Rooting Plants in Water: The Easiest Way to Bring Greenery Indoors

Rooting Plants in Water
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If you enjoy bringing greenery into your home but don't have a green thumb or are simply too busy to be a plant parent, we've got an idea you're going to love. And even if you're a bona fide botanist, you're in the right place. Enter the simplest, most beautiful floral trend: rooting plants in water.

What is Rooting Plants in Water?

Rooting plants in water is a way of propagating new plants using only water. The low-maintenance method involves snipping a cutting at the base of a leaf and placing it in fresh spring water in a glass vase where it will then grow roots.

This is the easiest houseplant you'll ever have since it's impossible to kill, never has to be fed, and isn't overly sensitive to light. And aside from its low-maintenance essence, rooting plants in water is well-suited for pretty much any environment, from minimalist aesthetics to eclectic spaces. We'll show you how to succeed with this on-trend-yet-timeless approach to indoor plants.

How to Root Plants in Water
 MyDomaine / Grace Kim /

Pick Your Plant

Not all plants will respond well to indoor hydroponics, but there are still plenty of good options. Herbs (mint, oregano, basil, rosemary, lavender, and sage) grow fast in water and will even start to produce a new leaf every day. Some houseplants that work well are English ivy, philodendron, tradescantia, purple passion, coleus, and of course that old-is-new-again favorite: lucky bamboo. Finally, if you're looking to add more flowers to your home, root some begonias or impatiens in water. They'll even bloom during the winter!

Root Your Plant

Rooting in Water Vs. Soil
JH Interior Design

Once you've found your specimen or snipped a piece from a friend's garden, prepare it to grow roots. Cut just below a leaf at a point called the leaf node where the sections of the plant branch out. This is where most of the rooting hormone is within the plant, which will ensure growth. 

Just Add Water

Indoor Plants Low Light
Julia Robbs

The only tricky part is using the right water. The roots will be getting all their nutrients from the water, so you can't just use the tap. Bottled spring water or well water works best, due to the higher levels of minerals. Put your cutting in a clear glass jar or vase so the roots can get some sun.

Use a beaker or bottle-shaped vase so the cutting stays nicely in place.

That's it! You may need to change the water every few weeks or trim back the roots in a year, but until then, it's completely self-sustainable. Just sit back, relax, and watch your thumb turn a lovely shade of green.

Choose Your Vase to Get Started

West Elm Oversized Glass Vase $150
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This oversized floor vase is the ideal piece for anyone who likes to play with proportion and wants their greenery to take center stage. It strikes the perfect balance between blending in and making a statement wherever it is, from minimalist to maximalist spaces

Iittala Alvar Aalto purple vase
Iittala Alvar Aalto Vase $169 $135
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This pretty purple freeform vase is a Scandinavian design classic that looks lovely empty, though it'd be even more beautiful with some green and purple Wandering Jew vines trailing out of it. 

round vase with gold Rim
Jamali Garden 7-inch Ball Vase With Gold Rim $13
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You can't go wrong with a simple round glass vase for single blooms or rooting a leaf of Pilea peperomioides. This one takes things up a notch with a gold rim accent for a touch of glam. 

Jake Vase
Arteriors Home Jake Vase $355
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With a sophisticated champagne tint, this crystal prism-effect vase will accentuate the natural beauty of your root plants even more. And it adds a touch of Art Deco glam to your life.

Rogaska Crystallization 10-inch Vase
Rogaska Crystallization 10-inch Crystal Vase $180
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If you're on the lookout for a modern-classic crystal vase, here's our pick. And even better, it's pretty affordable considering that this piece made from fine-quality quartz minerals will cast rainbows if you set it in the sun.

Georg Jensen Cafu Vase M
Georg Jensen Cafu Vase M $132
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Opt for an inky hue for a moodier ambiance. Place on the mantle in the living room or a console table in the entryway for all to see. 

Double Wall Glass Vase
CB2 Double Wall Glass Vase $25
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Keep things simple with this double-wall glass vase. With two layers and a sleek silhouette, it's a beautiful way to display your root plants no matter the environment. 

ballard pink bud vas
Ballard Designs Melissa Bud Vase $8 - $16
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This mini pink vase is the perfect accent piece for a nook in a small space or a collection of florals. 

flat mini bud vase
CB2 Flat Mini Bud Vase $3
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This shallow little vessel will allow for an intriguing composition of florals every time. Get multiples for a well-balanced centerpiece. 

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