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By Notepad

Suffolk/Norfolk border, United Kingdom Gb

Hello - long time no see! Can anyone help me regarding a mother in law's tongue please. I inherited it from - guess who - my mother in law. My husband and I rescued it from near death but it's looking great now. Trouble is the roots seem too shallow to support all the growth and I think it would rather spoil it to put sticks in and tie it up any more than it is already. I am loathe to try to plant it deeper - any ideas please.



Possibly needs a larger pot, if you've not repotted in the last couple of years - a deeper pot means deeper roots and it'll be more stable with those. You can also split it if its large, though recommended time for that is Spring.

4 Aug, 2011


Thanks Bamboo, we'll try that.

4 Aug, 2011


I've got one of these, an ancient thing which I got from my mother-in-law and I was told not to repot until the plant was so pot-bound, it pulled the pot out of shape. The pot mine is in was originally circular but it's now been pulled into an oblong. It's at least ten years since it was repotted and the roots to the new parts of plant run across the top of the soil. Must get round to repotting it soon!

4 Aug, 2011


Thanks for replying Sheilar. Do you mean to say that you don't have a problem with the plant toppling over? Mine is so top heavy. Perhaps your pot is deep enough to have encouraged really strong root growth which would bear out what Bamboo said.

4 Aug, 2011


Mine is 3' 3" tall, in a 7" diameter pot which is 7" deep and it has no problem staying upright. It has 11 stems in the pot which are evenly spaced and seems to balance the pot. As regards 'splitting' the plant, I tried this and was unsuccessful. I did manage to grow another full plant from a leaf cutting. I chose a new stem and cut about 3" off the top with a sharp knife, put this into compost and hey presto, a new plant developed. Hope this helps.

I'll put a photo on at a later date, not now though as I'm off to bed! Good night.

4 Aug, 2011


Mine's in a 6 inch deep pot, and is the same height as Sheilar's - but 18 months ago, despite the 4.5 inch deep pot not being bent out of shape, my plant started to fall over as yours has done, Notepad - I repotted into the 6 inch pot, taking off one of the side growths into a separate pot at the same time, and its been upright ever since. Though I suspect it will need an even larger pot by Spring next year. The side growth, which oddly wasn't variegated, grew on into a separate plant.

5 Aug, 2011


Many thanks. I'll let you know the outcome.

8 Aug, 2011

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