This week I’ve really been getting on top of my plant care + it feels good. I did a bit of a plant-pot-swap-around with some of my outdoor plants to free up some pots to use for this. I’m low on potting supplies so have just used what I’ve got for now… during this batch of planting I used up all my perlite, orchid bark + compost so I’ve had to order some to do a bit more! Because of this, I concentrated here on plants that were actually showing signs of suffering from being well-overdue a re-pot.

To reiterate what I’ve said in previous posts, it’s best not to re-pot your plants if they don’t need it (it’s stressful for them!)— wait until there are roots circling around the bottom of the pot or beginning to grow out of the drainage hole. If you are unsure, it’s fine to take your plant out of the pot to check. Generally plants grow better when slightly root-bound as it can promote growth.

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My lovely pothos n’joy is one of those staples in my plant collection… consistent variegation, really nice foliage + generally fuss free. But I can sometimes take these easy-going plants for granted…it has definitely  been a little unloved over the last few months + grown really straggly. I had a good chat on my instagram recently about giving your plants a haircut — especially during Spring + Summer when they are actively growing. Vining plants such as pothos respond well to regular pruning + even though it can take a while to get the confidence to take the scissors to your plants, it’s worth it.


I can’t actually remember how long it has been since I repotted this! I went up one pot size as these grow best this way. The photo below shows how much I cut off — a healthy amount I think whilst retaining the nice shape of the original plant. If you look closely there are also some silvery ann cuttings in my hand… more on this next.


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This plant was also in the straggly gang + looked quite tragic really! One or two of the stems had grown really long + it was looking bare around one side, so I also pruned this right back + I’m going to root some of the cuttings to make a little plant. This is a good example to show that very long stems can bring with it small leaves, as the nutrients have further to travel to get to the ends. This means that many of the silvery heart shaped foliage is ‘petite’ but I did not want to discard them —  if I can get them rooting in water I think I will make a cute little pot with all them together!



I find the colouration of these leaves so beautiful… as you can guess from the name, this cultivar has stronger silvery hues splashed across the leaves than a regular scindapsus pictus which good amounts of light can enhance further. In the photo below, some of the leaves on the top right are my favourite:


Here are some of the cuttings rooting in water —  I like to leave them callus over for a day or two before water propagation sometimes, but it’s not essential. It can help to stop the ends getting soggy so I judge how the cuttings look when I’ve snipped them. With these, I’ll admit I cut them all up + sort of forgot about them over the weekend!

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It wouldn’t be a repotting session without a pilea because they have got to that stage where they are multiplying like my spider babies! The smaller of the two here had been in a small pot for ages + the potting mix had really dried out in a bad way. I loosened the roots + gave it a slightly bigger pot to grow into. The larger of the plants was hard to re-pot as I’d become quite attached to it sitting in a macrame hanger I had made specifically for the pot it has been in for close to a year. A bigger pot means I’ll have to make a different hanger for it + put it in a new pot too. But I might train this little one on a bit so that it can take the other plants’ place before too long!


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This was a plant I had been avoiding repotting because its just so awkward + spiky! These strap like zig zags have little white hairy spikes which can be sharp, so it was a job that required my gloves. Also called a fishbone cactus, these plants don’t have a big root structure as they are epiphytic (meaning they grow off the surface of other plants in their natural habitat) so I am careful to not jump up in pot sizes with this one.

I just went up one terracotta as you can see in the photo above left. I love this light style with this plant — it really enhances the green I think! After potting I gave it a shower to clean any debris off the plant + watered it in. I need to give this plant a bit of an inspection, it does get mealy bug from time to time but I will get my rubbing alcohol swab ready + methodically work my way around all these stems. In terms of potting mix here, I used cacti + succulent potting mix with added perlite + orchid bark to keep the structure nice + airy.

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For the last in this potting session was another I had been neglecting —  my zz plant! It recently threw out two little stems after moving it to a brighter position which jolted me to give it some attention. It’s important to note that whilst these plants are often sold as ‘low-light’ options, they certainly will not thrive in these conditions. They are slow growers but a brighter spot can help speed things up a little.

repotting11LOOK AT THOSE ROOTS! repotting12

The photo above shows the root ball after loosening —  it’s good practice to do this to allow them to settle into their new home well. If they have been contorted by the plant pot, they can sometimes retain this shape even after potting for a long time + just sit in the new pot surrounded by new potting mix… I always encourage the roots by tousling them with my fingers gently. Here is is after repotting —  I like to shower my ZZ every few weeks to keep those leaves lovely + glossy:

There we go, that’s all for today. Hopefully my potting supplies will arrive soon + I will check in with an update soon.

Hope you enjoyed that potting table update,

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Posted by:Laura / House Plant House

3 replies on “Repotting diaries #4: n’joy, silvery ann, pilea, fishbone cactus + zz plant

  1. Pothos are so easy to root in the right conditions; but because I just plug mine into pots without the right conditions, many do nothing. I know it is a bad habit, but they seem like they should be easy no matter what. I really should take it more seriously and either cover them to contain humidity, or root them in water.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know what you mean, I have an abundance of glass jars so for me its easier to stick them in water on my shelf! It does feel like one extra step, but rooting seems more successful in my conditions this way at least 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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