Q: I have a jade plant that is top heavy. Is there a way to replant some of this plant to start new plants or is there a seed on the plant?
A: Jade plants do have seeds but getting them to flower prior to forming seed is a chancy proposition. The best way to propagate them is to snap off individual leaves and insert them halfway into a clay saucer full of damp sand. Given plenty of bright light, tiny foliage will form at the base of each parent leaf within eight weeks. At that point the plant can be transplanted to a four inch clay pot filled with “cactus mix” potting soil.
You might be interested to learn that a jade plant develops into a large shrub or small tree in its native South Africa. It can grow to quite a large plant when kept in a greenhouse, where temperatures do not drop below 50 degrees. Once you have some small plants flourishing in April, cut back the overgrown top of your plant to a single trunk and a couple of side branches. Even though your jade plant will have few leaves at that point, place it outdoors in filtered sunshine. By the end of summer, new leaves and short stems will cover the scaffold branches and it will resemble its kin from Africa.
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