Anthurium Plant Care: Learn About Repotting Anthuriums

anthurium repot
anthurium repot
(Image credit: v_zaitsev)

Anthurium is a delightful tropical plant with glossy foliage and bright, heart-shaped blooms. Anthurium plant care is relatively straightforward and repotting anthurium plants is a task that should be done only when required. Read on for the when's and how's of repotting anthuriums.

Best time for Repotting Anthurium Plants

So when is the best time for repotting an anthurium plant? A rootbound anthurium should be repotted as soon as possible. If you aren’t sure if the plant is rootbound, look for the following clues:

  • Roots circling around the surface of the potting mix
  • Roots growing through the drainage hole
  • Wilting foliage, even after watering
  • Water runs straight through drainage hole
  • Bent or cracked container

If your anthurium shows signs that it’s severely rootbound, don’t wait to repot, as you may lose the plant. However, if your plant is just beginning to look crowded, it’s preferable to wait until new growth emerges in spring.

How to Repot Anthuriums

Prepare a pot one size larger than the current pot. As a general rule, the diameter of the new container should be no more than an inch or 2 (2.5-5 cm.) larger. Cover the drainage hole with a small piece of mesh, a paper towel, or a coffee filter to keep potting soil from escaping through the hole. Water the anthurium well a few hours before repotting; a moist rootball is easier to repot and much healthier for the plant. Try to use a potting soil similar to the plant’s current potting mix. Anthurium requires a very light, loose medium with a pH around 6.5. If in doubt, use a mixture such as two parts orchid mix, one part peat and one part perlite, or equal parts peat, pine bark, and perlite. Place fresh potting soil in the new container, using just enough to bring the top of the anthurium’s rootball to about an inch (2.5 cm.) or less below the rim of the container. Once repotted, the plant should sit at the same soil level it was situated in the original pot. Slide the anthurium carefully from its current pot. Tease the compacted rootball gently with your fingers to release the roots. Place the anthurium in the pot, then fill in around the root ball with potting soil. Firm the potting soil lightly with your fingers. Water lightly to settle the soil, and then add a little more potting soil, if needed. Again, it’s important to situate the top of the anthurium’s root ball at the same level as its old pot. Planting the crown of the plant too deeply may cause the plant to rot. Place the plant in a shady area for a couple of days. Don’t worry if the plant looks a little worse for wear the first few days. Slight wilting frequently occurs when repotting anthuriums. Withhold fertilizer for a couple of months after repotting an anthurium to give the plant time to settle into its new pot.

Mary H. Dyer

A Credentialed Garden Writer, Mary H. Dyer was with Gardening Know How in the very beginning, publishing articles as early as 2007.