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One essential aspect of peace lily care is repotting, which ensures your plant continues growing and thriving. 

This crucial process provides the plant with a larger pot, fresh soil, and better root health, all contributing to the peace lily’s overall well-being.

By periodically repotting your peace lily, you are proactively guaranteeing its long-term health, allowing it to flourish and produce its signature white blooms.

 

Why is Repotting Important?

Repotting a peace lily is important for several reasons:

  • Space: As your plant grows, its roots require more room to spread out and develop properly. Repotting provides your peace lily with a larger container to accommodate this growth.
  • Fresh soil: Over time, the nutrients in the potting mix become depleted. Repotting introduces fresh soil, ensuring your plant receives the nutrients it needs to grow and bloom.
  • Root health: When a peace lily becomes root-bound, its roots can no longer absorb water and nutrients efficiently. Repotting prevents root-bound issues and promotes healthy root development.

 

When to Repot Your Peace Lily

There are a few key signs that it’s time to repot your peace lily:

  • Root visibility: If you notice roots growing out of the drainage holes or over the edge of the pot, it’s time to repot.
  • Soil depletion: If the soil dries out quickly after watering or has become compacted, it’s time to repot.
  • Slowed growth: If your peace lily isn’t growing or blooming as well as it used to, it may benefit from repotting.

The best time to repot your peace lily is every 1-2 years or when you notice any of the above signs. 

Spring and early summer are the ideal times to repot, as the plant is in its active growth phase.

 

Spathiphyllum diamond, variegated peace lily

 

Tools You Need to Repot a Peace Lily Plant

When repotting a peace lily plant, gathering the necessary tools and materials is essential to ensure a smooth and successful process. 

Here’s a list of items you’ll need:

  • New pot: Choose a pot that is 2 cm–5 cm larger in diameter than the current pot. Make sure it has drainage holes to prevent waterlogged roots.
  • Potting mix: Opt for a high-quality, well-draining potting soil, preferably one designed for indoor plants or tropical plants.
  • Perlite or vermiculite: These materials help improve soil aeration and drainage, which is vital for peace lily plants.
  • Trowel or scoop: A small trowel or scoop will make transferring soil to and from the pots easier.
  • Clean, sharp scissors or pruning shears: Use these to trim away any damaged or unhealthy roots during the repotting process.
  • Gardening gloves: Wearing gloves can protect your hands from soil, sharp roots and potential skin irritation from handling the plant.
  • Newspaper or drop cloth: Spread a newspaper or drop cloth on your workspace to catch any spills or messes, making cleanup easier.
  • Watering can: Have a watering can ready to thoroughly water your repotted peace lily plant.
  • Pebble tray (optional): A tray filled with pebbles and water can maintain humidity around your peace lily after repotting, if desired.

 

How to Repot Peace Lilies

 

Step 1: Choose a new pot

Peace lilies will need a container that’s at least 2 cm–5 cm larger in diameter than the current pot.

Check that the new pot has drainage holes to prevent root rot and waterlogging.

 

Step 2: Prepare the potting mix

Combine a high-quality, well-draining potting soil with perlite or vermiculite in the same pot at a 3:1 ratio.

This provides the proper balance of moisture retention and drainage.

 

Step 3: Remove the plant

removing the peace lily plant from the pot

Gently remove the peace lily from its current pot by tipping it sideways and easing the plant out of the old pot.

Be careful not to damage the roots.

 

Step 4: Inspect and trim the roots

peace lily root

Examine the roots for signs of rot or damage, trimming away any unhealthy sections with clean, sharp scissors.

If the peace lily is root-bound, gently tease the roots apart to encourage new growth.

 

Step 5: Add soil to the new pot

Place a layer of the prepared potting mix at the bottom of the new pot, ensuring that the peace lily will sit at the same height as in the previous pot.

 

Step 6: Position the plant

Place the peace lily in the new pot, spreading its roots out over the soil layer.

 

Step 7: Fill with soil

 peace lily on a pot filled with soil.

Add the remaining potting mix around the plant, pressing it down gently to eliminate air pockets. Leave about 2 cm of space between the soil surface and the pot rim to accommodate watering.

 

Step 8: Water thoroughly

Water your repotted peace lily until the excess water drains from the bottom of the pot. This helps the soil settle around the roots.

 

Step 9: Post-repotting care

Continue caring for your peace lily as usual. Place your peace lily in a spot with bright, indirect light and maintain its usual care routine.

Keep an eye on your plant’s moisture levels, as the new pot and soil may retain water differently than before. 

Water when the top inch of the soil feels dry, and avoid overwatering.

 

Step 10: Monitor progress

In the weeks following repotting, keep an eye on your peace lily for any signs of stress or transplant shock. 

Wilting, yellowing leaves, or slowed growth can indicate that your plant is not adjusting to its new environment.

Be patient and continue providing consistent care. Your peace lily should recover within a few weeks and resume its regular growth pattern.

 

Should You Divide or Repot Your Overgrown Peace Lily?

When dealing with an overgrown peace lily, you have two options: repotting or dividing.

The choice depends on your desired outcome and the plant’s overall health.

 

Repot

If your peace lily is healthy and you want to maintain its size or allow it to grow larger, repotting is the best option.

Repotting involves moving the entire plant to a larger pot, giving the roots more space to grow and providing fresh soil. This method allows the plant to grow and produce more foliage and blooms.

 

Divide or split

A line of Spathiphyllum or peace lily plants

If your peace lily variety is huge or you want to create multiple smaller plants, dividing is a suitable option. 

Dividing involves separating the plant into two or more smaller plants, each with its own root system and foliage.

This method is useful for sharing plants with friends and family or creating more plants for your collection. 

You must ensure that each division has a healthy root system and at least one or two leaves.

If you’re not sure whether to repot or divide your overgrown peace lily, consider these factors:

 

Desired outcome

If you want a larger plant, repotting is the best choice. 

If you’d like to create multiple smaller plants, dividing is the way to go.

 

Plant health

If your peace lily is healthy and thriving, either option is suitable. 

If the plant is struggling or has sections with damaged roots, dividing can help remove the unhealthy parts and encourage new growth.

 

Available space

Dividing might be the better option if you have limited space or prefer smaller plants. 

Conversely, repotting is a suitable choice if you have ample space and enjoy larger plants.

Whether you choose to repot or divide your overgrown peace lily depends on your preferences and the plant’s health. 

Both options can lead to successful outcomes when done correctly, promoting the growth and well-being of your peace lily.

 

Reducing the Risk of Transplant Shock

peace lily removed from pot

Transplant shock is a common issue peace lilies may face when being repotted or transplanted. 

Here are some tips for reducing the risk of transplant shock:

  1. Choose the right time: Repot your peace lily during its active growth phase, usually in the spring or early summer. This allows the plant to recover more quickly from the stress of repotting.
  2. Prepare the new pot and soil: Select a pot with proper drainage and use a high-quality, well-draining potting mix combined with perlite or vermiculite. This provides the right environment for your peace lily to establish itself in its new home.
  3. Water the plant before repotting: Ensure your peace lily is well-hydrated before repotting by watering it a few hours before the process. A hydrated plant will handle the stress of repotting better.
  4. Be gentle with the roots: When removing the peace lily from its current pot and placing it in the new one, handle the roots gently to avoid causing unnecessary damage.
  5. Maintain the original soil level: When repotting, make sure the peace lily sits at the same soil level as it was in its previous pot. Burying the plant too deep or too shallow can stress the plant and hinder its recovery.
  6. Avoid excessive root pruning: While trimming damaged or rotten roots is essential, avoid excessive root pruning, as it can cause additional stress to the plant.
  7. Water thoroughly after repotting: Water the peace lily well to help the soil settle around the roots and reduce air pockets that can cause root damage.
  8. Provide proper post-repotting care: Place your repotted peace lily in a spot with bright, indirect light and maintain its usual care routine. Avoid placing the plant in extreme temperatures or direct sunlight during the first few weeks after repotting.
  9. Be patient: Give your peace lily time to adjust to its new environment. The plant may take a few weeks to recover and show new growth. Monitor the plant’s progress and provide consistent care during this period.

 

FAQs

 

How to loosen a peace lily root ball

Loosening a peace lily root ball is important when repotting or dividing the plant, especially if it’s root-bound. 

Doing so gently and carefully will help promote healthy root growth in the new pot.

  1. Gently remove the peace lily from its current pot by tipping it sideways and carefully easing the plant out.
  2. Examine the roots for any signs of rot, damage or entanglement. If the roots are tightly wrapped around the root ball, you most likely have a root- bound peace lily.
  3. Start by gently massaging the root ball with your fingers to loosen the soil and detangle the roots.
  4. Begin at the bottom of the root ball and work your way up, gradually untangling the roots and spreading them out.
  5. Make 2 cm vertical cuts if the roots are extremely compacted and difficult to separate. This encourages the roots to grow outward once the plant is repotted.
  6. Use clean, sharp scissors or pruning shears to remove damaged, rotten or excessively long roots.
  7. Once the root ball is loosened and the roots are untangled, you can proceed with repotting or dividing the peace lily.

 

Do peace lilies need big pots?

Spathiphyllum flower in the white pot in a room

Peace lilies don’t necessarily need big pots, as they can adapt well to various pot sizes. However, the size of the pot does impact the overall size and growth of the plant. 

As long as the pot has proper drainage and provides enough room for root development, your peace lily should grow and thrive.

 

Can you repot peace lily while flowering?

While it is possible to repot a peace lily while it is flowering, it’s best to wait until the plant has finished blooming to minimise stress and potential damage to the blooms.

The only time you should repot a flowering peace lily is when it’s suffering from severe issues like root rot, pests or overcrowded roots.

If repotting during flowering is unavoidable, take extra care and provide proper post-repotting care to ensure the plant’s health and well-being.

 

Can you repot a dying peace lily?

Yes, you can repot a dying peace lily, and doing so may even help revive the plant if the issues causing its decline are related to root problems or inadequate growing conditions. 

However, it’s crucial to identify why your plant is deteriorating and address any underlying issues during the repotting process.

 

Should you repot a peace lily with root rot?

Yes, repotting peace lilies with root rot is often necessary to save the plant and help it recover. 

Root rot is typically caused by overwatering or poor drainage, leading to waterlogged soil and damage to the plant’s roots.

 

Your Peace Lily Plant’s Roots Need Room to Grow

Remember to be patient. Even expert gardeners need to wait for their peace lilies to settle into their new containers. 

And your plant may take a few weeks to adjust to its new pot and soil conditions. With consistent care, your peace lily will reward you with beautiful foliage and blooms for years.

About Author

Jamie Donovan

Jamie is an Australian horticulturalist and landscape designer. He enjoys writing about landscape architecture, garden design and lifestyle topics.

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About Author

Jamie Donovan

Jamie is an Australian horticulturalist and landscape designer. He enjoys writing about landscape architecture, garden design and lifestyle topics.

Share