I decided to transplant my avocado trees today and I'm glad I did because the root systems on both of the trees looked like they were screaming out for more room. Transplanting a tree is definitely a project for the outdoor...unless you want dirt all over your carpet.
First I tipped the tree over on it's side and started stomping around the base of the pot in a circle to loosen the dirt.
Shimmy the tree out by holding the rim of the pot and pulling on the base of the tree. If you can't easily tug it out don't force it and rip the roots. If you're afraid of hurting the plant you can also run a knife around the edge of the pot in a circle and that should do the trick. You may also have to extricate roots that have seeped out the bottom of the pot. Try not to break those roots when transplanting the tree.
These roots are insane!
You can clearly see the shape of the pot. I'm so sorry avocado trees! I promise you will be in the ground soon!
I didn't break apart the roots because they were so compacted. Generally if the roots are looser than this you can break the roots apart to help with the transplant transition. (Don't break the roots or cut the roots, just massage them apart from each other).
Next you want to measure your dirt so you don't under fill or over fill the container.
Fill the container with dirt:
And put the tree in the new container and fill it with dirt.
Here are my avocado trees post transplant in much bigger containers. Hopefully the next time I transplant a tree it will be into the garden in my new home.