Indoor Garden

Let children observe the magic of a how a cutting grows its roots – a quick way to propagate plants for free and a valuable lesson in appreciating just how awesome nature really is.

You will need

  • A sterilised medium-sized glass bottle
  • Cuttings from healthy plants that will root easily without nurserybought rooting hormones. Try species such as African violet, geranium, mint, wandering Jew, impatiens, philodendron and spekboom (indigenous to South Africa).


  • Help your kids cut a 3 to 6-inch section of stem from a healthylooking plant by making a clean, angled snip above a leaf node.
  • Let them remove leaves from the bottom third or half of the cutting so you are left with a bare stalk and a few leaves on the top section.
  • Put the cutting in the bottle of water, submerging only the leafless stem.
  • Place the bottle in a place that gets partial sunlight and that is neither too hot or cold.
  • Once the roots are several inches long the cutting is ready to transplant into soil.


  • Keep the water topped up and replace once a week or sooner if it becomes cloudy.
  • Let the kids feel like mini scientists by displaying their cuttings in test tube vases or beakers.
  • Upcycled chutney, ketchup and glass soda bottles filled with cuttings, displayed en masse from a metal frame, will create an eye-catching decorative element.
The Gardener