Healthy roots are an essential part of any plant, and they are particularly important for an indoor plant, which is at a higher risk for developing problems. Without healthy roots, your Pilea can't thrive and will eventually wither away and die. The following guide will help you understand why Pilea Peperomioides needs healthy roots to thrive.
Healthy roots help your plant grow strong
If you have ever looked at a Pilea plant that was in less than excellent health, then you may have looked at a Pilea with unhealthy roots.
Healthy roots are one of the essential factors required for plants to grow strong; healthy roots can (in a plant that is otherwise being properly cared for) ensure vibrant, normal colorization, healthy-looking leaves, and beautiful blooms.
Healthy roots store energy for later use
Healthy roots are capable of storing away energy for later use through photosynthesis.
This stored energy can be used to feed a plant and is particularly necessary during the wintertime or other periods where a plant may need an additional boost of energy.
This stored energy can only be processed by roots that are healthy; if roots are not in excellent shape, they will not be able to save and later use the energy to help the plant.
Healthy roots help plants recover from stress
Healthy roots are an important element in reversing the problems associated with stressed plants.
Many things can stress your Pilea: overwatering, pests, disease, too much or too little sunlight, or even being moved around too much.
When a Pilea plant has healthy roots, these roots can help the plant recover its equilibrium and go back to being healthy and sturdy. If the roots are not healthy, however, then the plant will be much less likely to recover from stress.
If your Pilea becomes too stressed, it may experience wilting or falling leaves, discoloration, and other issues that may not be reversible.
Healthy roots stimulate microorganisms
Healthy roots are unique because they stimulate microorganisms within the soil. These microorganisms provide benefits to plants and can help them grow and thrive.
Signs of Unhealthy Roots
Here are the most common signs that something is not right with your plant's roots. If you notice any of these symptoms on your Pilea, then it's time to check out the roots and inspect the situation further.
If you do notice that the roots aren't healthy, you must act quickly to resolve the problem and restore your plant's roots to their proper health.
Wilting, damaged and/or yellow leaves
If you notice that your Pilea leaves aren't up to their normal standard, the culprit may lie in the roots. When a plant has unhealthy roots, it's incapable of delivering the proper hydration and nutrients throughout the plant.
This will eventually result in leaves that are discolored, damaged, and wilting. The leaves may also fall off the plant entirely, depending on the nature of the issue.
Mushy, brown roots
Roots are meant to be a lighter color, typically white or a light tan; roots are also meant to be firm and sprawling.
If your Pilea's roots are mushy or brown (or both) then this is a serious sign that something is wrong with the roots. In most cases, the problem that causes this symptom is root rot. Root rot needs to be taken care of immediately if you want to save your plant.
If it's growing season but your Pilea hasn't been producing any new growth in a while, that might be a sign that something isn't right with the roots.
How to Keep Plant Roots Healthy
If you want to avoid common root health problems, then you will need to keep your Pilea's roots as healthy as possible.
Overwatering your plant can cause the roots to become flooded, which will significantly increase the risk of root rot as well as the development of mold. Make sure that you only water your Pilea when the top inch of the soil is dry.
Inspect your Pilea regularly
Make sure you inspect your plant regularly for signs of root issues, such as discoloration and discolored roots. The sooner you can spot a problem, the more likely it is that you can resolve it.
Give the roots enough room to grow
Pilea's roots must have enough room to grow if they are going to stay healthy. Never overcrowd your plant into a small pot or planter, and routinely upgrade the size if the plant continues to experience growth.