight over the next few weeks.
Be patient and let your succulent grow at its own pace so that it can grow into a beautiful plant.
Another thing you can look into is placing the plant in the right soil. There are various succulent types, and each has its own demands for soil as well.
But overall, it is better to use soil that drains well so that the roots do not rot. Since succulents hold on to a lot of water, not watering them often should be an issue.
You should also use a well-draining pot, as well-draining soil is useless if the water has nowhere to leak out from.
Use a pot that has small holes at its bottom for draining of excess water from the soil.
Then place your plant under sunlight after keeping it under a shade for a short period of time.
Succulents grow well under the sun since they grow in the desert region.
If your succulent plant changes color, then it needs more sunlight. During winter, you may need to use lighting tools to help meet the demands of your succulent plant.
Watering the plant properly is also important. You shouldn’t water the plant too much or too little.
Excess water will always drain from the drainage holes, but it can be dangerous if your pot does not have proper drainage holes.
However, not giving your succulent enough water will also cause it to die. Thus, you must observe your plant to make sure it is neither over-watered nor under-watered.
Easy Succulents to Grow with Honey as Rooting Hormone
Echeveria is one of the most favored succulents for plant lovers since they have a thick rosette structured leaf. They grow slowly, and once they grow, they spread out.
They’re known to produce many offshoots and baby plants.
This plant grows well under full sunlight and in well-drained soil.
Rotting is one of the main issues you will face with this plant since it is sensitive to water.
This is what makes it perfect for honey as a rooting hormone when propagating this plant. This is because it needs to be propagated in soil and does not need much water.
Jade plants are easy to grow plants, even if they are grown outdoors or indoors. They are very resilient and can survive for a long period of time.
They have leaves shaped like ovals and thick woody stems.
This plant has the appearance of a miniature tree and is also another favorite for indoor plant owners.
Jade plants also like warm temperatures and are not as resistant to drought when compared to other succulent species. Jade plants need regular watering intervals for them to thrive.
They are also not suitable for cold weather places. You can easily propagate Jade plants from leaf or stem cuttings.
The leaf and stem will need to be kept outside for a few days to callus over.
Once callused, the plant can be placed on the soil once it has been dipped in honey as it’ll play the role of rooting hormone.
Sedum is one of the largest species of succulents, and they have thick fleshy leaves as well as stems. Sedum also produces flowers with beautiful star shapes.
Otherwise known as stonecrops, sedums are good for rock gardens and can gradually cover rock walls once they grow and spread.
This plant can be propagated using seed, stem, and leaf-cutting.
Stem and leaf-cutting are the most common ways through which the Sedum plant is propagated.
Propagating it with honey is the same for any other plant. The Sedum plant is more likely to survive the honey propagation method since it does not require much water.
The kalanchoe plant is known famously for its brightly colored flowers. It is also called the widow thrill.
Kalanchoe thrive in bright but indirect sunlight and only needs once a week watering. This plant can also be propagated through seed, stem-cutting, and leaf-cutting methods.
Stem cutting is most commonly used since its roots are more likely to rot if placed in water.
This plant is also easy to grow with honey as a rooting hormone due to its low water demands.
Graptovrias are tiny succulents that are suitable to plant as indoor plants. They have small rosette leaves that are also fleshy.
Like any other succulent, this plant also enjoys staying under bright sunlight and prefers good humidity levels in summer.
They cannot survive if they are over-watered, which is why they do not need to be watered daily.
Since it is a small decorative plant, it can be placed in pots.
The Graptovrias come in many different varieties with many different colorful leaves. They can easily be propagated from leaf-cutting and offsets.
Aloe Vera is considered the mother of all succulents since it comes with endless benefits.
It has a green color on the outside but has a clear, thick gel inside of it that can be used for many things.
It has the same propagation steps as any other succulent plant, first cut, then dry, followed by application of honey, and then finally potting it.
It is also important to know failing to water Aloe Vera over a long period of time will cause its leaves to crack.
Benefits of Honey as a Natural Rooting Hormone
Honey is an organic rooting stimulant and is a great option for environmentally cautious people. They work best for propagating succulents since they don’t need too much watering.
However, this only applies to raw honey and not honey present in your house for food purposes. Processed honey can have sugars and other additives in it.
The pasteurization process of honey makes it lose several valuable elements.
Honey allows the propagation time to go by smoothly by allowing the plant to grow its roots uninterrupted.
Honey is also readily available in its raw form and is known to give a high success rate of producing roots.
It is not the fastest propagation method, but it more affordable than synthetic hormones.
Frequently Asked Questions About How To Propagate Succulents With Honey
Does honey help succulents in any way?
Honey does help succulents in many ways since it has antiseptic and anti-fungal elements. These elements can help you to keep bacteria and fungi away from your propagated succulent plant.
Can propagated succulents be placed in water with honey as a rooting hormone?
Honey itself does not contain any hormones, but it does help plants root. When it comes to water propagation, you can place your propagated succulent plant in water, with honey as a rooting ‘hormone’.
Daniel has been a plant enthusiast for over 20 years. He owns hundreds of houseplants and prepares for the chili growing seasons yearly with great anticipation. His favorite plants are plant species in the Araceae family, such as Monstera, Philodendron, and Anthurium. He also loves gardening and is growing hot peppers, tomatoes, and many more vegetables.