So you want to propagate Nepenthes via cuttings?? Here are a few things you should know...
First we recommend having a cutting with at least three nodes.
You want to place one node under the media and have the remaining two above the media. You can take cuttings with more nodes and place more under the soil if you like however, that is not necessary. In the picture below you can see where I am pointing to the three nodes. I have also cut away the bottom leaf so the bottom node can go into the soil.
Second you want to use a good rooting hormone.
We like using the Clone-x rooting gel. It has worked well for us. In the image below you can see a slight purple tint where I dipped the cutting into the rooting gel up to the first node.
Third you want to root in high humidity.
If your grow space has a humidity level of less than 70%, then you can set up a little plastic tub or terrarium that has some holes or mesh that allows for some air exchange. We do not recommend rooting in a sealed bag.
Commonly asked Questions:
How do I know if I should cut the leaves??
If you are rooting in an environment with 70% humidity or higher, we have found its not necessary to cut the leaves. The reason people recommend cutting the leaves in half when you take a cutting is to help with water lost through the leaves during transpiration. When you cut the leaves, you are reducing the area through which your cutting can lose water. This is important when trying to root cuttings in lower humidity environments. However, if you root in 70% humidity or above and keep your cutting well watered, we have found it to be beneficial to leave the leaves intact.
How long will it take my cutting to root??
Honestly, it just kind of depends. For most nepenthes I would say about six weeks or so but others can take several months to root.
When can I take cuttings from my Nepenthes??
Whenever you would like! We have not found a best time of the year or that it really matters all that much. We tend to take most of our cuttings in the spring or summer just because the plants are vining much faster but we have also taken cuttings throughout the year.
Should I cut the main vine or the basal??
We tend to like cutting the main vine. This leaves the basal with a large root system and it tends to grow much faster after the main vine is cut. However, if you like you can cut the basal and root it instead. It's really whatever your preference is!
What media should I use for my cuttings??
There are many different media mixes you can use. You can root Nepenthes in a mix containing any of the following: long fiber sphagnum moss, peat moss, coco peat, coco chips, or perlite. We recommended using what you have or what is easily accessible for you. We used to use long fiber sphagnum moss mixes but over the last few years LFS moss has become harder to get in large quantities. We switched to using coco products and have had similar results. With coco products you want to be sure to rinse or wash your media to help get rid off any excess dissolved solids. If you have a TDS meter (total dissolved solids) then you can aim for under a TDS under 70. As you top water it will help lower the TDS from there. The key with whatever mix you decide to root in is for it to be able to retain moisture and be airy. If your cutting stays too water-logged it will be more likely to rot.
I hope you find this blog helpful! If you have any additional questions or concerns feel free to email us at email@example.com or you can contact us on social media. Thanks for reading and happy propagating!