GardeningTips GB

How to repot a plant

By Maha

Updated: January 8th, 2024

Learn how to give your plant a cosy new home.

Repotting a plant may seem like a simple task, but there’s a lot of little things that can go wrong throughout the process. You could damage your beloved plant through incorrect removal techniques, or it could die if re-potted incorrectly.

But, none of that needs to happen!

If you learn how to prepare your new pot properly and the repotting techniques, you’re all set.

Here’s the easy, uncomplicated way to get it done.

First things first, start by preparing your new pot.

A simple wipe-down isn’t sufficient to get your new pot ready.

Once you’ve chosen the pot you want to repot to (which should be slightly larger than the current pot and have drainage holes), clean and disinfect it thoroughly.

Why do you have to disinfect? Well, pots that have been in use before may have accumulated mineral salts or other debris that could stunt your plant’s growth.

To disinfect, soak the pot in a bleach and water solution (1 part bleach to 9 parts water) for around 10 minutes. Then wash with water and mild washing up liquid and rinse.

Next comes soaking. If your pot is terracotta, you need to soak it in water for a good few hours before you start the repotting process. This is because terracotta soaks water up as it’s a porous material – which means that it steal precious water away from the plant it’s about to house.

Final prep part is covering the drainage holes (something like a coffee filter or a simple paper towel does the trick).

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Next, remove your plant for repotting.

Time to get your plant ready for its new home.

  • Water your plant a few hours before so it’s nice and moist and you can remove it easily.
  • Remove by placing your fingers around the stem of the plant with your hand on top of the pot. Turn the pot onto its side and work the plant out gently.
  • Plant not coming out? Use a knife to cut around the soil and try again.
  • Next, prune the plant’s root ball so that fresher roots are exposed to the new soil. Clip off any hanging roots and untangle those that are left over.
Repotting is simple enough, but there’s plenty of more complex plant-related tasks that you may need a helping hand with. Find local gardening help on Airtasker.

Time to repot.

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Finally, it’s time to get the deed done.

  • Start by adding a few inches of soil.
  • Place your plant into the centre of the new pot in an upright position (make sure it isn’t tilted).
  • All in? Next, you need to fill your pot with soil around the root ball. Careful not to overfill- the soil should stop at least an inch below the top of the pot.

Finish off by watering your plant so the roots can soak up the soil’s nutrients and settle into their new home.

Need to call in the cavalry? Find local gardeners on Airtasker.



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