Transplanting Plants Into A Larger Container

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We finished up our last blog discussing how to properly propagate a plant asexually and this week we will continue on the same path talking about how to properly transplant your plants into larger containers or even different media. This becomes very crucial when your plans mature and become cramped in their container. Roots in a cramped system can become inhibited and root-bound causing your plant to be stunted and lanky (have larger distances between nodes).

Taking a plant out of its container to transplant Turning a plant upside-down in its container to get it ready to transplant.

Before transplanting there are a couple of things you want to consider. You want a bigger container for you plant, but a container too big for your plant can be a waste of not only money but also space. A general rule of thumb is 12 inches of plant height per gallon. For example if you had a plant that was 36’’ tall you would generally want around a 3-gallon container. To try and limit the amount of stress that your plant goes through during the transplanting stage, I suggest pre treating your new media at least a couple days before transplanting with Trichoderma bacteria and vitamin B such as SubCulture B and SubCulture M, which are both made by General Hydroponics. Pre-treating media is recommended for soil—for other hydroponic media, simply mix the Trichoderma and bacteria into a water solution. When transplanting you will want to create a hole in the media to match the size of the root ball of your plant. This next step is where growers face the most problems. Be careful and patient removing the root ball from the old container. Damaging the roots during this process can make the transplanting process much more difficult if not unsuccessful. The best way to extract the root ball is by placing the stem in between your fingers and then gently flipping the plant and container upside down. At this point you will want to slowly wiggle out the root ball and surrounding media until it comes completely out of the pot.

[caption id="attachment_74" align="alignright" width="290"]Transplanting a cutting clone into new pot Transplanting a seedling into a larger pot[/caption]

Once you have completed this step you are now ready to place the root ball into the hole you dug in the new container. With the root ball in the new media, make sure to pack in the media around the ball to secure the plant in the pot. At this point you can water and prune the plant as you normally would. For some added help during transplant, use SuperCharger which is a combination of Calcium, Potassium, vitamin B and other substances that all work to help stimulate and protect your transplants and clones.

Transplanting can be very simple but at the same time it can easily go wrong. By taking these simple steps you should see a noticeable difference in the survival rate of transplants as well as vigorous growth.

This article was written by Tom Feezel, Plant Specialist at Growers House (