As a plant grows, its roots take up more and more space while the
amount of mixture in the pot steadily diminishes. Once this occurs,
plant growth will slow and the plant will eventually become unhealthy.
Permanent house plants generally will require repotting once a year
until they reach a mature size. Outdoor plants grown from seed will
need to be repotted several times within the first few months until
When to Repot:
Taking a plant out of the pot and looking at the roots is the best way
to tell if it is time to repot. To remove a plant from the pot, first
make sure the soil is thoroughly moistened, then:
|Place your hand on
top of the pot, with the main stem between two fingers.
Turn the pot over and gently tap the rim against the
edge of a table or tap your hand against the base of the
pot. After a few taps, the root ball should loosen and
the pot can be lifted away. If not, then run a knife
blade around the inside of the rim.
Carefully examine the root ball. If fresh root tips are showing all
over the surface, the plant is ready to be repotted. If the roots are
densely matted or are forming a thick spiral around the base, repotting
is overdue and should be done immediately. The best time to repot is at
the beginning of the plants' growing season, unless the plant is
severely root bound and showing signs of distress during the growing
season, in which case it should be repotted immediately. Never move
plants when they are in a dormant or rest period.
How to Repot:
Repotting is messy, so give yourself plenty of room on a surface that
can handle exposure to water and soil. Choose a new pot that is a size
or two larger than the existing pot. You'll want 1 to 2 inches under
the roots and 1 inch on the sides and top for the fresh Hoffman potting
Check root ball for dead roots and thick
root spiral around the base and remove using a sharp
knife. Place enough Hoffman potting soil in the bottom
of the pot to position the top of the root ball 1 inch
below the rim.
Add Hoffman potting soil around the
sides and work it in with a stick or your fingers,
compressing it lightly. Then add 1/4" of potting
soil as top dressing.
Top dressing is an alternative to repotting when the plant is rather
large and it is not feasible to repot into a larger container.
|Gently scrape away
the top inch or two of existing potting soil with a
spoon or small trowel. Remove as much soil as possible
without exposing major roots. Refill the pot with fresh
Hoffman potting soil to the original level.
Most decorative containers have no drainage holes, making it difficult
to grow plants in them. In these containers it is a good idea to use
double potting. To double pot: put gravel in the bottom of the
decorative container. Set the plant in a proper size clay or plastic
pot inside the decorative container. Then fill the sides between the
two pots with Hoffman Sphagnum Peat Moss. This method allows for good
drainage, reduces the frequency of watering and still makes an
Why Your Choice of Potting Soil is Important:
Soil is the key to a plant's ability to properly absorb air, water and
nutrients the key to life, the key to being a successful gardener. A
good soil mix must provide the proper balance of air and water to the
plant. To produce healthy plants, the soil mix must act as a reservoir
for plant nutrients, hold water, and provide aeration and anchorage. A
good growing media does not happen by accident, it is designed for the
environment that the plant will be growing in - Commercial Greenhouses,
inside homes, outdoors - All require different mixes. Top soil straight
from the garden is not a good choice for potted plants. By nature, soil
is designed to drain over several feet of depth, not the several inches
contained in a pot. Additionally, top soil can contain weed seeds and
What to Look for when selecting Potting Soil:
There is a wide range of potting soil choices in the marketplace today,
from low cost, low quality dirt in a bag to higher cost, highest
quality scientifically researched and formulated Peat based mixes.
Don't be fooled into thinking that dirt is dirt and any soil will do.
Invest in a quality soil as an insurance policy to help protect your
house plant purchases.
Peat-based potting mixes, since their introduction in the 60's, have
set the standard in both commercial and homeowner mixes. These soilless
mixes contain ingredients which are sanitary and free of harmful salts,
weeds, and plant pathogens. The primary ingredient in peat-based mixes,
which out performs all other material, is CANADIAN SPHAGNUM PEAT MOSS.
It's unique cell structure helps regulate moisture and air around the
plants roots, creating ideal growing conditions. Canadian Sphagnum Peat
Moss is a key ingredient in the complete Hoffman Potting Soil line. For
the home gardener, Peat based potting mixes are the safest, most
convenient and fool proof mixes available today.
Always check the soil bag to see what the ingredients are that make
up the mix. With bags that either do not list any ingredients or are
vague and say "may contain some of the following", you do not
know what you are getting. Look for soils such as Hoffman, which
clearly states every ingredient on the bag and carries a money-back
Hoffman Potting Soils are uniquely designed to meet the needs of the
home gardener, providing good water holding capacity to help the plant
survive infrequent and irregular waterings, balanced with proper
aeration to help reduce the risk of over watering, the number 1 killer
of house plants.