With its shiny, plump leaves and pleasant shape, a jade plant is one of the most familiar and treasured plants. Although they are usually considered to be indoor plants, growing jade plants in an outdoor container is one of the best ways to enjoy them. Over time, jade plants can become large and top-heavy, and they may need to be repotted. This may become a challenge, but with patience and tender, loving care, the jade plant will be healthier than ever.
Be sure the jade plant needs to be repotted, because jade plants do well if they're slightly root-bound. If the soil is shrinking away from the inside of the pot, if the water runs straight through the container, or if you see a mass of white roots through the drainage hole or on the top of the plant, it's time to repot.
Water the jade plant lightly the day before you plan to repot it. This prevents shock to the plant and makes it easier to remove the jade from its container.
Choose the next container carefully. For large outdoor jade plants, a container with a wide, sturdy base is important so that the weight of the jade won't cause it to be blown over in a strong wind. Although any material will work, a clay pot will be heavy, will hold moisture longer, and will keep the soil cooler in hot weather. Select a container only one size larger than the current container. Ensure that it has good drainage in the bottom.
Put a small amount of commercial potting mixture in the new pot. An all-purpose potting mixture or a potting mixture formulated for cactus will work.
Hold the trunk of the jade plant with one hand, and carefully slide it out of the container. If the jade plant doesn't come out easily, thump the side of the container with the palm of your hand, but don't pull on the stem. If the jade plant is very large, ask a friend to help you, so that you prevent the chance of breakage.
Set the jade plant in the new pot, and check that the plant will be at the same soil level as it was in the old pot. Add more potting mixture to the bottom of the pot, if necessary. When the jade plant is at the correct height, finish filling the container with potting mixture.
Allow the soil of the jade plant to dry out after repotting. Once the soil feels dry to the touch, water the jade thoroughly and let the water run through the drainage hole. After that time, revert to your usual feeding and watering procedures.