Make Your Houseplants Multiply: The Magic Of Propagation
When people ask Katie Tilford to diagnose plants that are strangling under their own weight, or bursting out of their pots, she’s happy to give them the good news.
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No, you don’t need to buy a bigger pot. And even better news? Congratulations, your houseplants are about to have babies!
Houseplant lovers may be well-versed in the finer points of misting, mites, and mulch, but there’s one area that still stumps many of us: Plant propagation.
“I don’t think people realize just how easy this is,” said the Los Angeles-based certified horticulturist, who is teaching a D.I.Y. class on the topic this Saturday at Heavy Manners Library in Echo Park. “It’s not that intense and scientific, this is something anyone can do at home.”
Plant parents are encouraged to bring their own plants to the workshop, so Tilford can guide them through the process right then and there.
Tilford, is founder of @Tinyplants, which hosts plant pop-ups and classes across Los Angeles, and an executive assistant at the Theodore Payne Foundation, the go-to resource for native SoCal plants. She also lives in an East Hollywood apartment with a yard — and more than 200 plants. (“Actually, I’ve lost count,” she says.) She will be operating on many of her own overgrown plants for the demonstration, and giving away the cuttings to attendees, including a philodendron, various succulents, a rhipsalis and other cacti.
“Everyone is guaranteed to walk away with new free houseplants,” she said.
Put simply, plant propagation is just dividing up plants that have done such a good job of growing, that they’ve multiplied, she said. Tilford will explain how to cut and break apart such “offsets” and “pups,” and offer guidance for what to do next. (Some plants do best going into water, where new roots can set, while others thrive going right back into potting soil.)
“One plant can turn into five other plants,” she said. “I’m really into being frugal and not wasting things. It’s kind of like a craft, but with living things.”
— Rene Lynch
More info: Tinyplants Houseplant Propagation Workshop