In the garden

some tid bit about House plants here

 

House plants repotting

Early spring, just as new growth begins, is an ideal time to repot, but a plant that needs repotting should be done anytime of the year, except when actively flowering.

 

 

annual flower

 

 

 

House plants may be repotted for two reasons; either the plant has outgrown its pot and needs a larger one, or the potting mix needs replacing but the plant can be returned into the same pot. Young plants in small pots need repotting more often than older, larger ones. If water runs quickly through the soil into the saucer and the plant needs watering more often because the soil isn't retaining moisture, it could need a larger pot.

 

Early spring, just as new growth begins, is an ideal time to repot, but a plant that needs repotting should be done anytime of the year, except when actively flowering. Choose a pot one size larger than before (e.g. an eight-inch pot if the plant has outgrown a six-inch one). A plant in a pot too large cannot absorb moisture from the soil quickly enough to allow air into the soil and root damage may result.

 

Most plants do well in ceramic, clay or plastic pots. Unglazed clay pots allow the soil to dry out more quickly, which is preferable for cacti and succulents, and allow gaseous exchange. Soil in plastic or glazed ceramic pots stays moist longer, which is appropriate for ferns and ivies. With careful watering, a plant will do well in any type of pot. Choose a pot with drainage holes to allow excess water to drain from the soil. If you use rocks in the bottom of the pot, be sure a rock isn't plugging the drainage hole, and cover the rock layer with a piece of landscape fabric or fibreglass screening to prevent soil and roots from entering the space between the rocks. Be sure water doesn't remain standing in drainage saucers.

 

Most potting mixes are combinations of peat moss, vermiculite, perlite and/or sand. Cacti and succulents need extra sand added to improve drainage (one part sand to one part potting mix is suitable). Other house plants such as Dracaenas, Palms, or Citrus that need well drained soil should have about one part sand added to three parts potting mix. When repotting remove what soil comes off easily, without damaging the roots; and add new soil in the bottom and the sides, placing the plant at the same depth it was previously. Leave 1/2 inch between soil level and the rim of the pot to make watering easier.

 

Water house plants when the soil in the pot is as dry as it should be for that plant. Some need to become completely dry (e.g. cactus), some must always be moist (e.g. azalea), and most should allow the soil surface to partially dry before watering. Water thoroughly, so that a small amount trickles through the drainage hole, indicating that the whole root ball has been moistened, and remove any water remaining in the saucer. Water again when the soil has become as dry as it should be for that plant. Inserting a finger into the soil will indicate if the plant requires watering. Soil pulling away from the side of the pot also indicates a need for water. Watering too often is a very common problem, and can cause root rot, so it is important to check each plant, and not water them all because one plant needs a drink! Do not fertilize until the plant has shown some sign of new growth. At that point, your plant has settled nicely into its new pot and should continue to thrive.

 

 

annual flower

 

annual flower