Houseplants forum: Repot or not?

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Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
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Bonehead
Oct 17, 2014 2:19 PM CST
I keep my few houseplants outside during summer. Moving them inside and wondering if I should pot up my ponytail plant? It's been in this pot for about 2-3 years I think. Pot is 8" high with top diameter of 9". There are some roots coming out of the drain hole, but not totally jammed up. Thanks for any suggestions.
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Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
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tarev
Oct 17, 2014 2:27 PM CST
I would repot, just to refresh the soil, trim some roots, but will hold off till Spring to do it.

Plantomaniac08
Oct 17, 2014 5:28 PM CST
You could probably place it back in the same pot after root pruning. These don't have extensive root systems and don't necessarily need large pots. I've seen a 6ft specimen in a pot thay wasn't that much wider than the caudex (base). It was a taller pot though, so it did have room to spread roots. But, I think I remember the owner mentioning it had been in that pot for years, she'd just root prune it every couple years and back it'd go.

Planto
Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Organic Gardener Herbs Dragonflies Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry
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Bonehead
Oct 17, 2014 5:57 PM CST
Thanks. We had a much older one in my old workplace and it was also in a taller pot (to accommodate the weeping leaves which hung down to the floor) and as I recall the caudex (new word for me) was huge and not that far from the sides of the pot. I took on the responsibility to water the plants between visits from our Plant Lady and she told me to be pretty stingy with the water because the caudex stored water for later use. Sounds like repotting in the spring with some root pruning should do it for this guy. How much does one prune on the roots?
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.

Plantomaniac08
Oct 17, 2014 5:58 PM CST
No more than half, but a third of the root ball would be fine.

Planto
Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Organic Gardener Herbs Dragonflies Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry
Birds Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Sages Plant Identifier
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Bonehead
Oct 17, 2014 6:00 PM CST
Thanks so much. Newly discovered forum for me, which I intend to make good use of - my luck with house plants is abyssmal, so I thought I would take it one plant at a time until I get the hang of their needs.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.

Plantomaniac08
Oct 17, 2014 7:38 PM CST
You're welcome! I am by no means an expert myself and always have something to learn. I'm glad you decided to come on over to this forum, there are lots of helpful and friendly folks here. Welcome!

Sometimes the plants we try are not easy to begin with and we think it's a black thumb or other cause, when the plant was just fussy to start with. I'm sure that your houseplant thumb is greener than you think and it may just take some time to figure out what works for you! Smiling

Plants I would recommend if you don't already own them are 'Golden Pothos,' 'Heart-Leaf Philodendron, and 'Spider Plant.' These can tolerate a wide range of conditions and should help you with gaining confidence in your ability to take care of houseplants.

Your 'Ponytail Palm' looks happy from what I can tell. They also are known to be easy.

Planto

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