Ever since I can remember, our house in Italy had flowers and plants. Apart from the garden always filled with colors, my grandfather often came back with seasonal flowers. One of his friends had a banco at the market where he used to bring flowers and plants from his serra or flower shop. My mom also loves to have a little touch of green inside the house, not just outside.
We had red gerani on the balcony and purple flowers hanging from it in summer. Plus, little plants that families gifted my mom at the end of the school year.
Apparently though, one of the oldest green friends is also the one that we still have in our rooms. When my parents moved in this house, they brought along a potos and apparently I wanted to snack on that when I was learning how to crawl. I only crawled that one time and my mom caught me just as I was opening my mouth to eat a leaf (potos plants are poisonous).
That potos is the only one plant that survives in every corner of this house: it’s fine with every light, humidity level and temperature. And through the years my mom has propagated that plant mostly in water.
It was normal then that when I was feeling alone during the pandemic she cut a small branch of her potos and gave it to me to bring in my apartment in Germany. It’s a pretty easy task where you just have to cut below one of the branches’ small roots (the brown spuntoni or spikes), put the new branch in water and wait. In less than a week my little friend started to sprout roots. I then periodically changed vase as it grew.
A couple of months after I became a plant mom, I found a little thing at the German supermarket. It was just before or after Christmas so almost all the traditional plants and flowers had already been sold. I thought they were going to trash the remaining ones so I bought one home. It was a small branch of ficus, planted in the way many flower shops do around holidays. Just a tiny branch, barely any roots in an extremely small pot with very dry soil. I tried to clean the small roots and put it into a vase filled with water and waited.
I didn’t have hopes it would survive, but at least I gave it a chance. Well, that ficus has now grown to this beautiful plant in the cover pic above and has one big root surrounded by smaller ones. It’s not easy to find a vase for it! And I have no intention to put it in soil again as it’s used to water now.
Until now I was only able to grow a cactus and make it bloom, so even water propagation has proven challenging, but I couldn’t be happier with the results! It’s also very practical since I live in apartments and keeping plants in soil would be messy – and I move around a lot, so I can bring my plants with me if they’re in water. I just soak a kitchen towel in water, wrap it around the roots and then wrap a little foil around it to keep my bag dry.