Repotting a green plant is necessary as soon as its growth slows down, its leaves turn pale, or its flowers are less abundant. Here’s how to repot in the best of conditions.
When should you repot your green plant?
Repotting your green plant is necessary if:
- Plants grow little and their new leaves or flowers get smaller. Despite regular fertilization, the nutrient medium for your indoor plants is used up by watering. At the same time, the substrate gradually disintegrates into dust, which hinders the air and water circulation.
- The volume of the roots takes up all of the available space in the pot. As a result, the roots can become tight and often come out of the drainage hole. Repotting is then welcome to restore some space and food.
- The volume of the parts above ground is out of proportion to that of the roots.
What’s the best time?
Spring (March) is the best time to repot. Most green plants come out of a winter dormancy period and resume their growth. At this time of year the roots will resume their activities and settle more easily in a new growth medium.
Repotting is often possible as early as February, as soon as the beginning of recovery can actually be observed, for example the formation of young shoots on the nodes or the ends of the stems.
For plants that restart later, be sure to repot by May or June before moving your green plant into the garden.
Should you repot a green plant every year?
Annual repotting is helpful in keeping your green plant growing evenly. However, some slow-growing or older houseplants can be content with more frequent pot changes.
A new container is sufficient in them every 2 to 3 years, sometimes more.
What kind of cultural funding should you plan?
Most green plants like to grow on a reasonably even nutrient medium, ie 2/3 consisting of soil for green plants (rather light), but cut with 1/3 good soil. Garden that holds moisture a little longer. The soils used pure, without mixing them with the earth, are a disaster. They dry up way too quickly.
An exception : Plants that are easy to care for, such as succulents and cacti, require a light and, above all, very well-drained nutrient medium. Little or no land. Instead, when repotting, prepare potting soil mixed with sand or a large amount of pozzolana.
What should be used to replace peat?
The peat reserves are running out
The use of blonde or brown peat in potting soil raises increasing questions. It is true that these pot mixes are light weight and hold water well. The peat acts like a sponge that soaks up water and gradually releases it to the roots of the plants.
But peat is also a fossil material that is created by the accumulation, compression and decomposition of plants. This slow formation process takes between 1,000 and 2,500 years: This means that it is an inherently little renewable resource.
Alternatives to using peat
For all of your repots, you can replace a peat-containing potting soil with mother soil that is half mixed with:
- an earth made of dead leaves
- coconut fiber
- maritime pine bark potting soil for the plants that support it (acidophiles)
- a floor based on wood fibers: its water storage properties are similar to those of peat.
Can I repot in a plastic pot?
A plastic pot is ugly and really bad for the health of your houseplant! Plastic is waterproof and therefore blocks the gas exchange between the roots and the air. It also prevents water evaporation from the side walls. You need to have a light hand when watering so as not to risk too much water, especially in winter.
Nothing beats a terracotta pot. If you find it ugly, you can just line it up with a stylish colorful flower pot.
How do I repot a green plant step by step?
Before you start, collect the necessary tools and materials: the new pot, gravel for the drainage, all the elements that you need to mix to create the new nutrient medium (depending on the plant: potting soil, garden soil, heather or plant soil, compost , Sand). , Pozzolana, etc.), a watering can and a planter.
If you’re doing this indoors, consider protecting your table with an old tablecloth. Here are all the steps for a good repot:
- Start preparing the plant by removing any yellow or dry leaves and dead branches.
- Then remove it by holding it by the base of the pole.
- Put a few pebbles, potsherds, or clay balls on the bottom of the new pot to prevent the hole, useful for draining excess water, from quickly becoming clogged with soil or roots.
- Pour a few inches of new substrate on the gravel bed.
- Place the root ball in the center of the pot and adjust its final position by wedging it with some substrate.
- Fill the empty spaces with the mixture while keeping the root ball and plant upright. Make sure there are no gaps and that the growing medium is evenly distributed around the plant.
- Tamp your fingers around the root ball. Remember to keep the substrate only a few inches from the edge of the pot to make watering easier.
- Finish with copious watering to remove air bubbles that can interfere with small roots’ activity.
Where should the green plant be placed after repotting?
As close as possible to a window that faces north or west. With a few exceptions, avoid direct sunlight to limit leaf burn. Put sails on the windows to filter out the sun when you have no other choice.
Consider grouping green plants on a piece of furniture or a shelf to create a more favorable climate around them: They like to live in community! And to keep them healthy, remember to dust the leaves regularly.