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How to Repot a Snake Plant in 6 Simple and Easy Steps

Written by William Golder

Fact checked by Dorian Goodwin

how to repot a snake plant

Though repotting snake plants might sound toilsome, they are easy since they are low-maintenance kinds of plants.

Giving snake plants the little effort they need to get repotted can help maintain their roots’ healthy growth and keep their leaves firm and long.

Contrariwise, crowding them in a small space may give their roots a hard time growing and getting sufficient nutrients and water. It can also reduce the soil’s quality.

To prevent putting your snake plants at risk of poor root growth, bad soil quality, or, worst, killing them off. Read further to know how to repot a snake plant.

Detailed Guide to Repot or Divide Snake Plants

What to prepare

  • Pot with drainage holes

For repotting: 2″ bigger than your previous pot

For dividing: 6″ pot size depending on how large the pup is

  • 50g of coarse sand
  • 25g of peat moss
  • 25g of potting mix
  • Garden gloves
  • Sterile knife or scissors
  • Newspaper or a few old clothes

Step 1: Prepare your tools and remove the snake plant out of the pot.

snake-plant-pups

The first step in repotting is to gather the required equipment for quick repotting and remove the snake plant from its pot.

The procedures are as follows:

  • Step 1: Set up the necessary tools in your workspace and wear gloves.
  • Step 2: To minimize clutter, place the newspaper or old garments beneath your tools and potted plants.
  • Step 3: Using the sterile knife, loosen the soil around your snake plants. Make sure not to cut or damage the roots as you gently poke the soil in the area.
  • Step 4: Flip the pot upside down.
  • Step 5: With one hand, gently pull the plant’s base while using the other to support the plant’s pot.

Step 2: Prune the roots of the snake plant

Pruning the roots of the snake plant will allow a growth stimulation that will help the roots absorb more nutrients from the soil.

When pruning roots, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to cut most of the roots, only trim at least 30% of them and remove the old roots that are unbeneficial to the plants.

Here are the steps when root pruning:

  • Step 1: Once the root ball is out of your plant, trim at least 30% of the roots using a pair of scissors.
  • Step 2: Remove the old roots hanging around the root ball.

Step 3: Loosen the soil inside the root ball and cut the pups

replant-a-snake-plant

To avoid overcrowding the pot and causing it to become distorted or damaged, dividing snake plant is done to segregate the pups from the parent plant.

The white or light orange-colored stem or also known as the rhizome, is the pup of the main plant located in the inner soil.

You’ll usually only see the tip of the pup above the soil since its roots are hidden within, and you won’t be able to see it unless you loosen the soil.

  • Loosen the soil inside the root ball. The root ball is the compiled roots that surround the pot-shaped dirt.
  • Since roots are a bit delicate, using your fingers is a fine choice to lose the soil.
  • Once you see the entire body of pups, cut the pups with some of their roots using a pair of scissors to separate snake plant from them.

Step 4: Fill the pot with a potting mix

transplant-snake-plant

When you replant a snake plant, filling it with the right potting mix can help your plant hold only the necessary water it needs for growing to avoid drowning.

Since they can store water for days, a snake plant that suffers from overwatering usually drowns and dies with root rot.

One factor that causes root rotting is when the soil used for snake plants is not compatible with them.

Therefore, soil that drains effectively and retains moisture for the appropriate amount can prevent root rot and the entire plant from suffocating due to lack of oxygen.

Here are the procedures for making a potting mixture suitable for your snake plants:

  • Mix 50g of coarse sand, 25g of peat moss, and 25g of potting mix. This mixture will make well-draining soil.
  • Fill the pot with potting mix for at least ⅓ from the bottom.

Step 5: Replant the snake plant

do-snake-plants-like-to-be-root-bound

When you transplant snake plant into a new pot, it is worth noting that the pot must have drainage holes for safer flow when watering it, as it will lessen the risk of root rot due to overwatering.

For repotting

  • After filling the bottom with a layer of soil, place the main plant inside the new pot.
  • While holding the main plant, fill the pot with a potting mix just until before the base of the leaves.
  • To prevent rotting, make sure that the surface of the soil will not cover the base of the leaves because the damp soil may add too much moisture to the foliage.
  • Press down on the soil’s surface to steady its firm position.

For dividing

  • Fill the pot with a potting mix.
  • Gently press the pup slightly below the soil.
  • Do not exert too much pressure. Just put part of the soil into the roots.

Step 6: Water and Place them in a bright covered area without direct sunlight

dividing-snake-plant

  • Slightly water the newly transplanted plants.

Watering the newly transplanted snake plants a bit can help establish the roots under the new soil and make them hydrated.

Since snake plants can store water for days, watering them after a day or two after being moistened in a new pot is helpful in not exposing them to too much moisture.

  • Place them in a covered area without direct sunlight.

Placing them under direct sunlight can dry them out and weaken their roots and leaves.

A covered garage with a bright area or inside a room a bit far from the window is an ideal place to put them.

Frequently Asked Questions

signs-to-repot-snake-plant

1. When to repot a Snake Plant?

Late winter is the perfect period to repot the snake plants since they are inactive in this phase.

However, as soon as one of these signs to repot snake plant appears, you should do so immediately:

  • The holes in the pots are being filled by the roots.
  • The soil quickly dries out.
  • New snake plant pups are sprouting
  • The plastic pot is reshaping, or the pot is cracking.
  • The heavy foliage is slanting downward.

2. How often should you repot snake plants?

Snake plants should be repotted every 3-5 years to avoid being root-bound. It will also allow the roots to grow in fresh, quality soil.

3. What kind of soil do Snake Plants like?

Since the leaves of the snake plants can carry water for a day or two, or even more.

A well-draining and coarse-textured soil, like light loamy soil, is ideal. This kind of soil only holds the right amount of water and doesn’t retain it for long.

4. Why should I repot or divide Snake Plants?

Repotting the snake plants into a more spacious pot and dividing the pups into a new pot away from the main plant is necessary to avoid the roots getting bounded heavily below.

When they are repotted, it will allow the roots to grow and help them absorb the right amount of water, nutrients, and oxygen from the soil and relay it to the leaves well.

5. Do snake plants like to be root bound?

If the roots can still obtain the necessary water and oxygen, then there is no problem if their roots get entangled a bit.

However, snake plants don’t like when their roots are heavily entangled below since this prevents them from getting enough oxygen and water, which causes them to suffocate and dry up.

Conclusion

We now understand that repotting snake plants is a pretty simple process. It only takes six steps to save our snake plant from being root-bound.

Not only does repotting make the snake plant root healthy and leaves lively, but it also makes the entire plant grow well by having enough oxygen, water, and nutrients from the soil.

Always remember that using the appropriate type of soil suitable for your snake plants can help prevent root rotting.

Hopefully, you learned a lot about how to repot a snake plant to give them a happy life in your pots.

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A Few Words From the Author

William-Golder

William Golder