My Epipremnum pinnatum plants are growing wonderfully. Am I biased? A bit hahah.
Last year in September, I shared in a separate blog post about how my husband and I found a huge mother plant of E. pinnatum in one of our walks. I did thought that this evergreen vine was Monstera deliciosa at first. But after lots of interaction with fellow plant lovers, I learned that the correct plant name is Epipremnum pinnatum, commonly called as “Dragon Tail” in English, “Tibatib” in Tagalog, and “Balikupkop” in Cebuano.
This plant is native to the Philippines and other parts of Southeast Asia, Polynesia, Australia.The E.P. grows in abundance especially in mountainous and upland barangays. These plants are also present in urban areas and cities, just like where I found mine, but it’s a bit rare though in the lowlands.
How to Plant Epipremnum Pinnatum Cuttings
This is how I planted my dragon tail cuttings last year 2019.
I got a long stem cutting taken from the mother plant of Ma’am Net. This long stem was divided into 4 parts, which I labeled Plant A, B, C, and D. 3 of the cuttings were directly planted in soil, while one was placed in a clear glass with water.
Of the 4 cuttings, 3 survived, all those that were planted in soil. I used regular garden soil, not mix with anything.
My Epipremnum pinnatum cutting placed in water died eventually. But It was my fault. I let the plant stay in water too long, it was under direct light, and sometimes I forgot to replenish the evaporated water. Plus, I should really have taken the plant off the water and plant it in soil as soon as I saw growing leaves and roots. Lesson learned.
Timeline of Growing Epipremnum pinnatum
I am sharing how my E.P. looked in various times, tracking its growth. This was the first time I tried growing pinnatum from cuttings. Again, I did this last year.
Day 1 September 26, 2019 – The day I got my cutting of Epipremnum Pinnatum.
Day 2 September 27, 2019 – The cutting was divided into 4. Putting the cuttings in soil and water.
Day 3 September 28, 2019 – I took pictures of my plants A, B, C, D.
Day 29 October 24, 2019 – A leaf bud begin to sprout. The old leaves yellowed and eventually fell off the stem after several more days.
Day 72 December 7, 2019 – There are now 3 to 4 leaves on each plant.
Day 263 June 15, 2020 – Almost 9 months of taking care of my Epipremnum pinnatum, it became lush and tall. The plant is outgrowing its moss pole.
Notice that the leaves on the bottom portion of the plant looks different from the ones on top. The bottom ones are smaller, some even does not have any splits or fenestration on the leaves. Then as the plant grows more mature, there are more and more splittings on the leaves and they are becoming bigger and bigger.
I have a Plant Box by Penfires Youtube video about my Epipremnum pinnatum in case you want to see. I focused on Plant D in the video but I also showed Plant A and Plant B.
Epipremnum pinnatum or Dragon Tail is not a Monstera. This plant is related more to pothos, than it is to Monstera. Pothos is under “Epipremnum” genus just like the pinnatum.
How to Take Care of Epipremnum Pinnatum
These tips are from my personal experience. I recommend that you also search for more info about the dragon tail plant.
- If you get cuttings, make sure each cutting has at least 2 nodes. It’s best if you can get a cutting with 3 or 4 nodes.
- This plant is naturally found in dense forest, enveloping huge trees; it likes shade.
- Plant A which is on the left side of the garage, gets bright indirect light during morning. I’ve chopped up this growing dragon tail plant just last June and gave away most of the cuttings. I did this because I wanted to place giant golden pothos where it’s located.
- Plant B which is on the right side of the garage, it receives harsh, direct afternoon light. It is growing okay although there are 2 leaves with burnt areas.
- Plant D is placed indoor, with medium light. The one pictured above is Plant D, I focused on tracking it.
Please check my Youtube Video on dragon tail E.P., if you want to see Plant A and Plant B.
3. On watering – I normally water if the top soil is dry or if I see drooping leaves. After watering, the drooping leaves revives fast and gets upright.
*Some enthusiasts recommend to keep the dragon tail soil moist and to mist the leaves everyday. I don’t do this.
4. I planted the cuttings without any fertilizer. I think if fertilizer is use the growth will become faster.
5. In its natural state, this plant is a climber, it’s a vine. So having a pole to climb on is best for the Epipremnum pinnatum. You will get bigger leaves with lots of splits if this plant is climbing onto something.
If you will not give it a pole to climb on and just let it hang, the plant will still grow but the leaves tend to be smaller and then there will come a time (maybe it will take years) that the plant leaves will grow with more and more space in between them and then will stop producing new leaves.
6. If you are rooting the plant in water, it’s best to used filtered or ground water. Or get water from the faucet, let it sit at least for 1 or 2 days so the water’s chlorine content will lessen thru evaporation.
- My new 2020 cuttings were first placed in ground water before I transferred them to soil. All 6 cuttings via water propagation were successful. Check this 2020 Tibatib Propagation video wherein I tracked the cuttings progress until they developed new leaves. There is a surprising result from one of the cuttings!!!
7. Have lots of patience. This plant slowly grows but once it is stable, I noticed that new leaf production is now faster.
8. If ever your dragon tail has grown taller than its pole, what you can do is extend the pole, or let the plant hang, or snip-off the newer leaves (with nodes) so you’ll have new cuttings for another plant propagation.
Cutting Up Plant A – Growing New Plant from A Cutting of A Cutting
Plant A was allowed to climb on the moss pole on the left side of the garage. Again, I’ve divided this plant last June 2020 and most of the cuttings I’ve given away to other plantita. I kept 2 cuttings and is now tracking their progress.
I named the cuttings remaining with me Plant A1 and Plant A2, each one comes with 3 nodes.
I wonder if you can categorize this new Epipremum pinnatum as ‘3rd generation’?
- First generation – Mother plant of Ma’am Net.
- Second generation – Plant A, a cutting from the mother plant of Ma’am Net.
- Third generation – Plant A1 and Plant A2, cuttings from Plant A.
Anyhow, 3rd gen or not, the cuttings are growing beautifully.
So what did I do differently this time from what I did with my dragon tail cuttings back in 2019?
Day 1 June 22, 2020 – First day, I divided Plant A, got the cuttings, and placed each cutting in a vase half-filled with ground water.
- My 2019 successful cuttings were placed on soil right away.
Day 16 July 7, 2020 – The cuttings has new roots, I now transferred each rooted cutting in a potting mix of garden soil and vermicast with 50-50 ratio.
Day 18 July 9, 2020 – There is now a leaf bud on Plant A1. The old leaves have dried-up and about to fell-off the plant.
Day 27 July 18, 2020 – Plant A1 with 2 new leaf buds (all old leaves died).
Plant A2 with 1 leaf bud (the old leaves still has green in them).
Day 29 July 20, 2020 – 2 days shy of 1 month, a new leaf has fully emerge on Plant A1.
The unfurling of a new left is faster with my dragon tail propagation this 2020 versus the one I did in 2019. I think the nutrient-rich vermicast in my potting mix help in the plant’s faster growth.
I will still be tracking progress of Plant A1 and A2 and will upload a new video once these plants reach 6 months. It’ll be interesting to see how the plant will look like then.
Check here for the 2020 TIBATIB Propagation – Plant Development VIDEO – surprising result in one of the cuttings. Yeyyyy!!!
For now, I need to find materials so I can make a new diy moss poles for my new Epipremnum pinnatums. 🙂
What’s your challenges in growing dragon tail plant?
Do share your best practices in growing this plant so we all can get more info and perspective. Thank you.
Hello, great story! My pinnatum from stem cuttings have droopy leaves. They were transferred to soil after the day i got them (they were soaked in water overnight) unfortunately, after a day in soil, its leaves seem weak. (meaning, they’re not sturdy enough to look stiff) The soil is very moist though. What shall I do?
I would appreciate a response on this. Thanks!
Cille Anne says
Hi Diego, based on my experience that is normal. The old leaves will droop, turns yellow, then brown and fell off. I just let them be, after about a month, leaf buds will start to sprout. I’m actually more excited when I see all the original leaves have died because I expect the new leaves will come out real soon.
I gave away 3 cuttings to friends and have been in constant follow-up with them on their plant’s progress. Their cuttings, also placed in water before transferring to soil, now have new leaves after all the original leaves died away.
*I don’t keep the soil moist. I water them only when I see the soil is dry and I keep the newly planted cutting under shade.
I know some plant-mates though wherein the original leaves on their cuttings didn’t all die, I suspect it’s because they planted long stem cuttings with more than 5 nodes.
On your plant, don’t worry much about the drooping leaves, but let me say that I am really againts super moist soil especially that the plant is not established yet.
Hope there will be good news in a month for your pinnatum plant!
Hello, thank you for your very informative reply. I’ll take note on this. Again, great article and wish you well on you blog and plants. God bless and stay safe!
Hello. I bought 3 pots of dragon tail last 2-Sep-20. I repotted them 2 days after, 4-Sep since all were rooted as per seller. I noticed before repotting, on 3-Sep, 1/4 of one leaf has slightly turned yellow. And on 5-Sep I cut off the yellow leaf. The following day, 6-Sep, the other leaf from the same pot is showing the same symptom. And today 7-Sep the whole leaf has turned yellow. I am worried that all leaves from this pot will fall off as I can see a 3rd leaf starting to turn yellow. The other 2 pots have no yellow leaves and are all fine. FYI, the plant’s soil was extremely moist when i first got it and did not water until I repotted them. Initially, all 3 plants were located in the least indirect light of our unit. But after repotting, i have moved them with a medium- bright indirect light. I have not yet watered them since repotting. Appreciate your soonest response on what to do. Thank you.
Cille Anne says
It could be that the seller planted that particular cutting few days or weeks before you bought it and it was timing that the yellowing of the leaves is happening na. If this is the case, I would say don’t worry much. Based on my experiences the leaves of EP cuttings (8 out of 10) all turned yellow then fell-off naturally, it was also around the same time that the first leaf bud emerges. Although, I did not cut-out or pluck-out the yellowing leaves.
Can you check this particular pot if you can see emerging leaf bud? If you can’t see any, keep that pot under indirect light for now and don’t touch/move it much. Epipremnum pinnatums are a tough lot so I think there is a high chance that yours will survive and thrive.
*Check the soil on all your pots, if it’s dry na, please water it.
In case you want to see the actual sample of yellowing of leaves, you can watch this E.P. propagations I’ve made this June 2020 – https://youtu.be/d2VW3KoLcVA
Good afternoon po. Nagkakaroon po ng brown scratches like na lines po yung dahon ng dragon tail ko. What seems to be the problem po kaya?
Cille Anne says
Hi Lerry, I am not really sure. Is that a newly planted cutting? Sometimes pag newly planted, nag a-adjust yung plant sa new environs nya then minsan may effect sa leaves. If matagal na sya naka-plant at hindi naman under direct sun, baka sa medium. Check mo din if maganda yung drainage ng pot, kasi sometimes yun ang culprit yung hindi maayos pag-drain ng water.
Medyo nangangapa pa talaga tayo sa Epipremnum pinnatum kasi lately lang tagala eto naging popular as house plant dito sa Pilipinas. A lot more to learn para sa atin lahat.
I received a dragon’s tail that has 3 matured leaves and 2 small leaves that stem from established roots. I had it in water for 2 weeks, but I noticed the baby leaf keeps on having black edges while the matured leaves don’t. I decided to plant the whole thing in loam soil and I observed the matured leaves started to get black tips. I’m worried and I’m thinking about transferring it to garden soil. Any advice?
I also read in FB that I shouldn’t plant it too deep, only a few inches below the soil. My problem is the part with roots is around 8inches. Should I cut it?
I want to send pictures as reference.
Thank you in advance.
Cille Anne says
Hi Gem, did you use filtered water or tap water that’s been stored for at least 2 days before moving your dragon tail into it? If not, if chlorinated water baka isa yun sa dahilan sa black edges. Another thing that may cause that is a new cutting/newly planted na expose to direct sun.
Can I see the pics? Can you send it on https://www.facebook.com/penfires
>>My problem is the part with roots is around 8inches. Should I cut it?
Does it still have leaves sa mga nodes? I assumed since 8 inches to root portion yung plant, there would be around 3 to 5 nodes? If yes, okay lang yan. Itanim mo under sa soil ang 1 node. Max of 2 nodes ang ibaon mo.
Hi, love your article on Dragon Tail!
Im currently growing mine from cuttings. There is a new stem growing out of the major stem of my cutting. It seem to be growing out and away from the pole that I made for them to climb. What should i do to train the vines to climb the moss pole?
Cille Anne says
Hi Calvin, you can tie the stem to the pole habang bago palang sya. That’s what I usually do pag hindi dumikit agad sa pole.
Thank you for your experience with your dragon tail. I recently took a cutting (around 10cm) from my dragon tail stem and put it in water around 2 months ago. It has grown a new leaf yet no roots have actually sprouted from the stem in water. Am i doing something wrong?
Cille Anne says
Hi Iris, I haven’t experienced that with E. pinnatum or with any other plant propagations, usually about 3 to 4 weeks, the white-colored roots starts to grow.
*I supposed the plant is still getting nutrients because there is a new leaf. Hope real soon you can see new roots.
Hi, will trimming the top parts of the plant encourage growth in other nodes? Have you tried?
Cille Anne says
Hi Joy, when I cut the top portions of my plants, what I observed is that a new branch/stem sprouts from the node directly below the cut. I haven’t seen activity on the other nodes, other than the one closest to the cut.
*I’ll update this post with pic from my top cuttings of Philodendron erubescence “Gold” aka Philo Lemon Lime and the N’joy pothos for samples.
Thanks for sharing your expertise and experience. I bought dragon tail from a store in a small pot. I kept it in for a few months. It gave quite a few new leaves as the tail grew. But currently the issue I have is: the tail is growing, nodes are showing but no new leaves are coming.
Just a day or so ago I re-potted it into a bigger pot (20cm pot). I still have to put in a stake for it to climb on to.
Why did it stop producing new leaves?
Cille Anne says
Hi Shalom, it may be the end of line for that particular branch/stem. My very first dragon tail outgrew it’s pole, but it continue to grow split-leaves after letting it just hang. However, after several months more, like yours, the branch grew longer with nodes but no leaf. The good thing is that right now a new branch sprouted up from a different node near the top of the moss pole, it is where the new leaves are coming out now.
What you can try to do with your plant is to let the ‘no leaves nodes’ to climb onto something, maybe it will recover. Or observe if there are activities on the other nodes.
I hope your plant will once again give new leaves.
Bea Tan says
Hi! I’ve been following your blog and used your advice in propagating my Dragon Tail plant. Although the propagation is successful, I’ve been wondering why the new leaves are very small with no splits on them. Also, when I do not put any fertilizer, they would form into a vine without any leaf growth. May I know how I may remedy this? Should I repot them to a bigger pot?
Also, is it possible to propagate new vine growth even though it doesn’t have any leaves? Thanks a lot for this! 🙂
Cille Anne says
Hi Bea, there is a chance that a newly propagated dragon tail will not have splits in them. Example: I have 4 propagations from the same mother plant, propagated the same day and way. Out of the 4, 3 grew the normal split leaves but 1 of them has ‘unbroken’ leaves – https://youtu.be/d2VW3KoLcVA
The best way to up the chances of the EP to grow split leaves is to have it climb a pole, mimicking it’s natural habitat. The same way with a vine with no leaves on its nodes, let it climb, there is a chance that new leaves will grow on future nodes.
>>> Also, is it possible to propagate new vine growth even though it doesn’t have any leaves?
I don’t know the answer to this as I have not attempted this yet.
Hope your dragon tail will thrive and its leaves starts to splits!
Hi, I purchased a Dragon Tail plant last year and absolutely love it’s lushness. Didn’t realise the plant was a climber/trailer when I bought it. I don’t have space for it to grow up a pole or hang down. The stems are really long. Am I able to cut off the trailing stems (or at least the lengths that have no leaves) and just keep it to a bushy plant with a little bit of trailing?
Cille Anne says
Hi Kaye, you can cut off the trailing stem and place it in water, there is a chance that it’ll thrive, while at the same time your main dragon tail will still be okay.
Per my experience on the dragon tail that was on my youtube video, when it outgrew it’s moss pole it continued to give beautiful leaves, until a couple of months more and I noticed that the stem continued to grow with nodes but no leaves then node with small leaf then again nodes with no leaf. I just let it be. After a few more weeks, I saw a new branch stemmed from an old node. Then another couple of weeks there grew a new branch on another old node.
My suggestion would be since you have limited space, you can gather and tie-up the trailing stem, give your plant a month or two, then check if there are new branches growing on older nodes before you cut the long stem with no leaves. I hope there will be new branching on your dragon tail so it will become lusher and more compact.
Wendel Galvez says
Hi ! Nakababad rin po ba yung nodes niyo sa tubig during water propagation?
Cille Anne says
Hi Wendel, yes, pati nodes submerged.