Houseplants are a good option for many people to buy. However, one of the most critical questions that might arise is when to repot a houseplant. Here is everything you need to know about repotting plants and more!
Steps to Successfully Repot a Plant
- Remove the plant from the current pot
- Scrap off any old soil
- Cut off any dead roots if they are any from the bottom
- Create minor cuts to the root system to increase oxygen flow
- Pour new potting mix into the brand-new pot or container
- Place the new plant into the new container
- Leave about an inch or so from the top of the soil to leave space for watering the plant
- Water the new plant thoroughly
What Does Repotting and Up-Potting Plants Mean?
Traditional repotting a plant means moving a plant to a pot of the same size, while up-potting (potting on) is when you put a plant into a bigger container. However, repotting a plant can also mean keeping the plant in the current planter but entirely changing the soil/potting mix.
What Are Some Reasons to Repot or Up-Pot a Plant?
- Want to transfer a plant to a more decorative container
- The pant can’t grow anymore due to its current pot environment
- The soil becomes difficult for the plant to absorb water and nutrients
- You’ve had the plant in the same container for a few years, and it is breaking down
How to Know When to Repot a Plant?
The signal that a plant is ready for a new container is in its roots. If you pull the plant out of its container and the roots wrap around the soil, you should repot the plant. Also, if the roots are sticking out of the drainage holes, you should move the plant to a bigger pot.
Another way to tell if a plant needs a new home is if the plant is falling over. A plant falling over may signify that there is not enough space for the roots at the bottom of the container, causing the plant to tip. The best bet is to move the plant sooner than later if you start seeing the droop.
Finally, you should look for signals that the plant is not doing well in the current environment. Signs like slow to no growth, a build-up of salt in the soil, and drying quickly after watering are things to watch out for and may require repotting to occur.
Up-Poting Size Considerations
When upgrading your current houseplant pot size, you shouldn’t go much bigger than 2 inches in diameter for regular size plants. Having a pot bigger than 2 inches from the current container increases the chance for root rot, which will become a bigger problem. Floor plants can go up to 4 inches bigger than they currently have, while tiny plants shouldn’t go past 1 inch in additional diameter.
Should I Repot Indoor Plants after Buying?
Repotting is an essential step in the growing process of plants. However, it is best to wait a bit before immediately repotting a plant when you bring it home. The best bet is to wait about one to two weeks after bringing home your plant to repot it.
The reason to hold off on immediately repotting a plant is that the plant needs to acclimate to your home’s environment. Keeping the plant in the current soil and pot is best because you don’t want to change too much at once. After a week or two of acclimating to your home, you can move it into a different pot with new soil.
How Often Should a Plant be Repotted?
A plant should only be repotted once every two to three years, no more than that. Some of the adverse side effects that occur due to repotting right away include brown-tipped leaves on the plant, a very stunted growth process, drooping of the plant’s leaves, and many other side effects that will occur.
When is the Best Time to Repot a Plant?
The best time to repot, or up-pot, a plant occurs in the spring. The other best time is about 1-2 weeks after you bring a new houseplant into your home’s environment if you decide that you want to repot the plant, that is. Finally, you shouldn’t repot a plant that is about to bloom or blooming if possible.
What is The Best Potting Mix for Indoor Plants?
An All-Purpose Potting Mix is good at absorbing and drains well. The Succulent Mix contains sand and a small amount of alkaline. An Epiphyte Mix is suitable for Orchids and other epiphytes. The last type of potting mixes to buy are specialized mixes, and they are made with specific plants in mind.
However, sometimes you might need to build your own potting mix, which requires you to get things like sphagnum, pumice, vermiculite, and many others.
Finally, one type of material you should never use is manure for indoor plants. Manure will not work well on potted plants due to the amount of heat they give off. Not to mention the number of worms and various other insects that can live inside of manure.
Conclusion – How to Correctly Repot a Plant
In summary, repotting a plant is very easy to do once you know the steps. Some basic steps include waiting about 1-2 weeks to repot a plant when you bring it home, understanding the signs that a plant needs repotting, and more. With this new knowledge, you can go ahead and try to do some repotting for yourself. Just not right away, hopefully.
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