When To Repot Houseplants

The majority of houseplants can thrive for years in the same container. However, some quickly expanding species, like philodendron or pothos, may outgrow their container and require repotting every few years. When the roots of a plant start to protrude through the drainage holes, it is usually time for a new pot. If water flows straight through the pot and out the drainage holes whenever you add moisture, that is another warning indicator.

Of course, some plants, like orchids and snake plants, don’t mind small spaces, but even they eventually require a new location as their roots entwine.

In general, the spring and summer when the plant is actively growing are the best times to repot your houseplant. Although it’s best to do it at least three to four weeks before bringing the plant indoors for the winter, you can also transplant plants in the fall. Your plant should adjust to its new container while it is still enjoying its summer break.

Check the roots of the plant after gently removing it from the pot. It’s time for an upgrade if they are tangled, tightly encircling the inside of the pot, or if a lot of the soil is missing. Choose a container that is an inch or two wider than the one your plant is now in.

Pick the new pot wisely. Clay (terra-cotta) pots have a lovely appearance but are porous, causing the soil to dry out more quickly. They are ideal for plants like succulents, cacti, orchids, ponytail palms, and snake plants that prefer quick drainage. In order to prevent them from sucking the water out of the soil, it is best to soak them in water for a few hours before planting. Use plastic containers with tropical houseplants like ferns, African violets, anthuriums, and spathiphyllum because they retain soil moisture longer. However, regardless of the kind of pot you use, make sure it has a hole in the bottom to let extra water drain out. Use a pot that is approximately two inches wider than the one your plant is currently in.

Use a high-quality commercial potting soil made for indoor plants; some soil blends are even available for particular plant species, like cacti or African violets. Useless to utilize garden soil. The ideal soil should be fluffy and light, with plenty of sterilized organic matter and compost to help retain moisture. Cheap potting soil may be excessively heavy and retain too much moisture, so it’s not always a good deal.

Soil should be added to the pot until the plant’s crown (where the roots meet the stem) is at the same height as it was growing before. To remove air pockets, gently compact the dirt around the roots and water. After planting, include a saucer to collect runoff. At this time, don’t feed your plants. In fact, you might want to wait until early spring to fertilize if you are repotting in the fall. Additionally, remember that a lot of potting soils already contain fertilizer, so you shouldn’t worry too much about feeding your plants right immediately.

What factors determine when to repot a houseplant?

Although repotting your plants may seem difficult, we have some advice to help you succeed.

First things first: repotting refers to replacing the soil or potting mix, not necessarily the planter that it is now in. The nutrients in new soil are new. This is fantastic news if you adore your present planter, but it’s also okay if you want to get a new one or your plant has clearly outgrown its existing container. Try to choose a planter that is no more than 2″ larger in diameter for tabletop planters and no more than 4″ larger in diameter for floor planters when choosing a new one. Your new container might just need to be an inch larger if you’re repotting a really tiny plant! The size of your plant’s new home is crucial because we tend to give it more water in larger planters. Small plant in large planter with loads of soil and water results in unintentional dying. You want to give your plant some additional room to expand in the coming months rather than drowning it in soil.

Repotting should be done on average every 12 to 18 months, depending on how quickly the plant is developing. Some slow-growing plants, like cactus, can live for years in the same pot with only a soil resupply. The best time to repot your houseplants is typically in the spring, at the beginning of the growing season.

If you notice one or more of these indicators, you’ll know it’s time to report:

1. The grow pot or planter’s drainage hole(s) are being penetrated by roots 2. The plant’s roots are almost pushing it out of the planter. 3. The plant’s growth is significantly slower than usual (different than winter dormancy) 4. The plant is quite top-heavy and is prone to falling over. 5. The potting soil dries out the plant faster than before, necessitating more frequent waterings. 6. The plant’s foliage is larger than its present planter by more than three times. 7. The plant or planter has a pronounced salt and mineral buildup 8. You haven’t repotted your plant in more than a year.

What you’ll need on hand is as follows:

Of course, whether it is a new or existing factory.

The container you’re using for planting (if reusing a container, make sure to thoroughly rinse the inside first)

new potting soil

If your planter does not have a drainage hole, use lava rocks or something similar.

If you’re touching a plant like a Ficus elastica that has unpleasant sap, wear gloves.

a water bottle, a sink faucet, or a watering can

a newspaper, sheet for pots, or surface that is simple to clean

1. Take the plant out of the pot or planter it is currently in. Your plant will slide out of its current container if you grip it firmly by the stems or leaves while turning it sideways and tapping the bottom of the container. With a few little tugs on the stems’ bases, you might need to assist it a little.

2. Take the roots out. Use your hands to gently loosen the plant’s roots. Make sure to keep the thicker roots at the base of the leaves and cut any extra-long threadlike roots. Unbind the roots as much as you can and give them a trim if your plant is root-bound (the roots are growing in very small circles around the base of the plant).

3. Get rid of the old potting soil Remove at least a third of the old potting soil that is encircling the plant’s roots. You should give your plant new potting soil or mix because as it grew, it may have consumed all or part of the nutrients in the old mixture.

4. Include fresh potting soil Fresh potting soil should be added to the empty planter, and it should be packed down to eliminate any air pockets. Before adding the potting mix, layer the bottom of the planter with lava rocks or something comparable (rocks, gravel, etc.) if it has a drainage hole. The idea is to carve out areas for the additional water to collect in and flow away from the roots of your plant.

5. Include a plant. Make sure your plant is centered before placing it on top of the newly added layer of soil in the planter. Then, pour extra potting soil all around the plant to secure it. You want the roots to have room to breathe, so avoid packing the planter with too much soil.

Water and pleasure. The potting soil should be evened out, then water well. It’s important to remember that a plant that has just been re-potted doesn’t require fertilizer.

What time of year should you repot houseplants?

In order for a plant’s actively growing roots to have enough time to grow into newly added potting soil, the optimal time to repot it is in the spring. There are a number of indications that a houseplant is pot-bound.

Can indoor plants be potted in the winter?

As they mature, plants prefer to be potted up into bigger containers. More dirt can feed the root systems in larger containers. Years of growing in a pot can cause plants to become root-bound, which can result in death. The opportunity to repot indoor plants in the winter allows the ardent gardener to avoid frostbite on their thumbs!

If you notice roots on the surface of your pots, that is a sign that your plant needs to be replanted. Another indication is the presence of roots emerging from the drainage holes at the base of your containers. Another indication that your plants are root-bound is slow growth. Look to check if the roots are wrapping around the pot’s edge. Repotting your plant is necessary if the roots are swirling around the rootball.

Make sure the pot you choose matches the decor in your house and is the right size for the plant. If you’re repotting, avoid using large pots. Generally speaking, you should make the present container two inches bigger. The roots may rot if the new pot is too large and can contain too much water. To allow water to permeate the soil, ensure that the containers include drainage holes. Choose a saucer that matches the new pot to protect your carpet or hardwood flooring.

As the planting media, use a premium potting soil blend that has been fertilized. For the majority of indoor plants, the potting soils from Espoma Organic are good choices.

Use the following tips to make repotting easy:

  • Remove the plant from its current container. To dislodge the plant, you might need to run a knife or trowel along the side.
  • If the roots are coiled, pull them apart or, if they are very root-bound, trim them.
  • After placing the plant in the center of the new pot and filling it with quality potting soil, add soil to the bottom of the pot.
  • Water deeply to settle the dirt and wet the roots.

It is not unusual for the plant to go into shock after repotting. While the plant heals, try to keep it out of direct sunlight for a few weeks and maintain a consistent moisture level in the soil.

When is it not advisable to repot plants?

Turn the plant sideways, carefully hold it by the stems or leaves, and tap the bottom of the plant’s present pot until the plant slides out. To remove the plant, you might need to give the base of the stalks a few gentle tugs.

“With your hands, loosen the plant’s roots, Marino advised. ” Unbind the roots as much as you can and give them a trim if your plant is root-bound, which is indicated by the roots growing in extremely close circles around the base of the plant.

The plant can get rid of unneeded roots by trimming any dead, mushy, discolored, or excessively lengthy roots with sharp scissors or pruning shears, according to Mast. In order to prevent the spread of bacteria between the roots, she also suggests wiping the blades with rubbing alcohol in between each snip.

In addition, Mast advises against repotting during periods of harsh weather, such as a heat wave, as this might stress the plant.

She advised watering your plants a day or two in advance to ensure that the roots are well-hydrated and free from root shock.

Never repot a plant that has wilted from being underwatered. Repot after hydrating.

What occurs if plants aren’t repotted?

You have therefore joined the trend of indoor plants. You’ve added a few to your workspace and home. Bravo and good luck to you! Literally, plants are good for you and help you stay healthy, happy, and connected to nature. Congratulations from the eco-warriors at your Good Earth Plant Company.

Only the appropriate potting soil needs to be added to your plant containers. Picture: Creative Commons License, SweetLouise

You may have had your plants for a year, 18 months, or even 24 months. Now what? When advancing to the next level of plant care knowledge, one of the most frequent queries raised by plant owners is when to repot their indoor plants.

Fantastic inquiry at the ideal moment. Repotting indoor plants that require additional space to spread their roots and thrive is best done in the spring. Your plants respond naturally to the change in season by beginning to grow when the amount of daily sunlight increases and the temperature rises.

However, if your plant grows too large for its pot and has crowded roots that lack space to spread, the result may be a stunted, stressed-out plant. If it receives insufficient nutrients or water, it may suffer and drop leaves or even perish. You don’t always have to replace your plant’s container when you repot it. Giving the plant new potting soil is the primary goal of repotting. Fresh nutrients in the soil will feed your plants. But for it to grow, your plant may require more space.

How can you be certain? Here are some indicators to watch out for:

  • The drainage hole at the bottom of the container is showing roots sprouting out of it.
  • The plant itself is being raised out of the container due to the roots, which are becoming so thick inside the container.
  • Your plant’s growth has slowed down or ceased altogether.
  • Your plant has a top weight that makes it easy to topple over.
  • Your plant need more regular watering because it dries out soon after being watered.
  • On the plants or the container, you can notice salt or mineral buildup.
  • Inside the container, the shrinking of the soil is visible.

Repotting is typically necessary every 12 to 18 months for plants. There are certain exceptions, including cacti or succulents with sluggish growth.

There are great options and something for every taste if you choose to get a new container. Be imaginative! You’ll find some fantastic ideas and trends if you read my blog article from the TPIE show earlier this year.

Avoid choosing a container that is too large! The bigger, the worse. Choose a pot that is only marginally larger than the container in which your houseplant was first placed. For a smaller plant that might be placed on a counter, aim for three inches more in both diameter and depth; for a larger plant that might be placed on the ground, aim for up to six inches.

Verify the plant has effective drainage. Make sure to reduce the watering if you’re transferring a plant whose roots require more frequent watering. Overwatering might harm a plant in a new container with a lot more dirt. You don’t want to destroy your plant in its new home by being kind to it.

You’ve decided on a hip new container, and you’re now prepared to transfer your plant. Water your plant well the day before you intend to repot it. Additionally, you might want to pre-moisten the fresh potting soil.

When transferring your plant from its original container, go slowly and gently. If the object is root bound and firmly fixed in place, patience may be required. Tap the container’s bottom while tilting the plant sideways. Tap the sides and roll the container. Start lightly at the container’s sides if you need to loosen the plant. Here, damp earth can be your ally. Do not pull the plant by the stalks. If necessary, use gravity to your advantage by turning the plant upside down, but be cautious because soil may spill out.

Examine the roots once the plant has been removed from the container. Image credit: CC/Gardening Solutions

Examine the roots once the plant has been removed from the container. Try to gently disentangle any tangled roots and give them some room if the plant has packed roots. In those gaps, you want dirt to fill it. If you need to do a little trimming, that is acceptable and even be beneficial. Avoid harming the plant’s stems or leaves by moving slowly.

The previous potting soil doesn’t have to be completely removed. Fresh potting soil should be added to the planter, leaving between one third and half empty. Purchase the proper potting soil from a nursery or garden center, please. It ought to have an indoor or outdoor use rating. Use only dirt from your garden or yard.

On top of the first layer of brand-new potting soil, place the plant. You might want to add more dirt or take some away so that your plant is seated in soil that is approximately an inch below the rim of the container. Don’t completely fill the container. You need some space so that water can slowly seep into the container.