Landscaping & Nursery Information for Home Gardeners


Air layering is a process of propagating various houseplants involving the creation of roots on the plant's stem. Air layering is also used to reduce the height of some plants.

Plants commonly air layered include rubber plants, dracaenas, scheffleras and figs.

An upward cut or slit is made in the plant's trunk or stem, approximately one-third (1/3) through. A toothpick is inserted to keep the cut open. Care must be made to prevent cutting the plant all the way through.

The cut area is wrapped with moist peat moss or sphagnum moss, and then covered with a plastic wrap. Make sure the wrap covers all the moss; moss allowed to remain uncovered will dry and act like a wick, drying out the remaining moss. Secure the plastic wrap with tape or twist ties.

Roots should form in a matter of weeks or months, depending on the type of plant. Maintain proper plant growing conditions. Once roots form, cut the plant below the root formation area and repot.

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