You may be wondering what is houseplant root pruning? In short, it’s a way to keep your best houseplants from becoming root bound or overgrown or how to promote healthy root growth. Or all of the above.
But to clarify further, we asked our plant experts to break down the practice of root pruning, how to do it, and why it’s good for your plants. or not.
What is houseplant root pruning?
Also known as root pruning, we first came across houseplant root pruning through a TikTok video by @mariahgrows showing a heavily rooted and overgrown Monstera plant while the creator slices off the bottom of the root structure with a knife.
Was it worth it? 🤔
♬ original sound – Maria
Which piqued our curiosity as to why she does this and whether this is something experts recommend, especially if you have some of the best fast-growing houseplants on your hands. And what did we just witness at the beginning.
“Root pruning is an important part of houseplant maintenance that involves removing part of the roots to encourage new growth and promote overall plant health,” explains Petar Ivanov, horticulturist and plant expert at Fantastic Gardeners.
Petar Ivanov is one of the company’s top performers and manages over six teams of gardeners, delivering stunning landscape results and fostering a deep connection with nature through his work.
What is the benefit of root trimming?
There are three main reasons why you might want to prune your best indoor plants.
“If your container plant is root bound or growing too vigorously for your liking, it may be suitable for a root pruning,” Petar summarizes for the first two reasons.
“Making sure your plant doesn’t become root-bound (when the roots completely fill the pot the plant is in) is essential, as root-bound plants generally can’t grow anything,” explains LeisureBench gardening expert Steve Shelton. more. This is the main reason why someone would want to prune the roots of their houseplants.
He continues, “Controlling your plant’s size and growth is also important (especially at home) because it prevents plants from outgrowing their space.” By trimming the roots, you can limit the overall size of the plant and ensure it stays proportionate to its container and your home.’
The third and final reason is to contribute to the healthy growth of your plant’s roots.
“It also helps promote healthy root growth by stimulating new growth and thus creating stronger roots overall. The healthier and stronger the roots are, the more efficient they are at absorbing water and nutrients. This in turn prevents root rot, which can “It is a major concern for houseplants.”
Steve is a passionate and knowledgeable garden expert with many years experience in the field. As Director of LeisureBench, a leading manufacturer of garden furniture, Steve has developed a strong expertise in all things nature and plants.
What will you need?
How to prune the roots of your houseplants?
If you want to try root pruning, there are some guidelines you should follow. While adopting @mariahgrows’ technique and just cutting off the bottom layer of your plant’s tied roots is one way, there is a safer way to do it as recommended by the professionals.
“To prune the roots properly, you first need to carefully remove the plant from its pot,” Steve explains. “Unscrew the root ball and use clean shears to snip off any dead or damaged roots. Then remove any roots that are too long.
Then finish replanting the plant in fresh soil.
Is root pruning necessary?
It is not necessary to prune the roots of your houseplants unless your plant is root bound, outgrows your pot or space, or shows signs of poor root growth.
How much root to cut?
“Remove a third of the total amount of root, and even out the amount of foliage and root,” Steve advises. “Be very careful not to over-prune here as this may prevent the roots from absorbing any new nutrients.”
Your pruning shears (or knife) are ready!