How to Propagate and Care for a Moses in the Cradle Plant

After the flowers die, the “boats” on my Moses in the Cradle plant look like they have seeds. Can you start new plants from the boats? And how would you do that? The plant is quite large and I would like to propagate it.

H Jenni,

A Moses in the Cradle plant is best propagated by Plant Division or Stem Cuttings.

Propagating a Moses in the Cradle plant by Plant Division

Remove the plant from the pot and gently separate the root ball into sections, never use a sharp instrument to cut the root ball apart. Plant the sections in small containers that are a few inches larger than the new root balls; be sure there are drip holes n the bottom of the pot. If possible, use the same soil mixture that was used for the original plant.  

Propagating a Moses in the Cradle Plant by Stem Cuttings

Use a sharp, clean scissors, razor blade, or knife to cut a 4”-6” piece  of stem from the end of a healthy stem just below a leaf node. A node is the small bump on the stem where a leaf joins the stem. Remove all of the leaves from the bottom 1/3 of the stem. Dip the cut end of the stem into a small amount of Rooting Hormone that contains a Fungicide. Try to remember which is the top of the cutting and which is the bottom of the cutting. Plant the stem cutting in a 4″pot (must have drip holes in the bottom) of moist, loose potting soil. Cover the pot with clear plastic to increase the humidity and help keep the soil moist. Check the soil every few days to be sure the soil is still moist. Tug on the newly planted cuttings after a few weeks, if there is resistance, roots have developed, the plastic can be removed, and the propagation was a success.

Seed Propagation

You can also propagate a Moses in the Cradle Boat plant by collecting the seeds from the spent flowers. Hold the flowers over a small pot of loose, moist soil and gently crush the flowers between your fingers so the seeds drop into the soil.

Purple and green Moses in the Cradle Plant
Moses in the Cradle Plant
Tradescantia spathacea)

Complete Care Guide

You can read all my care tips for a Moses in the Cradle plant in the Popular Houseplant Section of the website.