spider plant babies

Hollywog(z7soIL)November 27, 2005

I have recieved, over the last couple of years, lots of spider plant babies from co-workers. They have all had roots, and all of them were decent sized plants (about 6 in.) I planted all of them in miracle gro potting soil. All of them have died on me. Well, a couple of them were eaten by my cat, but that's another topic for another post!! This time, a girl cut off the whole 'runner' and I placed the end of it in a water bottle and left the three plants on it for a couple of weeks before pinching off the first 'baby' to plant in a pot in the kitchen. They thrived while on the stem in the water (only the long runner stem was in the water), but now that it has been potted up for about 10 days, the leaves are turning black along the bottom, and it doesn't seem to have really grown anymore roots than it already had. Am I doing something wrong? I don't want to lose the others.

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You should wait until the plantlets have some roots growing from them before potting them up. Use small pots, like 2" or 3" size pots. You can probably fit a couple in one pot if not more. Water one time and let the soil dry out before watering again.The spider babies should root in about a week to ten days or so. Always let the soil dry out between watering. Black on the leaves is an indications of rot, too much water/overpotted.

I have always added a little Perlite to the soil for better draining.Keep them in indirect bright light before and after they root. I wouldn't fertilize until spring and summer months, use very diluted amounts.

You can also try rooting them in water before potting them up. You can use a sandwich baggy or some other kind of plastic that is secured with a rubber-ban over a drinking glass, then with something like a pencil, poke a few holes in it for the bottom part of the plants to root, keep the leaves out and the water level up.

Another way to root them is keep the baby still attached to the runner or stem, then the baby can be pushed down about an inch into soil, either back into the the same pot with the mother or into another one that you want it to grow in, then, when the baby rooted, cut that individual plant off the runner which is still attached to the mother plant.

    Bookmark   November 27, 2005 at 1:10AM
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canttype(0b (Cold North))

I think you might be killing it with kindness!

It's a common problem, so don't worry that it's just you:-) We all have done it!

Unpot the plantlet and take off any soggy, blackened roots and leaves and try again.... Use new soil and add some extra perilite (a hand full or so per pot should do)and plant her up. Water it well and place it in a bright spot with no direct sun for a couple weeks. You realy shouldn't need to water it again in that time, especially if you bag it. Please keep it where your cat can't get at it.... Mine are in the bedroom where she isn't allowed to go...and put it on your list of plants "not to baby" as they are a tough plant and like others on that list,(Pothos, Jades, Hoyas,....) thrive on abuse!

Good luck with it,

Btw. do not fertilize until spring comes back.

    Bookmark   November 27, 2005 at 11:57AM
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NoVaPlantGuy_Z7b_8a(Alexandria, VA 7B/8A)

I have tried twice with baby spider plants. one time, with zero success, it died. That time I potted it up in a small pot.

The second time, I stuck it in the top of a regular old plastic water bottle, filled with water. I wo uld let the water level get very low, to where it was just barely touching the roots, and refill it. It was there for about 4 months. After it had about 3" of new root growth or so, I potted it up. I took off any old brown or blackening roots and leaves, and its done fine the month andd 1/2 its been in soil. I let it fully dry out before I water it good. Its now starting to really grow and is producing new leaves. It seems like its doing just fine, and is on its way to becoming a happy, healthy, flowering adult some day.

Good luck with yours!

    Bookmark   December 1, 2005 at 2:10PM
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My approach was to put a pot of soil under the spider plant baby, while it was still attached to the mother plant, and let it get well rooted before cutting the connecting stem. It works well.

    Bookmark   December 1, 2005 at 3:41PM
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I rooted some babies in water until their roots were about a half inch (or less - I'm impatient!) then stuck them 2 in a pot in a very small square pot (2 inches).I put it right on top of my fluorescent lite on a clear plastic board in the office (no nat. lite). I guess it might be the combo of the fluorescent and the slight heating of the pot by the proximity to the lite but it's rooting quite nicely very quickly. Maybe bright indirect lite as ppl have said + some bottom heat + a small pot will do the trick? My soil was ordinary potting soil. Good luck with yours and I hope my next post isn't "spoke too soon, dead spider plant issue."

    Bookmark   December 1, 2005 at 10:29PM
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Is there anything special you need to do except stick them in water. Is there any of the plant it will hurt being under water?


    Bookmark   July 6, 2006 at 6:04PM
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Try to keep all the leaves out of the water, although sometimes it's tough to keep the smaller bottom ones out, you can go ahead and pull them off, exposing more of the stem.
Put a piece of plastic or tin foil over a glass secured with a rubber-band around the glass and make a few small holes with a pencil point or something sharp, small enough to keep the whole baby from sliding into the water, but big enough for the bottom of the spider to go through and root.

Billy Rae

    Bookmark   July 6, 2006 at 7:33PM
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i really like spider plants.. if anyone has any they can spare, e-mail me at hajir2o@aim.com. thankyou.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2006 at 7:57PM
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NoVaPlantGuy_Z7b_8a(Alexandria, VA 7B/8A)

Just wanted to bring this post back up. The spider plant I referenced in my post above is now 1 year and 1.5 months old from the date of that lastposting. It is now doing great, its getting BIG!!! It has produced one Stolon that really bloomed alot, and has a now BIG "baby" spider on it with ariel roots, and has just put up two more stolons, with lots of flower buds on it. This plant has absolutly THRIVED. At one point, it only had 3 leaves left on it, that was around last winter.

Its amazing just how well it has done, and im about to get my first offspring from it, to give to a friend. =o)

    Bookmark   January 11, 2007 at 12:04AM
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webkat5(Z6a MO)

Great news!!

FYI a shot glass works great for rooting Spider Plant babies...keeps just the end in the water...not the leaves.

You just have to watch the water level more often.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2007 at 1:01AM
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I agree with webkat. The easiest way (if it has no roots yet), is to stick its "butt" in a shot glass and make sure the leaves stay out of the water. I've done this hundreds of times and it's never failed. I even take babies off my spider when they are really small, and they still root! Even in the winter. These plants are just the easiest...love em!

    Bookmark   January 11, 2007 at 11:56AM
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To hajir (above) who asks if someone can send him some spider plants, I would my friend but I live in the UK so they'd die before they reached you! But I wanted to say that E-BAY is a very good source. There's always someone selling baby spider plants nice and cheap! Good luck :)

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 8:19PM
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