“glued together gravel topping
I bought a small cactus in a very small cup topped with a glued together topping. I need to know how to get it out to transplant. It is very hard and does not come away from the cup. I am afraid if I try to chip it away it will damage the plant.
Because many Cactus and Succulents have small root structures, growers often use this method to ensure the containers make it to the store shelves.
This is not a good growing and planting method for these plants. As you have discovered it can be difficult to remove the plant from the container and even difficult to water the plants.
This glue often can be softened or removed by wetting with water. You can remove it with a small spoon once it softens. Avoid over wetting the soil and the roots.
Once you have removed it you can repot with a cactus soil mix.