How to Identify Plant Leaf Nodes

Plant leaf nodes are small bumps or swelling where new leaves or stems emerge from a plant. These are the sites where new growth occurs. Knowing how to identify them, will easily enable you to Propagate Your Plants , and also help you with other tricks, such as helping your plant branch.


There are 3 common types of leaf nodes, which depend on the type of plant in question:

A) Plants that have a Swelling or Raised Bump 

Heart Leaf Philodendron

These are not only some of the easiest care plants around, but finding and identifying their nodes is just a simple. This is often due to the fact that you can see a few roots (often dried up) sprouting from these nodes.

   Heart Leaf Philodendron Leaf Node Root Node

Hoya Varieties

Another super plant with easily recognisable leaf nodes are Hoyas. Though the best part about Hoyas is that you'll spot roots right down the internode, allowing you to simply root the whole stem.

   Hoya root node leaf node Hoya cutting Wax plant

Delicious Monster

It can be a bit tricky to spot a node on a Delicious Monster when they are relatively young. However, as they mature, you will notice lovely long Aerial roots growing from these points, making this the perfect time and place to Propagate. 

   Delicious Monster root node

B) Scarring where a leaf has dropped off

Both Fiddle Leaf Figs and Baby Rubber Plants have a slightly different looking Leaf node, making spotting them quite easy when you know what to look for. These points (especially on Fiddle Leaf Figs and their relatives) will often have a little nubbin that shows you where the new leaves will emerge. So, always take your cutting under the node to ensure success.

Fiddle Leaf Fig

   Ficus tree leaf scarring ficus root node ficus leaf node

Baby Rubber Plant 

  Peperomia leaf node baby rubber plant root node  Peperomia leaf node Baby Rubber plant root node

C) Plants with Hollow Stems will have Solid Sections

Parallel Peperomia

Identifying nodes on hollow stemmed plants can be on the harder side. Knowing if a stem is hollow requires it to be cut open, or gently being pressed to see if it gives way. Both of these techniques can damage the stem. Though, as with all leaf nodes, you will notice points below the leaf that are slightly raised, and much firmer than the rest of the hollow stem. These are the nodes!

    Parallel Peperomia leaf node peperomia root node


Check out our Blog Post on Propagating Plants to learn more about using leaf nodes to multiply your plants.

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