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From test tube to cuttings holder for plants


What is a cuttings holder?

You’ve probably seen the trend pass by. A test tube used as a small vase. Strange? No, actually not! Test tubes are originally used in the lab for various tests and investigations. And you’re actually going to do something similar!

Not onlyy in the lab, but at home at the kitchen table. It’s not an official research, but you can at least keep an eye on the roots of your cuttings.


  • Small plants
  • Test tubes with rack or wooden test tube holder
  • Scissors or knife
  • Water

What are the nicest plants for in a cuttings holder?

The nicest plants for the test tube? We find it extra nice to put different kinds of cuttings in the holder. Especially a hanging plant like the Lantern plant, in combination with the Alocasia Black Velvet and a Philodendron.

Suspended plants lend themselves extra well to the cutting system in test tubes. You can easily cut them off and hang them with a stem in the test tube.

Step-by-step plan from test tube to plant holder

Step 1: cuttings

Grab all your supplies. You start by properly disinfecting your scissors or knife. In this way you reduce the chance of bacteria spreading. After this you cut or trim the cutting diagonally off the houseplant. Cutting at an angle creates a larger wound, which gives an extra chance for new roots. This is best done under an aerial root or at least 15 cm under the leaf. Not all cuttings are the same. Keep this in mind!

Step 2: cleaning

How you started, you end the first step again. You clean the scissors and/or the knife again. After this you also remove all soil and goo from the roots of your cuttings. In a test tube all roots are clearly visible. The cleaner the roots the better! Earth can easily be washed away from the roots. After most of the soil has been removed you can carefully clean the roots with your fingers.

Step 3: end result

At this point you can fill the test tubes with water and put them in the wooden stand or rack. Are all the cuttings really as good as clean? Then they can be placed in the test tubes. That’s it! You probably weren’t busy for more than five minutes, but then you have a real eye-catcher. Besides cuttings it is also nice to put (dried) flowers in the test tubes.

Learn how to propagate? Watch the sample video!

Have you never propagated a houseplant before? Then take a look at our video about the cutting of the Monstera. One of the easiest houseplants to propagate. Also for you!

Play Video

“Remember to change the water in the test tubes regularly. It is best to do this on a weekly basis. Changing the water in the test tube prevents algae formation”.

Has algae already formed in the test tube? Then take the cutting out and clean the test tube thoroughly. You can do this with a handy tool for test tubes, but you can also easily do this with home garden and kitchen stuff.

How do you clean test tubes?

Step 1: Soak the test tube in hot water with a dash of green soap. You can easily leave this on for 24 hours.
Step 2: Then rinse the test tube well. It is important for your cutting that there are no remnants of green soap left behind in the test tube.
Step 3: Roll up a piece of kitchen paper as small as possible. So small, that it fits in the test tube. It is best to push the kitchen paper into the test tube with a rotating movement. If all goes well you will now see green pieces of algae on the kitchen paper.
Step 4: Repeat step 3 as many times as necessary. It is possible that not all the algae has been removed with a kitchen paper.
Step 5: Rinse the test tube again to flush away any remaining algae.
Step 6: Test tube clean? Then you can refill it with water and your cutting.

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