How To Copy, Paste & Multiply Your Succulent Plants

Comments (10) DIY & Projects, Home Design & Decor, Lifestyle


If you’re anything like me, there’s nothing more thrilling than free things & nothing more comforting than a home filled with plants. Lucky for people like us, Mother Nature is smart as f***.

Back in December I bought a few house plants; some succulents, a ZZ plant (you can’t kill that shit), a palm (more fussy) - the usual. Since then, they’ve all matured and can have babies! Propagating plants is just a fancy term for essentially copying and pasting plants; creating new plants from existing plants. In most cases, all you need is one or two clippings or in-tact leaves from the plant. Snatch these from parents, friends, plants you already have. I may or may not be guilty of grabbing a single clipping from neighbors yards during evening walks when dusk hides all.

I also may have tripped at a garden center once or twice and gripped onto a plant’s leaf on the way down that  somehow ended up in my pocket. Oh, the mysteries of life.

Some plants require you take clippings and some, just the leaves. For the purpose of this post, I’m going to show you how to propagate a succulent from leaves.

1) Remove Some Leaves Carefully From Succulent Base

Hold your plant by the stem gently and pluck a few leaves taking as much of the base where they meet as possible.

2) Leave Them Alone For 2-6 Weeks

Let the leaves dry out for a few days or even for a week or 2 on a dry surface. Don’t water yet. You want the stems to get calloused and dry. They’ll look a little red and shrivel up a bit, but don’t fret. The beauty of this is that wherever you plucked from on the plant, a new cluster of leaves will grow in a few weeks.

3) Prepare Planters

You’ve waited patiently for your leaves to dry out, so now’s time to get your planters ready! I recommend using flatter, wider surfaces as the roots don’t need 6” of soil deep just yet. I used a loaf pan and a candy dish from Target. Once the plants get bigger over time, you can transplant to their forever pots, but for propagating purposes and to save on potting soil, shallow and wide is best. Fill the bottom inch with some rocks to allow the soil to drain and add in cactus soil, potting soil or soil made for clippings and propagating. It’s less fine and has more dried bits for new roots to cling to. Press soil down so it’s firm.

4) Dip Ends In Honey (Or Rooting Hormone) and Place On Soil

I’ve never used rooting hormone myself, but I’ve had great luck using honey (or honey mixed with some cinnamon). Dip the ends in and lay them flat ontop of the soil. Don’t bury the ends or plant them.

5) Wait!

Over the next few weeks, the leaves will start to grow tiny baby succulents from the base. Watch and enjoy.

6) Snap Leaf Off

Once the baby succulents are large enough that you think they can go it alone, carefully snap the dying “mother” leaf off and throw away. Once each succulent is big enough, you can re-pot. Voila!


I’m currently in step 5 with mine, but I’ll post an update in a few weeks. For me, the more plants the merrier, and there’s no better feeling than being able to give plants to friends and family when they begin to takeover the house.

10 Responses to How To Copy, Paste & Multiply Your Succulent Plants

  1. janice says:

    Interesting post! I loved horticulture class in college so this was fun to read!

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  4. Markito says:

    Dear Morning, Dear,….wait….that just looks and sounds funny. Do you know if you can propagate from an aloe plant leaf that broke off? My sister’s cat jumped and dropped my giant aloe plant, which tore off a leaf. Is it possible?

    PS. I’m currently using your copy-and-paste method to duplicate my mom’s succulent. I’m not sure which kind it is but looks like tiny ears….which is then stretched out.

    • Morning, Dear says:

      Hahah, you’re a funny one. Got me there. Aloe plants can’t propagate form cuttings, but good news! You can propagate from their ROOTS. Leave the leaves, they’ll just rot so try to use them up somehow! Instead, you need the bulb or root at the base of the plant and plant that under a shallow amount of soil and it SHOULD sprout new leaves!

      Haha, hope they work! It seems like they aren’t doing anything for weeks then BAM, they sprouts hairy roots all at once. I’d say 70% of mine so far have roots, the rest might not, or they might surprise me :)

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  6. […] when I was playing around with my camera shooting them with my propagated succulent, I decided, heck, I’m writing a post about WP right this darn minute. So voila! They’ve […]

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  8. […] Adding plenty of plants is also a must! Some of these guys were plants I created myself with propagation, where you pick off a leaf from an existing succulent to create a new plant. Here’s a blog instructional post I made on how to copy and paste your own plants. […]