Peace lilies are known for their beautiful white flowers and fragrant smell. And considering they’re low-maintenance, these plants are attractive options for homeowners with little gardening experience.
If you have peace lilies in your house, it’s vital to change their containers every one to two years so that they have space to spread and grow bigger. Read below and learn how to repot a peace lily plant.
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Tools You need to Repot a Peace Lily Plant
Before repotting a peace lily, make sure you have the following:
1. A new pot
The new pot should be two inches bigger than your current container. Do not go over this peace lily pot size, as huge planters with more soil will need more water. Moreover, a higher soil mass will dry more slowly, leading to sogginess.
While you’re picking containers, look for drainage holes at the bottom as well. I recommend lining a coffee filter on top of these holes to keep the potting mix from spilling out, though this is optional.
These will keep your furniture clean, so you don’t have to wipe off scattered dirt and soil after repotting.
3. Potting mix
Prepare three parts each of perlite, coconut fiber, and orchid barks, plus one part of worm castings. Combine them to create your potting mix.
Alternatively, a commercial product like Noot’s The Mix or Miracle-Gro’s Indoor Potting Mix will do.
4. Rubbing alcohol
Use 70% rubbing alcohol to sanitize your cutting tools and minimize disease risks. Soak the tools in equal parts of alcohol and water for at least five minutes, then run them under water before use.
This step is essential every time you trim off dead stems or diseased roots from your peace lily.
Peace lilies can irritate those with sensitive skin. So, wear gloves before replanting a peace lily to prevent contact dermatitis. This step will also keep soil bacteria from getting onto your skin.
- Water for irrigation
Step by step for Repoting a Peace Lily Plant
1. Water peace lilies a day before repotting.
This measure will limit peace lily repotting shock, since the plant won’t have to endure drought and uprooting simultaneously.
2. Remove the peace lily from its current container. Cut off all diseased parts.
Upend the container and gently grab the peace lily at its base. If the plant doesn’t slide out quickly, shake the pot slightly and run a knife along its rim.
Once the plant is dislodged, check it for root rot. Mushiness, foul soil, and brown foliage often indicate sick roots that need trimming. It’s essential that you remove them and not repot a peace lily with root rot. Otherwise, the plant will eventually die.
While you’re at it, check for signs of discolored and/or deformed leaves as well. If there are any, trim them before moving on to the next step.
3. Put the peace lily in the new pot.
Before you transplant a peace lily, fill ⅓ of the new container with your potting mix. Pry apart the plant roots with your fingers if they’re clumped together.
Extremely thick or entrenched roots may also benefit from a trim, so long as you cut off ⅓ of their length at most.
At this point, put the peace lily at the center of the new container. Pour more plant mix into it so that there’s only one inch empty between the roots and the pot’s upper edge.
Press the mix gently to eliminate air pockets, then water it and keep the lily under indirect light. Twelve hours of indirect sunshine per day are ideal, though six to seven hours of grow lights will suffice as well, especially if your room is mostly dark.
Fertilizing is ill-advised, especially during the first month after you replant a peace lily. At the very least, wait six weeks before applying plant food.
The top two inches of the potting mix should be damp, so check the container and water at regular intervals. In winter, irrigate once every two weeks only.
Best Time to Repot a Peace Lily Plant
It’s ideal to pot a peace lily when it’s emerging from dormancy, around February or March. This late winter/early spring repotting will encourage the plant to grow under warm temperatures.
However, you can repot peace lily while flowering or any time you want. Although prior to blooming remains the best period, it’s not a hard and fast rule, especially if your lily is stricken by disease.
Repotting peace lily dying plants will spare you from having to discard your flowers, provided you satisfy their growing conditions and remove pests or dead stems.
How do you know when to repot a peace lily?
If you see your peace lily root bound, repotting is necessary. A root-bound plant is deprived of the oxygen it needs, which is why you often see its roots poking through the drain holes or over the container’s rim.
In this state, the roots may form a circle rather than spreading out, and there are often brown foliage, stagnant growth, and cracks in the planter.
Other signs you should watch out for are failure to retain water, floppy/deformed leaves, or a permanently soggy soil.
What kind of soil does a peace lily need?
Peace lilies grow best in grainy mediums with a high level of organic content.
Using soil for them is not recommended, as it often contains bacteria and other harmful pests that ruin plant health. Instead, it’s better to buy a commercial soil-free mix or make your own.
Whatever you do, things like peat moss, pumice, perlite, and coco fiber are ideal for your container mix, as they provide a balance between drainage and water retention. Avoid commercial products that combine fertilizers with the mix itself, since peace lilies aren’t heavy feeders.
In the meantime, here are some potting mediums for peace lilies that are worth trying:
- Two parts compost, two parts coco fiber or peat moss, one part vermiculite, plus an equal amount of perlite
- Jessi Mae’s Air Cleaning Plant Soil Blend
- Rosy Soil Indoor Potting Mix
Should I water peace lily after repotting?
If the plant mix is dry, then yes, you should water it. Give the pot enough moisture that liquid drips out of the bottom drain holes. Use a tray to catch the excess water, but don’t let the peace lily soak in it for more than twenty minutes.
Repotting or dividing peace lily — which is better?
The answer depends on your preference.
If you want your plant to grow in size, repot a large peace lily. Otherwise, dividing it into mini plants is better for selling, gifting, or minimizing the space your Spathiphyllum occupies.
If you choose to divide the lily, ensure each separated part has three stems or leaves. You should also water the container before removing the plant and splitting it.
Afterward, cut the roots into sections and place each baby lily into a new container, following the same planting depth as the one in your original pot, then water until the top ½ inch of the soil is damp.
Hopefully, you now know how to repot a peace lily plant. The steps are simple enough, even for newbies at gardening. The only thing that may pose a bit of trouble for most people is selecting an appropriate potting mix.
So, try the DIY combinations we described above, and remember that the planting medium should have a pH of 5.8 to 6.5.
Here are some guides on repotting plants you can refer to:
- Repotting a snake plant: A Comprehensive Guide
- Best time to Repot Jade Plants
- How to repot a spider plant
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