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How to Propagate Aloe Vera From Cuttings & Offshoots

how to propagate aloe vera
Photo: CC0 Public Domain / Pixabay – Bstad

Master the techniques of how to propagate aloe vera using either leaf cuttings or offshoots and boost your gardening game with our step-by-step guide to aloe vera propagation.

Did you know that aside from being a beautiful and air-purifying houseplant, aloe vera also has remarkable natural healing properties? The gel from aloe leaves can soothe sunburns, hydrate skin, and more. What’s even better, aloe vera propagation is a breeze and requires minimal effort, making it the perfect plant for any busy plant parent.

Once you have your aloe vera plant or leaves to spare, learn how to make aloe vera gel and started enjoying its many benefits.

Let’s look at how to propagate aloe vera using two easy methods.

How to Propagate Aloe Vera Using Offshoots

how to grow aloe vera from leaf
Want to learn how to propagate aloe vera? The first thing you’ll need is a mature aloe vera plant. (Photo: CC0 Public Domain / Pixabay – Marc Egaral)

To start, you’ll need an aloe vera plant that is already a few years old. Mature aloe vera plants produce pups, also called offshoots or offsets, which are clones that grow from the mother plant.

Here’s how to propagate aloe vera using plant offshoots:

  1. Look for an offshoot that has at least four leaves and is at least one and a half inches high.
  2. Gently separate the pup from the parent plant, being extra careful not to damage the roots. In most cases, you can simply pull the offshoot gently to remove it. However, if necessary, use a sharp, sterilized knife to cut it away from the main stem. To prevent your aloe plant from getting infected, allow the site of the cut (otherwise known as the wound) to dry in the sun for two to three days. 
  3. Cover the bottom of a small flower pot with clay shards or gravel.
  4. Fill the pot with succulent or cactus potting mix.
  5. Plant the aloe vera offset in the pot, making sure to cover the roots.
  6. Place the pot in a warm, sunny place.
  7. Water your aloe vera plant sparingly — only when the soil feels dry to the touch.

How to Grow Aloe Vera from Leaf Cuttings

how to propagate aloe
Propagating aloe vera using leaf cuttings is a bit tricky. Make several cuttings to increase your chances of success.

Like many other plants, aloe vera can be grown from leaf cuttings. It’s best to use one of the thicker leaves. This method is especially good for bringing new life to old plants. The chances of the leaf actually taking root vary, so it’s a good idea to make several cuttings at once. The best time to do this is in March or April, or whenever spring starts in your region. 

Here’s how to propagate aloe vera using leaf cuttings:

  1. With a sharpened, sterilized knife, cut off one of the healthiest outer leaves. Cut as close as possible to the main stem.
  2. Let the leaf air-dry for several days in a warm place. This lets a protective layer form on the site of the cut and reduces the chance your leaf will rot. 
  3. Cover the bottom of a planter pot with gravel or clay shards, to promote better drainage later. Fill the pot with a mixture of cactus potting mix (or normal potting soil) and sand. The mixture should be in a 1:1 ratio.
  4. Water the soil so that it is moist but not wet.
  5. Embed the aloe vera leaf lengthwise in the soil, so that about two-thirds of the leaf is visible.
  6. Place the pot in a warm, sunny spot. For about four weeks, make sure you keep the soil consistently moist to encourage the leaf to develop roots.
  7. After the leaf takes root, wait until the soil is completely dry before watering it again. 

How to Use Aloe Plants

Now that you know how to propagate aloe, make sure you care for it properly. Aloe can live for years! Read our guides to learn how to stop an aloe plant turning brown and what to do about an overwatered aloe plant.

Once your aloe plant matures and produces aloe gel, or if someone has given you an aloe leaf, here’s everything you need to know:

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