How to Repot Houseplants

How to Repot Houseplants

Spring is the time to repot and refresh

Tending to your outdoor gardening and containers is not the only Spring activity to tackle. This is the season to repot those houseplants and give them a refresh. Addressing the indoor and outdoor varieties will improve the health of the plants and prevent disease from overtaking them. Spring also causes plants to grow quicker, requiring larger containers and more nutrients.

Remove and Massage Roots

Gently remove the potted plant, loosening the roots if they have adhered to the container. Grasp the base of the plant around the soil to slide out. Do not aggressively pull or you will damage the root system. Next lightly massage the root ball to free from their winter coils. The roots need to be loosened allowing them to continue growing and absorbing air, nutrients, and oxygen.  

Place the Plant in Its New Home

Select a pot that is 1-2 inches larger than the original pot. Ensure it is clean has drainage. If your pot does not have drainage hole(s), transplant your plant into a plastic pot with sufficient drainage, then into the new container. Another tip is to avoid too large of a pot as excess soil tends to hold water and the plants will become waterlogged.

Fill your new pot approximately one-third of the way with fresh potting soil. Place the plant in the pot allowing the base of the stem ¼”- ½” below the top. Add or remove new soil to adjust the height. Place handfuls of new soil around the plant, being mindful to fill all the empty spaces inside the pot. Gently pat down the soil to firmly place the plant.

Water, Feed, Light

Transplanted plants require ample water right away. Water you plant(s) slowly and let it all soak in. Water again until the pot feels heavy, and water is running out of the drainage holes. Let it sit for 30 minutes and pour out the excess water not absorbed in the dish or plate the pot is sitting.  As it grows roots to fill the soil, it will need watering more often.

Watering is one of the trickiest aspects of plant parenting. As the soil dries out, a pot begins to feel lighter. If a pot still feels heavy, even if the surface of the soil appears slightly dry, it’s generally not yet time to water. Every plant is different. Some plants like to dry out almost completely in between watering like cacti, succulents, ZZ plants, snake plants, and peace lilies. Spider plants, pothos, and philodendrons like only the top few inches to dry out. Most ferns like only the surface to dry out.

Evaluating the feel of the soil and the weight of the pot can help determine the watering cadence your houseplants prefer. Note each time you water to learn the length of time each plant likes to go between watering. Remember, the timing can change between seasons and humidity levels, indoors and outdoors.

Fertilize your plants as they are actively growing in the Spring and Summer. Please follow the instructions upon the fertilizing product you choose. The application frequency can vary from every two weeks to once every 3-4 months. Place your plants in the recommended sunlight range per their species.

Visit our website for more information on how to care for your plants. Here’s to repotting and being able to enjoy healthy houseplants year-round!



  • Davey Jones

    Excellent article! I’m sure it will come in handy. The tips about watering are especially useful.

  • barbara chang

    I love the news letter and planting ideas.

  • Elaine Wells

    Can I bring my houseplants to you for repotting! My smaller plants could move to the bigger pots but I have at three plants that need bigger pots than what I have so will have to buy new pots anyway! Please!
    Elaine Wells

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