How to Propagate String of Dolphins (Water or Soil Method)

Senecio peregrinus, sometimes known as “The String of Dolphins,” is a fascinating succulent plant with cascading vines and delightful leaves in the form of dolphins. Plant lovers and collectors prize it for its distinctive and quirky look. Whether you are an expert gardener or a novice, propagating the String of Dolphins may be a lovely way to add to your collection or show off this plant’s beauty to others. We will discuss the two efficient methods of propagation in this blog post: water and soil. You will be able to effectively propagate and nurture new String of Dolphins plants using these methods.

When to Propagate String of Dolphins

String of Dolphins plants can be propagated throughout the year, but the best time to propagate them is during their active growing period. The plant is ready to develop new growth during this time, which typically happens in the spring or early summer. The plant is more likely to effectively root and swiftly establish itself during this period.

Both soil and water methods are available for propagating String of Dolphins. Here is a detailed instruction for both of these methods of spreading String of Dolphins:

How to Propagate String of Dolphins in Soil

To propagate String of Dolphins in soil, follow these step-by-step instructions:

  1. Prepare the cutting: Using clean, sharp scissors or pruning shears, cut a 3 to 5-inch strand from a mature, healthy String of Dolphins plant. Just below a node, which is the place where leaves protrude from the stem, make the incision. Give the cutting approximately two days to dry. When planted in soil, a callus that forms as a result of this drying process keeps the cut end from decomposing.
  2. Prepare the soil: String of Dolphins love a soil that drains well, therefore it’s crucial to utilize a soil mixture that makes it simple for extra moisture to evaporate. A blend of ordinary potting soil, sand, and perlite, or cactus/succulent soil is a suggested soil mix. While still maintaining some moisture for the roots, this combination offers adequate drainage.
  3. Plant the cutting: Plant the cutting in a container with the prepared soil mixture once it has developed a callus. Place the cutting in the hole you have dug in the ground, burying at least one or two of the nodes in the soil. To make sure the cutting is firmly in place, lightly push the soil around it.
  4. Create the ideal environment by positioning the potted cutting in a spot that gets bright, indirect light. Avoid the sun’s direct rays since they might burn the leaves. Maintain an appropriate temperature range for best development. String of Dolphins plants flourish in temperatures between 65 and 75°F (18 and 24°C).
  5. Watering: Lightly water the freshly planted cutting, letting the soil dry between applications. In order to prevent root rot, it’s crucial to maintain a balance with watering. A basic rule of thumb is to water once a week, but you should alter the frequency depending on the humidity requirements of your plant and the surrounding environment.
  6. Fertilization: You may give the plant some fertilizer to boost its development in the spring when it starts to grow actively. Use a water-soluble fertilizer that is balanced and diluted to 50% of its original strength. Follow the fertilizer application instructions on the container.
  7. Care and upkeep: Regularly check the plant for symptoms of overwatering or underwatering. It is best to grow String of Dolphins plants underwater rather than overwater since they need somewhat drier conditions. To preserve the health and look of the plant, remove any yellow or wilted leaves. You may need to repot the plant into a bigger container as it gets bigger to fit its growth.

How to Propagate String of Dolphins in Water

Propagating String of Dolphins in water is a popular method and can be done using the following steps:

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  1. Take a good stem cutting from a mature String of Dolphins plant to prepare the cutting. Make sure the cutting includes multiple pairs of leaves and is between 4 and 6 inches long. Make a clean cut immediately below a node, which is the place where leaves emerge from the stem, using clean, sharp scissors or pruning shears.
  2. After removing the cutting, store it in a dry area for a few days to allow the cutting to callus. The cut end might develop a callus during this drying time, preventing it from decomposing when submerged in water.
  3. Fill a glass jar with water: Use distilled or filtered water to fill the container. Fluoride and chlorine, which are harsh chemicals, might harm a cutting’s ability to root. Tap water can include these substances. To create an environment that is conducive to root growth, it is important to utilize pure water.
  4. After the cutting has developed a callus, gently put it in the water-filled jar. Make sure the cut end is immersed in the water and the leaves are floating on top. If required, keep the cutting in place using a tiny clip or a bit of tape.
  5. Place the jar with the clipping in an area that gets bright, indirect light. Keep it out of direct sunshine, which may make it too hot and harm the cutting.
  6. replace the water frequently: To stop the formation of dangerous germs and guarantee that the cutting gets a new supply of oxygen and nutrients, replace the water in the jar every few days. Fill the jar back up with fresh water after rinsing it.
  7. Keep your patience and wait for the cutting’s roots to emerge. Due of the sluggish growth rate of String of Dolphins plants, this procedure may take one to three months. Make sure the water level is high enough to cover the cut end of the cutting by keeping an eye on it.
  8. Transfer to soil: After the cutting’s roots have grown to a minimum of 1-2 inches in length and are well-developed, you may gently move it to a soil mixture that drains well. Use a potting mix made especially for succulents, or combine perlite, sand, and cactus/succulent soil together. Bury the roots and bottom part of the stem while planting the cutting in soil.
  9. Give the freshly planted cutting the appropriate attention by placing it in an area with bright, indirect light. To avoid overwatering and root damage, softly water the soil and let it dry between applications. As the plant becomes more established, gradually increase the watering frequency.

How to Care For String of Dolphins after Propagation

Caring for a newly propagated String of Dolphins plant is crucial for its successful growth and establishment. Here are some steps to follow to ensure proper care after propagation:

  1. Following propagation, it’s crucial to allow a String of Dolphins plant some time to adapt to its new surroundings. Put the plant in a spot that receives plenty of direct light. Avoid putting it in direct sunlight right away since this might stress and sunburn the plant.
  2. Watering: String of Dolphins plants do best when let to dry out between waterings since they are drought-tolerant. Before watering again, let the soil completely dry out. It’s important to prevent too much moisture since overwatering may cause root rot and other problems. Deeply, but seldom, water the plant, making sure that any extra water drains out of the container.
  3. Soil that drains well: String of Dolphins plants need well-draining soil to avoid having their roots flooded with water. Use a succulent or cactus-specific soil blend that drains efficiently. To increase drainage, these mixtures often include components like perlite, pumice, or sand.
  4. Fertilization: You may fertilize your String of Dolphins plant throughout the growth season, which is normally spring and summer. Make use of a fertilizer that is water-soluble, balanced, and designed especially for cacti or succulents. For correct dilution and application frequency, heed the instructions on the fertilizer box.
  5. The ideal temperature range for String of Dolphins plants is between 60°F (15°C) to 80°F (27°C). Although they can withstand a little bit of a chill, exposure to frost or freezing temperatures might cause harm. Keep the humidity at a normal level since too much humidity might cause fungus problems.
  6. Pruning and grooming: Regular pruning and grooming may help keep your String of Dolphins plant’s form and beauty. Using clean, precise pruning shears or scissors, remove any dead or yellowing leaves. To promote branching and give the vines a fuller look, you may gently pinch back the tips of the vines.
  7. Pests and diseases: String of Dolphins plants often have a high level of resistance to both. However, typical succulent pests like mealybugs or scale insects might sometimes harm them. Check the plant often for any symptoms of disease or insect infestation, such as deformed or discolored leaves. If required, use the proper pesticide or fungicide to treat the damaged plant.
  8. Propagation: After your plant, the String of Dolphins, has grown and matured, you could think about propagating it again to add to your collection or to share with others. Following the same plant propagation methods as previously discussed, stem cuttings or leaf cuttings may be used to generate new plants.


How Long Does It Take To Propagate String of Dolphins?

The time it takes to propagate String of Dolphins plants can vary depending on the method used and the environmental conditions. Here’s a detailed explanation of the propagation process and the time it typically takes:

  • Cuttings from healthy plants should be between 3 and 5 inches long in order to grow String of Dolphins using cuttings in water. To avoid rotting, remove the leaves from one or more of the bottom nodes. Place the cutting, with the cut side immersed, in a glass jar filled with distilled or filtered water. Keep the jar in a window that faces the west for indirect light. Within a few weeks, roots should begin to form. Transfer the cutting to well-draining soil after the roots have taken hold.
  • Stem cuttings in soil: Stem cuttings in soil are another means of propagation. After obtaining a proper stem cutting, let it a few days to dry and develop a callus. After that, plant the cutting in a cactus- or succulent-specific soil mixture that drains properly. Wait for the roots to form, which typically takes a few weeks, and then thoroughly water the soil. To avoid root rot, it’s crucial to keep the soil at the right moisture level without overwatering.
  • Leaf cuttings: Although less frequent, you may also grow String of Dolphins from leaf cuttings. Make sure the leaves you choose are strong and came from an established plant. Give the leaf cuttings a few days to dry and develop calluses. After that, plant them in a soil mixture that drains properly, burying the cut end just a little bit. The leaf’s base should eventually sprout new roots and plantlets. Compared to stem cuttings, leaf propagation might take several weeks to a few months.

The propagation of String of Dolphins requires patience since it grows slowly. The following timetable is a general approximation; individual plants may differ. Temperature, humidity, and lighting conditions, among other things, may affect how quickly roots and shoots grow.

Can You Propagate String of Dolphins from Leaves?

Yes, you can propagate String of Dolphins plants from leaves. Leaf propagation is another method you can use to create new plants. Here’s a detailed explanation of how to propagate String of Dolphins from leaves:

  1. Select mature leaves from a String of Dolphins plant that is in good health. Verify that there are no injuries or diseases on the leaves.
  2. Remove the leaves by gently twisting or cutting them away from the plant stem. For greater success in propagation, it’s crucial to remove the leaves with a little bit of the stem still attached.
  3. After removing the leaves, place them aside in a dry, shady area to allow callus development. For a few days, don’t touch them so that calluses may develop at the cut ends. Callusing encourages the growth of roots and prevents decay.
  4. While the leaves are callusing, prepare a succulent-friendly well-draining soil mixture as the planting medium. Cactus or succulent soil combined with perlite or pumice works nicely as a mixture. Verify if the soil is permeable and loose.
  5. Once calluses have developed, gently push the cut ends of the leaves into the prepared soil mixture to begin planting. Plant them shallowly, burying just a tiny section of the stem, and leaving the leaf above the soil line.
  6. Create ideal circumstances by positioning the planted leaves in an area with direct light that is bright. Avoid the sun’s direct rays since they may scorch leaves. As succulents need somewhat greater humidity levels during propagation, keep the atmosphere warm and humid.
  7. Mist the leaves: Mist the leaves from time to time with water to keep them from drying out. Avoid overwatering as too much moisture might cause decay.
  8. Watch for new growth: Be patient and keep an eye out for any new development in the leaves during the next weeks. Starting from the base of the leaves, tiny plantlets, roots, or shoots may begin to appear.
  9. The young plantlets may be gently transferred into separate pots with well-draining soil after they have grown roots and are big enough to handle them.

It’s crucial to remember that leaf propagation might take longer than stem cuttings and could need more care to guarantee good rooted and development. With time and the right care, you may grow String of Dolphins from leaves and admire the beauty of these unusual succulents. Some leaves might not yield healthy plantlets.

Will String of Dolphins Grow Back?

Yes, the String of Dolphins plant has the ability to grow back if properly cared for. Here’s a comprehensive guide on how to grow and care for String of Dolphins plants:

  1. Soil and Watering: String of Dolphins plants need well-draining soil, much like the majority of succulents. To guarantee optimum drainage, use a cactus or succulent mix containing perlite or pumice. Because succulents are prone to root rot, avoid overwatering. Especially in the fall and winter when the plant need less water, let the soil dry up in between waterings.
  2. String of Dolphins plants appreciate direct, strong light for their lighting needs. Put them inside in a bright spot or next to a window with filtered sunlight. Avoid placing them in the sun’s direct rays, which might burn you and harm the leaves.
  3. The ideal temperature range for String of Dolphins plants is between 60°F (15°C) to 80°F (27°C). Although they can withstand slightly higher or lower temperatures, excessive temperatures might be harmful. Maintain appropriate humidity levels and steer clear of excessive wetness, which may cause fungus problems.
  4. Propagation: You may divide your String of Dolphins plant to produce new plants if it begins to wither or become lanky. The most popular technique of propagation is stem cuttings. Take stem cuttings with at least three nodes, calluse the cut ends, and use suitable propagation methods before planting them in soil or water.
  5. Pruning: Pruning may stimulate new growth and revitalize a String of Dolphins plant. Trim back extra growth if the plant begins to lose its form or gets overgrown by making precise cuts using sterilized pruning scissors. Pruning also promotes branching and maintains the plant’s compact shape.
  6. String of Dolphins plants don’t need a lot of fertilization. During the active growth season, usually in spring and summer, fertilize sparingly. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions or use a balanced, diluted succulent fertilizer at half strength. When plants are dormant in the winter, avoid fertilization.
  7. Repotting: String of Dolphins plants could exceed their pots as they swell with growth. Repotting is advised every two to three years or when the plant develops root-boundness. Use a little bigger pot filled with new, drained soil. Be cautious while handling the plant since its fragile stems and leaves are prone to breaking.
  8. Pests and diseases: String of Dolphins plants often have a high level of resistance to both. They sometimes do, however, attract mealybugs, aphids, or fungi like powdery mildew. Regularly check the plant for any indications of pests or illnesses and take the necessary precautions, such as treating pest infestations with insecticidal soap or neem oil or treating fungal infections with the proper fungicide.

How Do You Make Dolphin Strings Grow Faster?

To make Dolphin Strings (String of Dolphins plants) grow faster, there are several key factors to consider. Here’s a detailed guide on how to promote faster growth in Dolphin Strings:

  1. Dolphin Strings like direct, indirect light to grow in. Put them in a window that faces south so they can get enough of light. To prevent sunburn, it’s crucial to progressively adapt the plants in hotter areas. They will develop and produce richer foliage if there is enough light.
  2. Watering and soil: Dolphin Strings need well-draining soil. To improve drainage, add perlite or pumice among cactus or succulents. Do not overwater plants as this might cause root rot and impede development. Depending on the demands of the plant and the surrounding circumstances, vary the frequency of waterings so that the soil dries out fully between applications.
  3. Dolphin Strings benefit from repotting on occasion. They may end up pot-bound, which limits their ability to develop. Use a slightly bigger container and new, well-draining soil for repotting. Repotting enables the plant to develop new roots and offers more room for development, eventually accelerating growth.
  4. Pruning and propagation: Pruning Dolphin Strings on a regular basis helps promote new growth. To stimulate branching and fuller foliage, prune down lanky or straggly stems. To grow new plants, you may also propagate the cuttings. To guarantee effective plant propagation, use the right propagation methods, such as letting the cuttings calluse before putting them in soil or water.
  5. Fertilization: Dolphin Strings may develop more quickly when properly fertilized. Use a balanced, diluted fertilizer on succulents while they are actively growing, which is usually in the spring and summer. For application rates and frequency, go with the manufacturer’s instructions. Avoid overfertilizing, too, since this might result in nutritional imbalances or fertilizer burn.
  6. Dolphin Strings like conditions between 60°F (15°C) to 80°F (27°C) in terms of both temperature and humidity. Extreme temperature swings may hinder development, although they can withstand slightly higher or lower temperatures. In general, moderate humidity levels are ideal, but stay away from high humidity levels since they might encourage fungus growth.
  7. Training and support: You may influence the development pattern of Dolphin Strings to make them grow more quickly and fully. Rearrange the threads’ pattern gently, directing them to fill the pot or other appropriate area. This may encourage quicker development and provide the illusion of fullness.

I have written a full article on how to care string of dolphin plant , you may find a pruning method also. If you want to read you can do it.

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String of Dolphins Propagation
Meganesia, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

FAQs on How to Propagate String of Dolphins (Water or Soil Method):

Q1: Is it possible to use both water and soil methods to propagate String of Dolphins?

A: Yes, you can choose between the water method and the soil method for propagating String of Dolphins based on your personal preference and available resources.

Q2: How long does it take for String of Dolphins cuttings to root in water?

A: Typically, it takes around 2-4 weeks for String of Dolphins cuttings to develop roots when propagated in water. However, the exact timing may vary depending on factors such as environmental conditions and the health of the cuttings.

Q3: Can I propagate String of Dolphins using a single leaf cutting?

A: While it is possible to propagate String of Dolphins with a single leaf cutting, the success rate is generally higher when using a stem cutting that includes at least two or three leaves. The stem cutting provides more nutrients and energy for root development.

Q4: What type of soil mix should I use for soil propagation?

A: It is important to use a well-draining soil mix specifically formulated for succulents and cacti when propagating String of Dolphins in soil. A suitable mix can be created by combining equal parts of potting soil, perlite, and coarse sand to ensure proper drainage.

Q5: How often should I water the propagated String of Dolphins?

A: After the initial planting, it is crucial to allow the soil to completely dry out before watering again. Overwatering can lead to root rot, so it is best to follow a cautious watering routine and let the soil dry between waterings.

Q6: Can I place my propagated String of Dolphins in direct sunlight?

A: While String of Dolphins thrives in bright light, it is important to protect newly propagated plants from direct sunlight. Gradually acclimating them to brighter light conditions by placing them in an area with indirect or filtered sunlight will prevent sunburn and ensure their well-being.

Q7: How long does it take for propagated String of Dolphins to grow into mature plants?

A: The growth rate of propagated String of Dolphins can vary, but with proper care, they can develop into mature plants within several months to a year. Patience is key, along with providing the necessary conditions for healthy growth.

Q8: Can I propagate String of Dolphins throughout the year?

A: String of Dolphins can be propagated year-round, although they tend to root more easily during the spring and summer months when they are in active growth. However, with proper care and attention to environmental conditions, successful propagation can be achieved at any time of the year.

Q9: Should I use rooting hormone during the propagation process?

A: While not necessary, using a rooting hormone formulated for succulents can increase the chances of successful root development. It can help expedite the rooting process and improve the overall success rate of propagation.

Q10: Can I transplant my propagated String of Dolphins into larger pots once they have rooted?

A: Absolutely! Once the propagated cuttings have developed a healthy root system, they can be transplanted into larger pots to provide more room for growth. Ensure the new pot has proper drainage and use a suitable succulent soil mix to promote healthy root development.


For any plant enthusiast, starting the String of Dolphins propagation journey may be a very gratifying and thrilling experience. You may increase your collection and even share the delight of these alluring succulents with your friends and family by using the appropriate methods and practicing patience. You may choose the technique that best suits your tastes and available resources since both soil propagation and water propagation have significant benefits. To guarantee the success of your propagated plants’ development, remember to provide them the best care possible, including suitable lighting, soil that drains properly, and the right amount of moisture. Take some time to admire the beauties of nature and the beauty it has to offer as you immerse yourself in this propagation experience. Happy reproduction and have fun with the process!

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Amelia Clark

I'm Amelia Clark , a seasoned florist and gardening specialist with more than 15 years of practical expertise. Following the completion of my formal education, I dedicated myself to a flourishing career in floristry, acquiring extensive understanding of diverse flower species and their ideal cultivation requirements. Additionally, I possess exceptional skills as a writer and public speaker, having successfully published numerous works and delivered engaging presentations at various local garden clubs and conferences. Check our Social media Profiles: Facebook Page, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Youtube, Instagram Tumblr

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