Containers and Transplanting: The Basics

Containers and Transplanting: The Basics

By Genevieve Mills

Containers and Transplanting: The Basics

Hooray! You have a new plant, let's show it off in a cute container!

There are a couple ways to present your plant in a container--keeping it in the grow pot, or direct planting it.

Keep it in the Grow Pot

For ease and happiness of the plant, we recommend keeping your plant in the grow pot in which you receive it. If your grow pot is too low, you can use a "riser" to bring the grow pot up to just below the top of the decorative pot.  This can be a layer of gravel, a piece of wood, or a piece of styrofoam. Put a plastic saucer inside the container to catch water, but just make sure that water doesn't sit in the saucer.  When looking for a decorative container: find something that is 1-2" in diameter bigger than the diameter of your grow pot. 

Direct Planting

If you want to plant directly into a decorative container, it is best to have a container with a drainage hole (and a saucer to catch drips) or a container with interior drainage. If you have a container with no drainage option fill it with an inch or two of gravel to act as a drainage reservoir for excess water.  Once complete add a little soil to get the top of the root ball level with the top of the container, then back fill with remaining soil. Be cautious with watering, since excess water will just stay in the container. Error on the side of less is more until you get a feel for the plant's needs.  


If your plant gets too big for the original grow pot, you can transplant to larger grow pot or container. Most interior plants prefer to be a little snug in their containers, but if roots are growing out the bottom drainage hole, around the top of the soil level, or splitting the pot (snake plant roots can do this!), it's time to size up.  Look for a grow pot about 2" in diameter larger than the old pot.

Add well-draining potting soil to the bottom, gently remove the plant from its old pot and set in the new, making sure the top of the soil/crown is lined up with the top of the pot.  Add additional soil around the root ball as needed, give it a good drink of water and let the water drain out, then you're good to go!

Time to go shopping! Find a new decorative container to fit your newly transplanted friend, and replace your smaller decorative container with a new plant!

We’re Here to Help-

If you have a specific question about your plant, email us at: for Help.