Urgent transplant of indoor plants
If there are problems in the development of indoor plants that cannot be solved by a simple correction of care, then you have to resort to the so-called emergency transplants. These are the “last chance” procedures, carried out only in case of serious developmental impairment, severe damage to the roots as a result of inattentive watering or the spread of pests and diseases. A change in capacity and substrate in atypical times can both save the plant and destroy it. In urgent transplants, the most important thing is the timeliness and correctness of the procedure itself.
Types of emergency transplants for indoor plants
Emergency transplants of indoor plants are measures that are always resorted to last, when all other means of control have been exhausted. They are carried out only when any delay in changing the soil can lead to the death of the plant. Urgent transplants resort:
- with serious damage by pests and diseases, improper composition and condition of the substrate, in which the plant dies as a result of mold, rot, waterlogging, infection of the soil, extreme acidity;
- Such an increase in rhizome, in which it completely covers the earthen lump, begins to crawl out of the pot and the plant suffers greatly from a lack of soil, nutrients and moisture.
There is a third factor: an emergency transplant is carried out if the plant is in a depressed state, it stops in development, but all other causes are excluded and the alleged cause of the problem is the wrong choice of soil or invisible problems with the substrate and capacity. After being removed from the pot, they inspect and decide which option to use for an emergency transplant.
Accordingly, with two types of problems that are solved using emergency transplants, two types of problems are considered:
- a simple transplant at an atypical time to expand the space for root development.
- complex or complete transplant;
An emergency transplant is carried out only when it is critically necessary, despite the stages of plant development, recommendations for a particular culture and the preferred transplant time. It can be carried out both during the period of active growth, and during the resting phase.
1. A simple transplant of houseplants of an emergency nature
If the cultures become too crowded in the selected container, the roots fill up completely and even get out of the holes for water drainage, the plants begin to suffer from a lack of soil and its resources, then you should not postpone the transplant and wait for typical dates. Such an emergency transplant is not accidentally called simple, because it is carried out practically according to the same principles as any standard plant transplant. This is an on-demand transplant.
For the affected culture, they simply select a container of a larger diameter, which will replace as much of the substrate as possible with fresh, add new soil and provide the rhizome with enough space for free development.
Particular attention should be paid to the selection of the optimal tank size. The fact that the plants are too crowded in the pot does not mean that it needs to be handled in a much larger container - several times larger than the previous one. Even with an emergency transplant, it is not worthwhile to increase the capacity by more than 15% of the volume of the previous pot in any case.
Too large a new container, even in fast-growing and actively developing plants, will only cause your pet to spend all his energy on developing rhizomes again, and you will have to wait for months to see visible results in the form of improvement. After all, to resume the growth and restore the attractiveness of the leaves, and even more so, such a plant can bloom only when the rhizome "has mastered" most of the soil. The most reliable method is to measure the diameter of the old pot in which the plant is growing and add a tenth to it. It will be very easy to select a container in accordance with this indicator.
But other container options are very important. In case of emergency transplantation, associated with the need to urgently increase the size of the pot, do not resort to experiments and drastically change the growth conditions of plants. Make sure that the shape of the container, or rather the ratio of the width and height of the pot, completely repeats the previous planter, it has the same number of drainage holes. The only thing that can be changed is the materials from which the pots are made: transplanting from a plastic container into a natural planter will be a favorable factor for any type of emergency transshipment.
For an emergency transplant of a simple type, several more principles of the procedure should be remembered:
- in no case do not use long-acting fertilizers for plants, and resume normal feeding no earlier than a month after transplanting;
- use the same materials for laying the drainage that the plants or drainage with improved characteristics are used to;
- try to observe the ratio of the height of the drainage and the thickness of the soil layer in the pot;
- choosing the soil, choose a substrate that is ideal for a particular plant, study the acidity parameters and the desired composition.
The procedure for a simple transplant of a houseplant:
- Carefully remove the plants from the old container; if this is difficult, try to tap the pot and only in emergency cases, resort to cutting the substrate in the container.
- After removing the plant, remove only the top contaminated soil layer, if it is free of roots. Do not try to shake, remove or wash away as much soil as possible and do not aggravate the trauma of the plant: with a simple type of transplant, “on demand”, the earthen lump is preserved.
- Observe the same planting level that was in the previous pot (except when the bare roots were raised above the soil level - then they should be sprinkled with a thin layer of soil).
- Plants immediately after such an urgent transplant should be provided with abundant watering, and from the second procedure, switch to the usual humidity mode. Try to place the plants in transitional, mild conditions for at least one week, and only then return them to the familiar environment.
2. Sophisticated emergency transplant
The procedure, which is carried out during the spread of root rot, serious damage, acidification of the soil, the choice of a fundamentally unsuitable type of soil for the plant, the spread of pests and diseases is carried out only when all other measures have been exhausted. Before carrying out such an urgent transplant, you need to try all means, including insecticides, fungicides, modern disinfectants, removing the top layer of the substrate in the pot, completely drying the earthen coma, a sharp change in conditions, etc.
It is not in vain that a complex emergency transplant is called the last resort: it does too much damage to the plant and in itself is one of the most dangerous methods of dealing with problems. After such a transplant, it will be difficult to recover even for the strongest houseplant, and those who are in a weakened state to restore normal development and generally survive can be extremely difficult. This is the most cardinal world available to combat problems, which should really be resorted to in case of emergency.
An urgent transplant of indoor plants caused by diseases, pests or the need to completely replace the soil due to inappropriate conditions does not simply mean changing the capacity of the substrate. Such a transplant affects several levels of plant treatment, including almost always including pruning of damaged parts of the rhizome.
And it is possible to understand exactly what measures will be needed in each particular case only after the plant, together with the soil lump, has been removed from the old pot. During the removal procedure, you must act as carefully as possible, trying to minimize additional injuries. After the plant is studied, you need to carefully examine the earthen lump and re-diagnose the problem. Only after this should the plant rhizome be freed from the soil.
During an emergency transplant of this type, it is necessary to completely remove the old soil. And to do this is not so simple. In order to completely remove the old soil from the roots of the plant and remove even the smallest particles of the affected soil, it is necessary to carry out the following procedures:
- Untangle the roots by first removing the loose soil.
- Knock the substrate, gently shaking the plant and sorting out the rhizome, removing most of the substrate by mechanical means.
- Wash the rhizome of the plant to completely remove soil residues (for complete cleaning in most cases, you need to do a few soaks with a change of water).
After the affected soil is washed away from the rhizome of the plant, they immediately begin a thorough examination of all the roots. Any damaged parts on the roots must be trimmed, removing all dry, rotten, damaged by pests areas up to healthy tissues. In this case, only a sharp knife should be used, disinfecting it after each cut or at least several times during the procedure. Slices on the roots should immediately sprinkle with crushed charcoal.
After completion of the mechanical removal of damaged parts of underground shoots, the plants must be re-soaked in clean water for final cleaning. Rhizome is immersed in clean, warm water for 20-30 minutes.
After repeated washing, mandatory treatment with disinfectants is carried out. To do this, according to the manufacturer’s instructions, prepare a solution of a fungicide suitable for dealing with a specific problem or at least a weak solution of potassium permanganate. The rhizome is soaked in a disinfecting composition for 30 minutes or 1 hour, slightly dried and each section is re-treated with crushed coal.
Planting a plant that has undergone complex emergency treatment is also carried out according to its own special rules. It is advisable to use new containers, but if there is no need to increase their volume, you can use the old pot. It is carefully treated and disinfected, scalded with boiling water and additionally immersed in a solution of fungicide or potassium permanganate. Subsequent measures consist of the following steps:
- A drainage layer of clean, fresh materials is laid at the bottom of the disinfected or new container, always covering it with coarse-grained sand from above.
- A mound of earth is poured on top of the drainage layer, onto which the plant is very carefully set.
- The roots are carefully spread and evenly distributed, after which the voids between the roots are gently poured with a substrate and slightly compact the soil with a palm.
- After fixing the roots in the soil, the pot is completely filled with the substrate, leaving space only for comfortable watering.
Those who underwent a complex line culture transplant are exposed in a dark place with moderate room temperatures. For 2-3 days to heal wounds on the roots and dry the rhizome, watering should be abandoned (the plant is not watered even after planting). If the emergency transplant was caused by excessive humidity, rot was widespread or pests only 2-3 days after the transplant carry out very poor watering, only slightly moistening the soil. Over the next 1-2 weeks, watering is rarely carried out, with a minimum amount of moisture, allowing the substrate in the pot to completely dry between procedures. If the culture is one of the moisture-loving ones and can die as a result of drought, then the absence of the necessary frequency of watering should be compensated by an increase in air humidity.
After the initial adaptation, the plant is gradually and very slowly transferred to the usual irrigation scheme. At the same time, he is returned to the cultivation conditions recommended for him. Feeding can only be resumed when there are signs of the beginning of growth and restoration of the plant. The frequency of the procedures is selected for each specific crop, but the dosage of fertilizers for the first top dressing is reduced by 4 times, then the plants are transferred to half-reduced doses and only then full care is restored.
Preventing a problem is easier than solving it.
The easiest way to avoid the need to urgently transplant your plant is to ensure regular and proper care, timely change of containers and renewal of the substrate. Follow the recommended frequency of transplants, choose the right type of soil for each type and variety.
A classic spring transplant, annual for young plants and with a frequency of once every 2-3 years for large and adult crops, allows you not to worry about your plant needing transplantation in atypical times. But one timely transplant is not enough. It must be supplemented with proper care, observing all the rules for growing a particular plant. Elimination of two main factors - improper care and lack of transplants - will also allow avoiding situations in which plants will need really drastic measures.
No matter how difficult care indoor plants require, no matter how difficult it is to provide them with all the necessary conditions, any regular measures are still easier than an emergency transplant. Especially when it comes to emergency transplantation of a complex type. It is far from always possible to save plants using this cardinal procedure; this is the last, and far from a guaranteed chance of solving problems.