There are numerous ways of propagating Pilea Peperomiodes, and one of them has to do it with a single leaf. It’s not the easiest method, it’s not the fastest method, but it is fun to try. Wanna give it a go? Then read on below.
One may wonder if the Pilea craze will ever end, and although the height of interest seems to have decreased a great deal around Europe, an all-time high was reached in the US and the rest of the world in the summer of 2020, according to Google Trends. With more people getting their own Pilea plant there are also even more people who are curious about propagation, because let’s be real … who doesn’t want Pilea babies?
One of the questions I have received many times on Instagram has been around Pilea leaf propagation: Can you root a Pilea leaf, and how do you do it?
So let’s dive straight into those questions.
Does a Pilea leaf root in water?
Yes, a Pilea Peperomioides leaf is perfectly capable of growing roots in water.
How do you root a Pilea leaf?
You need a healthy leaf to begin with. A healthy leaf is a leaf that has been cut off and not accidentally fallen or broken off. Place the leaf in water and place it in bright but indirect light. Make sure to change the water weekly.
Does a Pilea leaf in water automatically grow babies?
No. Just putting a Pilea leaf in water will not guarantee that you get a new Pilea plant.
How do you grow Pilea Peperomioides from leaf?
The key to success with rooting and propagating a Pilea leaf lies within the removal method. As mentioned above, breaking a leaf off or finding a fallen leaf will not give you a healthy new plant. Even cutting of a petiole randomly won’t necessarily get you anything but a leaf with a lot of roots. You need a bit of the trunk along with your leaf, in order to grow a new plant.
What does a Pilea propagated from a leaf look like?
It looks like the image below: a petiole with a shoot growing from the bottom where the bit of the trunk is. Notice how the new shoot is also sending out shoots from nodes on its own stem. It’s absolutely fascinating if you ask me.
Leaf propagation as a method
Although leaf propagation of Pilea Peperomioides is fun to try, it’s probably also the least efficient way of getting your Pilea to grow babies. It’s a technique that is less bulletproof – you usually need a couple of leaves to ensure there’s at least one success. And even then it will take years for the new plant to reach “normal size”.
When growing a Pilea from a leaf you will end up with a bit of an unusual looking plant. One very long petiole and a much smaller plant, as seen in the photo above. Small sizes and odd-looking plants can absolutely be charming, but my point is, that this is not the smartest way to propagate if you are in it for the sake of propagation and not experimentation.