20170227A.jpgMany authors insist you should repot your houseplants in the spring (late February through April) and that is indeed an excellent period for doing the job, but you don’t need to limit yourself to those 3 months. In fact, you can repot a houseplant whenever it is in “active growth” (putting out new leaves, roots, stems or flowers).

Just about the only time when it’s best to leave your plants alone is when they are dormant or more or less dormant, usually in late fall and winter. You see, when you repot a plant that isn’t growing, it just isn’t ready to handle the sudden influx of fresh moist soil and added minerals and that can lead to root rot.

So, for many plants, consider repotting from late February through late October in the Northern Hemisphere, but not in November, December, January or early February.

That said, there is an exception. plants that grow all year long can be repotted in any season. You’ll find that many plants growing under artificial lights will grow all year and you can therefore repot them whenever you feel like it!

For a mini-course on repotting, read Repotting Boot Camp.

Larry Hodgson is one of Canada’s best-known garden communicators. He has notably been editor-in-chief of HousePlant Magazine, Fleurs, Plantes et Jardins, À Fleur de Pot and Houseplant Forum magazines and is currently the garden correspondent for Le Soleil and radio garden commentator for CKIA-FM Radio. He has written for many garden publications in both the United States and Canada, including Canadian Gardening, Harrowsmith, Horticulture, Fine Gardening and Organic Gardening. He also speaks frequently to horticultural groups throughout Canada and the U.S. His book credits include The Garden Lover’s Guide to Canada, Complete Guide to Houseplants, Making the Most of Shade, Perennials for Every Purpose, Annuals for Every Purpose, and Houseplants for Dummies, as well as nearly 60 other titles in English and French. He is a past president of the Garden Writers Association (now Garden Communicators International) and the winner of the prestigious 2006 Garden Media Promoter Award offered by the Perennial Plant Association. He resides in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada.

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