Ask a Question forum: Help! Huge purple waffle plant went into shock after trying to divide

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Pennsylvania
sometimesgreenthumb
Dec 20, 2018 9:43 AM CST
I am happy to have found this site. I have a purple waffle plant that started as a tiny cutting from Walmart but grew into a behemoth. I have re potted it 4 times since I bought it in early summer. I thought I would divide it last night. The root system was one massive blob. I had to tear it apart to separate it. I felt like the roots were screaming at me. Should I have cut the roots? Anyway, the transplanted part went into shock. I trimmed it back and have put it in a window with several hours of indirect light. Should I be hopeful or just dump the thing. Also the mother plant looks very sad and shocky. Wilted leaves and rubbery stems. Please help!! Thanks
Name: Erica
Ohio (Zone 6a)
Houseplants
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OpieDoodle
Dec 20, 2018 11:00 AM CST
I would try to maintain some hope but it'll be a slow process. In the winter roots recover really slowly so its not an ideal time to mess with the roots. I would try to leave it alone as much as you can and hopefully it'll perk back up. Depending on how much damage was done to the roots it may not recover.
Name: Karen
NM (Zone 7b)
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plantmanager
Dec 20, 2018 11:09 AM CST
Here is our database info on it.
Hemigraphis exotica
Repotting it now might have set it back, but if you're careful and don't overwater it should recover.
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Name: Lin
Sebastian, Florida (Zone 10a)

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plantladylin
Dec 20, 2018 12:09 PM CST
Hi sometimesgreenthumb, Welcome!

Your Purple Waffle Plant (Hemigraphis 'Exotica') has received a horrendous shock at being uprooted from it's current container and the roots being ripped apart.

Although this is the time of year when plants aren't actively growing, if it was a behemoth and too large for it's container, the best method of re-potting would have been to up-size to a pot one size larger by gently removing the entire root ball, trying to keep it as intact as possible, placing it into it's new container and filling in with fresh soil. If you wanted to propagate for additional plants, the best method would be stem cuttings as you've mentioned that you've done in the past.

Give your plants bright, indirect light and try to keep the soil slightly moist but not overly soggy. Hopefully with a little time, they will perk up and recover from the shock.
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