How to Repot Indoor Plants


Repotting a plant is as important as watering and feeding it. It provides the plant a fresh, healthy environment and gives its roots a chance to stretch out. In most cases, an indoor plant will require repotting once every one to two years. Still, don't take this in stone. A vigorously growing plant can quickly outgrow its container and require more frequent repotting to avoid becoming rootbound. On the other hand, a plant with a very slow growth rate may need repotting every three to five years, especially as it matures.

Step 1

Select a new potting container that has a diameter that is about 2 inches larger than its current container. Ensure that the pot has a good drainage system.

Step 2

Repot the houseplant in the spring and when the roots begin to grow from the drainage holes. Extract the plant from its current container and gently remove the excess soil from the root system. Trim away any dead, dying or wilted roots from the root system with sharp, sterile pruning shears or scissors.

Step 3

Line the bottom one-third of the new container with a layer of nutrient rich soil. Position the plant in the center of the container. Fill the container until the soil reaches the original level around the rootball. Press the soil firmly but gently with your fingers to secure the plant's upright position.

Step 4

Irrigate the plant until the excess water flows evenly from the drainage hole to promote a moist environment. Delay irrigation for indoor succulent plants. Allowi these plant three to four days to rest before irrigating them. Irrigate all newly repotted plants with tepid water to avoid root shock.

Step 5

Return the potted plant to a warm location that receives at least four to six hours of full to partially shaded sunlight, based on the plant's individual needs.

Things You'll Need

  • New potting container
  • Pruning shears or scissors


  • Texas A&M Horticulturist Extension: House Plants
  • Purdue University Cooperative Extension: Indoor Plant Care
  • Plant Care: Repotting House Plant Essentials
Keywords: repotting indoor plants, indoor plant repotting, repotting my plants

About this Author

Charmayne Smith is a business professional and freelance writer. She has worked in management for successful organizations since 1994. Smith draws on her business background to write articles, and her work has appeared in a variety of online outlets. She holds a degree in business from Cleveland State University.