As with most succulents, yuccas grow very slowly and seldom need to be repotted, but the process to do so is simple, and they recover quickly if placed under the right conditions.
Yuccas benefit from a light application of houseplant fertilizer each month during the summer. Just be sure to apply the fertilizer to wet soil to prevent root burn and discontinue feeding in late summer so the plant can rest during the autumn and winter months. How to repot a yucca plant ?
Types of Yucca Plants
There are nearly 50 species of yucca plants. If you’re an outdoor enthusiast, you’re likely familiar with one popular variety: the Joshua tree (Yucca brevifolia). The Joshua Tree National Park in California is filled with this species, which can grow to 40 feet tall.
The dagger plant (Yucca aloifolia), or Spanish bayonet, features tall, bushy clusters of leaves with white flowers. Spineless yuccas (Yucca guatemalensis) grow naturally as tall trees—up to 30 feet—in Central America. Many indoor yucca plants look similar to a palm tree or dragon tree (Dracaena draco), though they are not actually related.
Soapweed yucca (Yucca glauca) grows as individual shrubs up to four feet high with thin, spiky leaves. While it looks comparable to soapweed, bear grass yucca (Yucca filamentosa) grows more similarly to Adam’s needle, being two of the few variants in this family that have adapted to extremely cold temperatures.
Yucca Plant Soil
Yucca plants don’t need highly fertile soil to thrive, a regular potting soil will do them just fine. The main quality the compost needs to have is that it is well draining. As it’s a drought-tolerant plant, it will not grow well if it’s left sitting for too long in soggy soil.
We recommend choosing a compost like John Innes potting soil and mixing it with 1 part sand and also a few extra pebbles to improve the drainage just that little bit more.
How to repot an indoor yucca plant
Things You Will Need
- Container with drainage hole
- Potting soil mix for succulents and cacti
Water the plant the day before repotting. When you’re ready to repot the yucca, fill a slightly larger pot about one-third or half full with a mixture of three parts peat moss and one part sand.
Remove the yucca carefully from the pot and loosen compacted roots with your fingers. Place the plant in the new pot and adjust the soil level so the plant is seated at the same soil depth as it was in the previous container.
Fill in around the roots with potting mix and pat the mix lightly to remove air pockets. Water the plant deeply and let it drain thoroughly.
How to repot a large yucca plant
Repotting larger yucca plants can be difficult, so larger plants can be refreshed with new potting soil by digging out the top 2 inches of the container and adding new soil. During a typical repotting, you can remove the yucca plant from its container and increase it by one container size, always using fresh potting soil.
How Often Should I Water A Yucca Plant?
According to what we found, you should only water your yucca about one to two times per month. Yuccas have a spring and summer growing period, so extra watering during that time is fine, depending on your plant. We also found that yuccas go into dormancy during the winter months, so less water is a good idea through that season. Ideally, you should have a watering schedule for your yucca plant and check its soil regularly for too much or too little moisture.
Signs of Over or Under Watering
The first sign that your Yucca Plant has been overwatered is yellowing or collapsing leaves. Let the soil dry out as much as you can before adding any more. If there are no improvements over the next week you may need to check the roots.
Root rot is another problem commonly associated with the Yucca Plant. Leaving this untreated for too long is fatal to the plant. When you check the roots, they should be pale in colour. If they have started to turn brown or dark in colour then your plant is showing signs of root rot.
The next common issue in Yucca Plants is trunk rot. The plant is able to store plenty of water in its trunk as a survival technique in the wild to avoid dehydration. This means the more water you add to the compost, the more the plant will try and store. If the trunk stays wet for too long it will feel spongy in texture and start to rot.
Make sure you always feel the moisture levels of the soil before watering again. If it feels moist, leave it another couple of days. If there’s one sure way of killing a Yucca Plant, it’s to overwater it.
The ideal emplacement for a yucca
Under our climates, yucca adapts well to living indoors in our apartments and homes.
It grows best when surrounding temperatures hold around 65 to 72°F (18 to 22°C) and requires very good light, even some direct sunlight.
Behind a window, though, best to avoid too much direct exposure to the sun which might dry your yucca up.
Best to place it near a window facing to the West so that it would still have a good deal of light.
If you live in a house that is quite dark, avoid purchasing yucca because it won’t cope well with the lack of luminosity.
Propagating Yucca Plant
There are a few ways to propagate a yucca plant. If your yucca has outgrown its space, cutting the plant’s stem in half and repotting the pruned top portion may lead to a second plant. However, propagating from divisions or pups (offshoots) is typically a more successful method of creating new plants. Here’s how:
Propagation is best done in fall. The plant’s growth slows in fall, causing less damage to the plant. Remove a mature yucca plant from the pot.
To propagate by division, separate the plant’s rhizomes, and plant in new pots.
To propagate by pups, wait until pups are green. When pups are green, they have enough chlorophyll manufacturing capacity to survive on their own. Pale, whitish pups are too young to remove, as they rely on the parent plant for survival.
Using a sharp knife, slice off the pup from the parent plant, making sure to include a portion of the parent’s root with the pup attached.
Replant the pup in a new pot with fresh soil.
Water well and keep the soil moist (but not soggy). Cuttings should quickly root in a few weeks, and begin producing leaves shortly thereafter.
Pruning Yucca Plant
As the yucca tree gets older (and potentially too tall for your space!), cut it back anywhere along the trunks. Take the tops and lay them off to the side for two weeks. Once the cut sites on the tops have scabbed over, stick the tops back in soil and they will root. The original tree base will also put off two to four new arms.