Before I started off, I made sure to wait until the soil dried out a decent amount so it would just fall off of the roots, but not enough to have the plant stressed before I even get my hands on it.
As a rule of thumb, if the soil near the roots looks like it did when you got it out of the compost bag, you’re in luck and will be able to start straight away. Also, grab a drink and your stereo, it’ll make more sense later.
To start off, well be looking for the crowns (circled in picture). These are offshoots of the original plant and easily separated into as many plants as you have crowns.
Because well be re-potting the smaller one in a new container, its a good idea to look for something smaller to avoid your peace lily feeling like a little fish in a big pond. Once you’re ready to start snipping, move into a cool, shaded location (even better if you’re doing this early in the morning or late at night) and grab your secateurs and a comfortable surface to sit on.
If your plant is already thriving, its very likely that the roots will be incredibly tangled, so it may take a while to fully pull the roots apart and this is where the drink and music come in handy. It took me roughly 25 minutes of prying with my huge bear hands, but its very likely that you’ll be able to get it done a lot faster than me. Go slowly and try to work from top to bottom.
When (not if) you break your first root, don’t worry about it at all. Its practically impossible to completely avoid breaking a few eggs while making this omelette, so as long as you arent swinging an axe at your poor peace lily, they’ll shrug it off and live through it.
By the time you’ve reached the point where you’re pretty much finished tugging your plants apart, you’ll notice that the plants are connected, sometimes in several places, to the main plant (which well call the hub). Grab your secateurs and sever all connections, being sure to avoid accidentally cutting the main roots away.
Unfortunately, the one picture that I really needed detail for is the blurriest one I took and I didn’t notice until I came inside. Ill show you it anyway, hopefully, someone has an unblur plugin that they could help me out with.
Pretend you’re seeing a well-taken picture of the root connectors right here.
When you’re was done, you should be left with something looking like this.
Cleaning up and making sure your plant doesnt die
Although we took a lot of care with the whole process, weve still put our peace lilies under a massive amount of stress and now is a great time to turn in to a super-caring parent.
If you notice that your plant is leaning, make sure youve compressed the top layer of soil and if that doesnt help, slide in a wooden rod to provide a little support until the roots take to their new home.
Dont worry too much about wilting at first, its not anything to panic about until well in to the second week, at which point you should consider a few things:
- Is the new pot too big? If you started with a 30cm diameter pot, your new one should be close to 15cm to keep the root-ball compact and cosy
- Did you fertilise? Peace lilies are very sensitive to strong fertilisers and will struggle to cope with being re-potted and burned by the fertiliser all at once. If youre sure this is the problem, take your plant back out and rinse off the roots, then re-pot
- How deep did it go? Youll want to re-pot at the same depth as your previous plant and try to keep a similar root shape (dont have them spread out if they were bunched up beforehand)
If those suggestions didnt solve the problem, theres another post I wrote up on peace lily care that you can check out for troubleshooting tips.
For those of you giving this a go, how did it work out for you?