How to repot houseplants in time for spring

A woman repotting an indoor succulant

Get your indoor plants ready for spring with this easy to follow repotting guide. - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Give your houseplants a bit more legroom and keep them healthy with this step-by-step guide on how to repot them by Dobbies Garden Centres.

Are the roots of your houseplants growing through the drain-hole? Perhaps the water is no longer absorbing? 

Even the lowest maintenance plants require a repot - either annually or at least every two years - and here’s how to do it.

Remove plant from current pot 

Turn your plant sideways, hold it gently by the stems, and tap the bottom of its current pot until the plant slides out. You might need to give it a couple gentle tugs on the base of the stems.


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Loosen the roots

Loosen the plant’s roots gently with your hands. Prune off any threadlike roots that are extra-long, just make sure to leave the thicker roots at the base of the foliage. If your plant is root bound, unbind the roots as best you can and give them a trim. Make sure the new container is roughly two to four inches bigger in diameter, so it has space for new root growth. For non-root bound plants repot using a planter the next size up. 

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Remove old potting mix 

Remove about one third or more of the potting mix surrounding the plant. As it grew, your plant removed some of the nutrients in the current mix, so you will want to give it fresh mix if you are potting it anyway.

Add new potting mix 

Pour a layer of fresh potting soil into the new planter and pack it down, removing any air pockets. If your new planter doesn’t have a drainage hole, layer the bottom grit or similar drainage material before adding the potting mix.

Add plant 

Set your plant on top of the fresh layer of mix, making sure it’s sitting in the centre, then add potting mix around the plant until it is secure. Be sure not to pack too much soil into the planter, as you want the roots to be able to breathe. 

Water and enjoy 

Even out the potting soil on top, and water well.

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