A Bird of Paradise flower yields its beautiful blossoms more quickly if reproduced by division rather than by seed. To propagate a Bird of Paradise plant by division you need a knife, rooting hormone, a pot, potting mixture and fertilizer.
- Divide the plant
Divide Bird of Paradise plants in spring. Remove the plant from its pot to expose the thick, fleshy roots. Using a clean, sharp knife, cut off one or more sections of root that include fans of the plant. Wash the roots, and trim off any dead leaves or damaged roots. Dust the cuts on the roots with a rooting hormone.
- Re-pot the divisions
Put each division is a small, sterile pot with high-quality commercial potting soil. Before watering the new divisions, allow the cuts to heal for 2 or 3 days. Afterwards, water the plants once a week during spring and summer and once every two weeks in fall and winter. Give them some all-purpose fertilizer every few weeks during the growing season.
- Encourage blossoms
To encourage blooming, give Bird of Paradise plants several hours of direct sunlight a day. Be sure the soil drains well. Do not re-pot them too often, as they bloom better if they are pot-bound. Dividing or re-potting the plants delays flowering. Plants reproduced by seed take 3 to 5 years to mature, while plants reproduced by division yield blossoms after only 1 or 2 years.