When to Repot Houseplants

Since I was a kid, as you can see in the picture below, I've loved playing in the dirt. With spring starting to arrive here in Florida, and not that far away for your part of the country, it's time to start thinking about getting your hands dirty. I'm sure that some of your beautiful houseplants are ready to be repotted. But which ones? Below is a checklist of what to look for as signs that a plant may be aching for a larger pot.

Joey working in the dirt

1. Growth that is slower than normal - As days lengthen and warmer weather returns, all plants inside and out should begin to flush with new growth. If you have some plants that aren't, or if the growth seems slower than normal, it may be time for a larger container.

2. Leaves are off-color - If the leaves should be a rich, deep green (or a rich any other color), but look sort of sickly and yellow and you can't find signs of other issues, the plant may not be able to take nutrients up properly and will benefit from repotting in fresh soil.

3. Always seems dry - The rule of thumb for watering most houseplants is to water as the plant dries out. However, if you are watering and the plant always seems thirsty, like it isn't taking up water properly or if you notice water just running through the roots and not being absorbed by the soil, that's another sign that your plant needs to stretch its feet.

The reason for repotting is simple. Over time, the great soil you used to plant in is gradually depleted of nutrients and slowly washes away through a pot's drainage holes. Many times when you take an old plant out of its pot, it is all roots and no dirt. When a plant gets like that it can't take water and nutrients up properly and it starts to decline. When any of those symptoms exist, find your favorite houseplant soil, a new container or two and get ready to get your hands dirty. In next week's newsletter, we'll feature our how-to-repot video to get you ready for repotting season.

Joey and Kim, Owners of The Kerby's Houseplant Shop

Joey and Kim, Owners of The Kerby's Houseplant Shop


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