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Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

Posted by SarahofLayton none (My Page) on
Sat, Sep 15, 12 at 3:37

At least I'm pretty sure it's a peace lily.

It looked like the roots had broken through the plastic pot at one point and somebody just slipped the plastic into a bigger terracotta pot. In the first picture you can really see how the roots were so wrapped up in themselves in that soil It was all noodley little dead roots everywhere when I started pulling things apart. Each leaf um...crown had about 1 or 2 healthy roots on them.

I wish I would have taken some photos as I was pulling things apart.

These are the little pieces I took for myself.
(this is an office plant) I took the saddest stubs hoping that I could revive them, because well, that's exciting! If I can' make these little nubs of sadness into blooming beautiful peace lilies why, I'll just tip over with happiness.

Here's the finished product of the big one.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

You can try to start out those little ones in sphagnum moss rather than soil, VERY important, don't use peat moss. Remove all the soil and replace with loose sphagnum. Then set the pot in your drainage container with about an inch of water. The water will wick up to the plant through the moss. Keep about an inch of water in there all the time. The loose moss will allow plenty of air to get to the roots and sphagnum is slightly anti-bacterial so it won't rot the roots. Sometimes the moss will start growing as well and you'll have the top of the pot a fresh green growth instead of just dark soil.


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

I grow spathiphyllum in all kinds of mixes- Pine fines. Bagged Potting soil. Larger Bark. Peat Moss.

Bagged potting mix works just fine even for the small ones.


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

Sarah. Yes, your plant is a Peace Lily.

Is each section rooted? If so, I imagine the roots are tiny. Is my assumption correct?

If roots are small, one mistake would be potting in too large container. Roots need to fill in the pot, with some space, of course, but a huge pot can cause problems. Over-watering, for one. And now with winter on its way.....

Hey Danny and Master Gardener... Toni


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

I agree with Toni, as stated, if the you have little roots to begin with, you definitely don't want to overpot your Peace Lily. Just from looking at yours, I'd opt for a smaller pot. If you decide to repot, the general size is no more than 2'' larger than the root ball (If I read your post correctly, there isn't really a root ball anymore as it sounds like you broke it up). With that being said, I'd hold the "crowns" together and find a pot that's no more than 2'' wider than the "crowns" held together. Hope that makes sense.

Planto


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

  • Posted by tapla z5b-6a mid-MI (My Page) on
    Sat, Sep 15, 12 at 16:42

Sarah - how large your pot can or should be doesn't depend on how large your plant is, it depends on how well your soil drains and how much air vs water it holds. When you grow in a soil comprised of primarily larger particles, like 1/8" and larger, your soil will hold very little to no perched water. Perched water is the water that stays in that soggy layer of soil at the bottom of the pot and won't drain. If you do away with that excess water, you provide a much healthier root environment, and the idea that you need to adjust the pot size to root volume or plant size goes out the window. With the right soil, you can start a tiny seed in a 55 gallon drum and grow a perfectly healthy plant.

You do, however, need to be careful about over-potting when using a water-retentive soil. THEN, it becomes a significant issue and it's accompanied by other issues as well.

There is a big picture and a narrow view that looks at only a part of the picture. The narrow view sometimes belongs with the big picture, but often needs qualifying in order to make it fit properly. Here, it fits, but it's probably more important to see how it fits than just that it fits.

Good luck - good growing!

Al


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

Hmm, I didn't think to just group all of them together. I should have done that! darn it. I'll try that with the sad little things that I have. The ones I have are pretty pitiful I think they're in a 4" pot now should I move them down to a 2"? That seems really small.

I've been researching Al's threads about the planting medium, I don't have any sphagnum moss but I did just recently buy a bag of orchid mix that says it's double screened fir bark and perlite, which sounds pretty promising.
I'm going to mix about 1 part that with 1 part of my standard bagged/perlite mix I use and try that with some of my cuttings I have rooting now (including the peace lily, I hope repotting it again doesn't shock it to death)

Al do you have any advice on that mix? Is that too much perlite? I don't have any access to lime right now and I'm looking to make a mix I can water about every other day, maybe 2 days between even. I love the science behind the grittier mixes and plan to try to switch everything out as I can.

As I'm getting further into researching the basics of container gardening I think a lot of my plants are over potted but what's the rule about how often you repot your plants? If I'm repotting everything after only 3 months are they all going to die of shock? I don't think I really understand shock, is there some sort of scientific explanation for that? I'm thinking some of the roots are mangled and so the plant expends energy to renew them, but how would that kill it if I'm putting it in better situation than it was in before? I have some questions about fertilizing too but I think I'll wait on that, each time I post about one thing it turns into questions about EVERYTHING.
Thanks so much Planto, Toni, Al...and everybody else. :D


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

Thanks Al! I think you submitted that while I was typing my many questions. That answers any concerns I had about having things over potted. Now I just need to know the answer to my questions about frequent repotting. My monstera is certainly over potted in a water retentive soil.


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

  • Posted by tapla z5b-6a mid-MI (My Page) on
    Sat, Sep 15, 12 at 19:40

Sometimes it better to ease back on the reins, gather yourself, think about things, and formulate a plan that is easy enough to not be frustrating to you, but still takes your plant's best interest into account as the primary focus. If you were asking me to draw up such a plan, it would include a bit of a wait before you start changing soils, except perhaps in an 'emergency' situation where root rot was making its presence known. Most plants will survive a winter just fine if they aren't too root bound, or you pot up the root bound individuals slightly to temporarily give them some room to stretch. Early summer, late spring if you're S of the Mason-Dixon line, is probably going to be the best time to repot and root prune. If you include that in your plan, it gives you the entire winter to keep learning, and to gather whatever ingredients you might need to make your soil(s).

If you have plants now that are in soils you think hold too much water, there are ways to deal with that excess water retention to minimize the impact on your plants. .... want the link?

Ok - critique my plan. ;-)

Al


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

Sarah

I joined GW in Feb. 2012. Started reading posts on couple of forums, and immediately wanted to re-pot all my plants.
Good that I wasn't able to get all the ingredients for 511 and/or gritty mix right away - time was not right to do full repot.

So I kept reading posts by Al, found them very educational and really interesting. There are posts by many other members here that give very good tips & post photos of their plants, many 'before' and 'after'. They are all very helpful.

Finally I repotted few plants at a 'right time', and the results are just great.
I am really glad that I followed the plan - got great soil mix, did full repot on time.
I have many more plants I didn't have chance (and enough ingredients for the soil mix) to repot at the same time, and I am eager to do it, but I understand now how important timing is. I am looking forward to spring to continue; will use fall/winter to get more ingredients-prepare soil mix and do some thinking and planning and reading.

I saved many posts to 'my clippings', and refer to them all the times.
Side benefit: I am getting more patient too..

Rina


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

So you're saying I should slow my roll?


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

Sarah

Just saying I am really glad that I followed what Al suggested...

Obviously in emergency situation some steps have to be taken immediately, but don't hesitate to ask questions - help is always available here, and one gets answer very quickly too.

I thought that I knew how to care for potted plants, but learned here so much in such a short time and am sure I'll learn much more yet.
I find help from Al and others here invaluable - just about instant, free, and comes from people who "been there - done that" and ones that have knowledge I think comes from lots of studying beside experience.

Rina


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

Thanks Rina,

So far I'm loving the info I'm getting here. I love that most of the advice is backed up with a scientific explanation. It helps me understand better what needs to be done and why. I just wish I would have started on GW earlier in the year. I have all of these plants that might not winter well here and a crazy determination to keep them.

Thanks for the help guys. Al I'm always happy to read more about the care of plants. Hit me with the link.
Thanks,
Sarah


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

  • Posted by tapla z5b-6a mid-MI (My Page) on
    Sun, Sep 16, 12 at 15:54

I don't know what all you've read and gained an understanding of yet, but an understanding of the principles and concept behind the thread in the container forum (about water movement in soils) is going to be a very important part of your understanding. It will just make things a lot easier across the board. It makes watering & fertilizing easier, and helps to considerably reduce the incidence of issues related to poor root health/function and low vitality. IOW, it helps eliminate most of the reasons people need this forum, which is to get their problems fixed. This even extends as far as reducing the incidence of insect infestation and diseases because a robust metabolism means a robust defense system.

If you DO fear you'll need help dealing with water retention between now and next summer this thread has lots of tips that can help you. Also, if it doesn't mention it in the thread, it would be a good idea to plan on flushing the soil in each of your plantings several times between now and summer if you're unable to water to the point where you're flushing the soil. This prevents a build-up of salts in your soil (eliminating that is especially important in winter) and a skewing of the ratio of nutrients that remain in the soil from fertilizing, which leads to the question, have we talked about fertilizers yet?

Thanks, Rina. I appreciate the kind comments!

Al


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

  • Posted by rina_ 6a Ont (My Page) on
    Sun, Sep 16, 12 at 15:59

Sarah

That's exactly the reason - I like to know "how" and even more so "why".
Al is very good at explaining, I find his posts quite easy to understand and I appreciate him sharing what took years to learn, with all of us.

I had to wait little over 3 mo, it was long wait for me...kept thinking -
patience, grasshopper...LOL

Rina


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

Hi guys,

Patience, I am learning, is not my strong suit.

Thanks for the link Al! I'll start reading, it seems reading is what I can do for my plants at this time of the year. I guess it's a good thing I like reading. Maybe I can crochet some plant cozies.
*sigh* thanks again guys
Sarah


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

  • Posted by tapla z5b-6a mid-MI (My Page) on
    Sun, Sep 16, 12 at 17:43

Knowledge is your friend. Learn as much as you can, then, let your practical experience justify (validate) what you learned. It might be difficult for someone SOO ready to "tear it up" (you) to sit still that long, but I promise you it will leave the millions relying on trial and error (essentially getting bit on the butt by their own mistakes) as their primary source of learning, standing in your slipstream. Plus, you can still have fun messing with your plants and plotting strategies in the interim.

Whoosch!! Who was that masked man? Why that was Lady Sarah of Layton ....

So - do you think you're in this plant business for the long haul, or do we have a bright but possibly fleeting shooting star?

Al


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

  • Posted by rina_ 6a Ont (My Page) on
    Sun, Sep 16, 12 at 19:08

Al

We were posting within minutes of each other, so didn't notice what you said.
I would like to see all newbies getting good results after getting help on this forum. It is so encouraging, seeing something to work.
As you know I really appreciate what you are doing here, and so many others that take time with Q&A's.
I hope that time will come soon when I can pay it forward...

Rina


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

  • Posted by tapla z5b-6a mid-MI (My Page) on
    Sun, Sep 16, 12 at 21:57

Aww - thanks, Rina. I have no doubt you'll be able to 'pay it forward' whenever you feel like you're ready to; and it's surprising how often that phrase actually comes up in my interactions with other GWers off forum. You'll learn that everyone isn't put together the same way, and you can't help everyone that comes here - no matter how much you might want to. For me, people like you and Sarah are lucky finds. You have open minds that are like sponges and are willing to make an effort (give me more!), so you guys can make soo much progress soo quickly. I love to help people learn to get more out of growing, so when I come across people like you two it's like instant gratification. When I see your posts and note how your understanding is growing, I just feel good - it makes me smile - not because I'm giving myself credit for it - but because I took an interest in you and I feel good that you're getting more out of your growing experience. I think we all know people we just want the best for, no matter if we have a part in it or not - it just makes us feel good because we feel they deserve it. When I come across someone on the forums with that open mind and a want to learn and improve their skills - it makes me feel like they deserve it, so I want to be their biggest cheerleader and do whatever I can to help - it's just how I'm built. The flip side of that is, who wants to try to push someone up a ladder when they don't want to climb? ;-)

Al


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

You guys are cute here, constantly praising each other. It's adorable.
Al,

I intend on doing the plant thing for the long haul, but only time will tell. It's certainly possible that I'll lose interest but I hope not. I want all the house plants I currently have to live through the winter (except the succulents, I have no hope for the succulents). I was hoping to occupy myself in the winter with other hobbies and then take my love of house plants and move outdoors next spring. So, like I said we'll see how it goes.

Do you have any other reading suggestions?
Thanks for your help.
Sarah


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

Sarah

LOL, Lady Sarah of Layton ....
We guys are not the only ones, there are many other members that are thankful to Al, and many others I am thankful to too - Josh, Mike, Jeff, Rosemarie, Howard, Tristan, Rian, Ryan, Mara, Karen, Toni - I can go on & on.

Happy growing Sarah.

Rina


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

  • Posted by tapla z5b-6a mid-MI (My Page) on
    Mon, Sep 17, 12 at 11:14

On the right day, this forum seems like something of a mutual admiration society; on the wrong day, things can be something quite different. Fortunately, the light:heat ratio usually favors light. Contention is usually not far removed from trying to decide between what does or doesn't constitute misinformation. Not everyone sees things the same way, but such is the nature of life. I tend to peeve more people than average because I want to be sure whomever I'm trying to help doesn't get mislead, which frequently leads to disagreements.

I don't keep track of what you've read so far - did you read the soil post over at the container forum? The fertilizer post?

Here's one that discusses how plant growth is limited that might tickle your science bone. Have fun.

Al

Here is a link that might be useful: How Growth is Limited


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

Thanks Al,

I haven't read anything about fertilizer other than what's included in the basic care post and a soil post. I don't know if I've kept track of what I've read yet either. heh. I could use some help on the fertilizer front.
I'll get started on this one.

Thanks again!

Sarah


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

  • Posted by tapla z5b-6a mid-MI (My Page) on
    Mon, Sep 17, 12 at 15:18

OK - Here's the one about fertilizing.

I think this is the one with the potential to do you the most good ..... just in case you haven't got to it yet.

Al


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

Hi SarahofLayton,

I just want to welcome you and to say that your are in good company here.

Many will give you great information and it will become easy to understand and really become confortable in your ability to understand what you plants needs are. They will tell you what and when and we are here to tend to those needs.

Al has listed some links for you to read and i know you will find them useful. Don't worry if you need to reread them and take your time in soaking in all of this information.

This is really a good time to learn and get aquainted in your knowledge for the care of all of your plants. The repotting will wait until Spring/summer, depending on where you live. So, don't feel that you need to take on to much now. : )

I remember the Ficus that Rina Had to tackle and she did a great job with that huge tree. She knew what she wanted to do. Then she learned what needed to be done with the help of many including AL. They did a great job on that tree. Great teamwork!!! : )

So relax, read and know that many here will help you, encourage you and teach you all that you would like to learn.

I have learned so much here in the last few years and i am so glad to have found this forum and to have the support here. Many here have taught me and i can't thank them enough... including Al, Mike and many more..

Taking a tree and having the confidence to do whatever is needed is the most rewarding feeling when you know it will be happy in your hands. You will see such inprovement in the health of your trees. But remember, that they don't always respond to the repotting as fast as we would like to see, so don't worry. They have their own time to relax and get comfortable in their new enviroment.

Hope you have great success!

Your Peace Lily will be fine.. Looks great!! : )

Good Luck,

Laura


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

  • Posted by tapla z5b-6a mid-MI (My Page) on
    Tue, Sep 18, 12 at 8:03

Laura is one of the 'very helpful and informative' on these forums. Her strongest suit is plumeria, but I know she grows a wide variety of plant material that, by the pictures she posts seems to increase in number by the minute, and grows them very well. She understands plants and her advice is always golden - wants to see you succeed and helps a LOT of others off forum. For her efforts, a GW contributor to be valued above the norm IMO.

Al

..... and according to the buzz, she's a brand new grandma!


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RE: Tried my hand at re-potting a very sad Peace Lily

HI Everyone,

What a nice compliment AL.. Thank you!!

I try and do what i can. Seems like some people like to just email off forum. That's ok. Just as long as they feel comfortable and get the information that they need.
Feels good when the light goes off... It certainly did for me. I;m so glad to have found this forum and all who help... Thank you!!!

Sarah.. I hope your Peace Lily is doing well?

Please keep us updated on you and your plants progress. : )

Take care,

Laura

AL.. I am a new "Grandma" love this little guy..

What a wonderful feeling... : )


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