Repotting your house plants is a regular part of owning and maintaining them and is beneficial for a couple reasons. It gives your plants space to grow bigger and replenishes their nutrients! In today’s blog, we will walk you through everything you will need to know about re-potting your plants.
When should I repot my house plants?
1. When your plants have outgrown their current pot
- You will know your plant has outgrown its’ pot when the roots are growing out of the top and/or bottom of the current pot, or if they are toppling over the pot and have a hard time staying upright.
- Some plants grow faster than others so you may find you need to re-pot yearly or every few years depending on the species.
2. If your plants have lived in the same pot for several years
- Some plants can live several years in the same sized pot. However, they may have used up all the nutrients in the soil.
- A fresh soil change will give your plant nutrients to keep it growing happily.
3. If your plant obtained a severe pest infestation
- If you are battling a bug infestation that just won’t seem to go away, there is a chance that the pests are living or laying eggs within the soil.
- Removing all the soil and washing your plants’ roots may help you better maintain the break-out and give you a better chance at battling the infestation.
Steps for repotting your plants:
- Carefully remove the plant from its current pot
- Gently massage the roots to remove the old soil
- Line the new pot with fresh soil before adding the plant and topping it off with soil. Don’t forget to make sure you are using the right soil for your plants! Ex. cacti and succulents require a well-draining succulent soil mix, etc.
Pro tip 1: When sizing up your pot, do not increase the pot diameter by more than 2 inches. A good ratio of soil and roots is beneficial to the health of your plant. If the pot is too big that means that there will be more soil. More soil than roots = soil that stays wet longer which can cause issues down the road such as mould, root rot or even fungus gnats that breed and thrive in damp soil.
Pro tip 2: Since your plant is out of the pot, now is a fantastic time to check in on the health of its roots! Carefully inspect your plants' roots while they are bare and trim off any dried or blackened roots with a sterile pair of scissors.
What time of year is best to repot my house plants?
Springtime is the optimal time of year to repot your plants. This is when your plants come out of winter dormancy and is the beginning of the growing season. Have you ever noticed your plants looking sad throughout winter and coming back to life in the spring? This is why! Repotting during the growing season will help your plant bounce back from the stress of repotting much faster.
With that said, there are times when you will need to repot during dormancy season, such as aforementioned pest infestations, or any other sudden issues, like if your pet accidentally knocked over your plant! If you ever find yourself having to repot during dormancy, allow the plant some time to recover before you water it again.