Can Alocasia Grow In Water? [Tips + Pros & Cons]

Alocasias are natives of the tropical and sub-tropical regions of Asia and Australia. They are loved for their large, beautiful leaves. Though these plants thrive in soil, many plant owners are wondering “Can Alocasia grow in water?”

Continue reading to find out whether you can grow Alocasia in water and the benefits and disadvantages of doing so.

can alocasia grow in water

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Can Alocasia Grow In Water?

Yes, Alocasia can grow in water. In fact, growing Alocasia in water is the easiest way to propagate and display your plant without having to deal with messy soil.

Unlike many other houseplants, Alocasia plants grow from rhizomes, making them not suitable for propagation through cuttings. These plants grow in clumps, so you may notice multiple clumps when removing them from their pots. A healthy Alocasia plant will also occasionally produce offsets, which are tiny copies of the adult plant that can be easily removed and grown in water.

How To Grow Alocasia In Water

If you want to grow Alocasia in water, you must remove the plant from the pot first. You cannot take a leaf or stem cutting from Alocasia, so you must either place the plant in water or separate the baby plants.

When the Alocasia has been removed from the pot, remove the soil, loosen the roots, and shake them to get rid of any soil left behind. Afterward, clean the roots thoroughly in running water to avoid dirt sticking to them. If the soil remains stuck to the roots, soak them in water for a short period of time until the soil is loose and easy to remove. Remove any dead or decaying roots and yellowing or dead leaves.

Using a pair of sterilized pruning shears, separate the baby plants from the main plant, being careful not to damage them. If you are planning to grow the entire plant in water, you can skip this step.

When the plant has been removed from its pot or the baby plants have been separated, place it into a water-filled container or glass jar. You must make sure your plant is completely immersed and not coming out. Use only distilled or filtered water. Tap water with chlorine is harmful to your plant.

propagating alocasia in water

How To Care For Alocasia In Water

If you take care of and fulfill the plant’s requirements, the Alocasia will flourish in water. Let us examine the tips that can help you grow the Alocasia in water.


Make sure the plant receives enough indirect light. Avoid keeping it in direct sunlight for too long. You can also place it near a window so it can enjoy some morning sunlight.


You should consider water quality when growing Alocasia in water because regular tap water is filled with impurities and harmful chemicals. Water that contains impurities and harmful chemicals is not beneficial to your plants.

As rainwater has no harmful chemicals and a lot of essential nutrients, it is the best choice. Filtered water, however, is the next best option since it is not always possible to collect and store rainwater. For water that is not purified, fill a container with water and let it sit for 24 hours to remove all impurities before using.

When growing Alocasia in water, you need to change the water frequently whenever you see it getting dirty. If you don’t do this regularly, stagnant water can become a breeding ground for germs and insects, killing your plants and affecting the air in your home. You should change the water every 2-3 days as stagnant dirty water can also attract algae.


Water doesn’t provide enough nutrients for the plant, so fertilization is crucial. You should fertilize the plant every 3-4 weeks in the growing season with a balanced liquid fertilizer. Add a drop of 20:20:20 NPK liquid fertilizer when changing the water. During the winter months, when Alocasia is dormant, don’t fertilize it.


As tropical plants, Alocasias do best in warm temperatures between 65 and 85°F. Avoid exposure to cold drafts and sudden changes in temperature. Alocasias become dormant in the winter if they are exposed to cold temperatures, so bring them indoors.


Originally from tropical regions, Alocasia is a humidity-loving plant that flourishes in a humid environment with 50% to 60% humidity levels. When they grow in water, their needs for humidity are usually met. However, if your home’s air is dry, you can also use a humidifier.

Transferring to Soil

Alocasias can grow well in water in the right conditions, so you don’t have to worry about transferring them to soil if they are doing well in water.

Growing Alocasia In Water: Pros & Cons

growing alocasia in water

Advantages of Growing Alocasia in Water

1. Improved Nutrient Absorption

Because the roots of this plant are exposed, nutrients and oxygen get delivered directly to them. This eliminates the need for the plant to search for nutrients in the soil, which means that it is better able to concentrate on growing instead of spreading its roots.

2. Reduced Pest Problems

Although growing in water does not guarantee that it is totally pest-free, the chances decrease drastically since most pests live in the soil.

3. Clean Growing Environment 

Keeping the plant clean in water is easier since you don’t have to deal with mess and dirt.

4. Reduced Chances of Over/Underwatering

Since the plant doesn’t need to be watered separately, there’s less chance of it getting underwatered or root rot from overwatering.

5. Aesthetic Appeal

Plants growing in water add visual appeal to your indoor garden setup, and many people enjoy watching their Alocasia roots grow in water.

Disadvantages of Growing Alocasia in Water

1. Nutrient Inaccessibility

In soil, the plant receives a lot of minerals required for long-term growth. Water alone does not provide all the essential nutrients Alocasia needs. You need to use a balanced liquid fertilizer that will give extra nutrients to the plant.

2. Inconvenience

Frequently changing the water is a hassle but necessary. Otherwise, algae and insects can grow in the container and produce an unpleasant odor.

3. Not Recommended for Long Term

Despite the plant’s ability to grow in water for a short period of time, it may suffer from nutrient deficiencies in water. Therefore, doing this for an extended period may not be advisable.

Will Alocasia Root In Water?

will alocasia root in water

Alocasia will usually root in water if the correct conditions are given. However, for a variety of reasons, your Alocasia might not root in water.

In a nutshell, here are the reasons:

  • There is too much foliage on the Alocasia. A plant with too much foliage will use its energy (whatever is left) to maintain its foliage instead of producing roots.
  • The plant was not in a healthy state when you put it in water. Plants that are already stressed will not grow roots.
  • Dormancy reduces Alocasia growth, so don’t be concerned if this is the case. This is why it is recommended to propagate Alocasia during the growing season.
  • The Alocasia is not receiving enough light. Avoid direct afternoon sun, but keep it bright indirect light and mild morning sun.
  • The water quality is poor. Make sure the Alocasia is put in filtered water.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you grow Alocasia hydroponically?

Due to their love of growing roots, Alocasias are one of the easiest plants to grow semi-hydroponically. Many people have success growing their Alocasias in Lightweight Expanded Clay Aggregate (LECA).

Lightweight Expanded Clay Aggregates are lightweight, porous materials made from expanded clay particles. These aggregates are used in horticulture and gardening applications where lightweight and high porosity are required. Because of their low density, they are ideal for growing plants in containers.

can you grow Alocasia hydroponically

Can I grow an Alocasia bulb in water?

Yes, you can grow Alocasia bulbs in water. It is one of the simplest and most commonly used methods. To do so, place the bulbs inside a transparent jar or food container, making sure they are not overcrowded. Fill the container with clean water until only half of the bulbs are submerged. The bulbs should have access to both air and water.

Cover the container with a lid and place it in a bright, indirect-lit room that is warm. For one hour each day, remove the lid to give the bulbs some breathing space. Replace the water every week with fresh, clean water.

Eventually, you will see thin white roots emerging from your bulb within a month. Keep the bulbs in water for a little longer until they also sprout leaves. If you want the baby plant to grow well, you should now transfer it to potting soil or LECA.

can I grow an Alocasia bulb in water

How do you plant Alocasia in water?

You can plant Alocasia in water by removing any excess soil, and all rotten roots as well. Put it in a water-filled container or glass jar. Don’t put it in direct sunlight, but give it plenty of indirect light. Replace the water every 2-3 days.

Do Alocasia like wet soil?

Generally, Alocasias grow best in moist and wet environments, such as the rainforests in Brazil. Alocasia plants require regular watering to keep the soil evenly moist. However, they don’t like overly wet soil. The mix should never become sodden after watering.

Do Alocasia like being misted?

In order to maintain a humid environment for your Alocasia plants, mist often. Alocasia plants do not require regular misting, but they will appreciate it if you do. However, misting at night is especially dangerous because the cooler temperatures and wet leaves at night can be particularly conducive to disease outbreaks.

Can Alocasia leaves get wet?

Avoid getting the leaves too wet when misting Alocasia leaves, as sitting water can damage the leaves and weigh down the stems. In addition, it is also important to consider the airflow around your Alocasia plant. If the water on the leaves can evaporate quickly, it will not be a problem to get them wet.

Can an Alocasia live in water?

You can keep an Alocasia alive in water by giving it clean water, bright light and balanced fertilizer. However, you should not let it sit in stagnant water. Instead, you should change the water every couple of days.

Why is my Alocasia not growing roots in water?

Your Alocasia may not root in water for a variety of reasons. It is possible, for example, that the Alocasia plant has too much foliage, was not in good health when it was placed in water, is in dormancy, doesn’t receive enough light, or has poor water quality.