Revitalizing Potting Soil: 4 Incredibly Easy Steps to Reuse Soil




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Revitalizing Potting Soil: 4 Incredibly Easy Steps to Reuse Soil

Ever wondered if you could reuse your old potting soil?  It can be done!  Here are 4 Incredibly Easy Steps to Revitalizing Potting Soil!

How do you revitalize and reuse potting soil?

Use compost to refresh potting soil from last season and keep your container plants with plenty of nutrients.

If last year’s mix doesn’t look too bad, take the quick-and-easy approach and simply mix it with an equal amount of compost before putting it into your pots.

Other ways of revitalizing potting soil

If a more thorough rejuvenation is necessary, start by dumping the container into a large bin or a wheelbarrow.  Break up any large clumps of soil and remove any unwanted material. Then.

Soaking your potting soil

Soaking.  Put the used soil into a bucket with several small holes in the bottom and fill the bucket with water.

Let the water drain out and then repeat this process. After the water has drained away a second time, spread the soil on a tarp in the sun to dry.

This will help remove any unwanted pests that may be hiding in the soil or excess salts that may have built up.

Use equal parts

Equal Parts. Mix the freshly drained potting soil with an equal amount of rich, weed-free compost that has been sifted through a half-inch screen.

Feed the soil

Feed the soil.  At this point, you want to add your slow-release fertilizers.  The guideline here is about 4 tbsp of fertilizer per five-gallon container.

Also Read:  How to Grow Garlic in Pots

You can add in some generalized fertilizers, something with a balanced NPK (ie. 10-10-10).  The NPK refers to Nitrogen (N), Phosphorus (P), and Potassium (K).

If you prefer organic fertilizer, use something that is as balanced as possible.  You can also add in blood meal and bone meal for an additional boost.

Also, add in about 2-3 tbsps of garden lime per five gallons.

Add life to your soil

Add Life. For every five gallons of soil mixture, add in about 10-12 ounces of worm castings.  

Revitalizing potting soil by adding worm castings will kick start the soil with beneficial microbes.  

The microbes are what help to break the organic matter and organic fertilizers to make them readily available to your plants.

Renewed potting soil ready to use

After you are finished revitalizing potting soil, add enough water to lightly moisten the mixture; then put it aside in a plastic storage bin or cardboard box to cure for 2 weeks. During this time, the microorganisms from the compost will spread throughout the mix.

When it’s finished, your container plants will have some well-rounded and nutrient-dense potting mix to help your plants get a great start on the growing season.

Best Potting Mix For Growing:

Potting MixBenefitsOur RatingPrice
All natural ingredients
Feeds for up to 3 months
Great for all plants
Check Price on Amazon
Has everything your plants need in one bag
pH adjusted at 6.3 to 6.8 for optimum fertilizer uptake
Light, aerated texture that’s perfect for indoor and outdoor plants
Check Price on Amazon
Great soil mix for vegetables, herbs & flowers.
Includes endo & ecto mycorrhizae.
Has worm castings, kelp meal, and more.
Great for containers
Check Price on Amazon
All purpose organic potting soil
Made in the United States
Rich and loamy mix
Great for all growing applications
Check Price on Amazon

I have personally tried the different potting mixes above and genuinely like the quality and the results when using them but our favorite is the Pro Mix potting mix. I use it to start seeds for our garden, to pot up plants when they are ready to transplant, and more.

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Revitalizing Potting Soil FAQs

Here are some of the most common questions for revitalizing potting soil:

How do you rejuvenate potting soil?

You can rejuvenate your potting soil by dumping it out onto a tarp or into a wheelbarrow, start by taking out any debris and loosening the soil from the previous year.

Then add high-quality compost so that you have a 50/50 mix of old potting soil and new compost. Finally, you can add some additional soil amendments such as slow-release fertilizer to round out the nutrients in the mix.

Does potting soil get old?

Yes, potting soil can get old and needs to be replaced every few years unless you are revitalizing it. Potting soil that hasn’t been revitalized is only good for 1-2 seasons before it will need to be replaced.

If you are fertilizing your potting mix with chemical fertilizers you can add too many of the wrong nutrients and salts that can cause your potting mix to be counterproductive to plants.

Can you reuse last years potting soil?

Yes, you can reuse last year’s potting soil to grow new plants without adding anything to it but the results will be varied. The best thing to do is to refresh or revitalize the potting soil from last year by adding compost and other nutrients to it.

This will ensure that the potting soil or mix has enough nutrients to grow healthy plants.

Should I remove old roots before planting?

You do not have to remove old roots from potting soil as the beneficial microbes will eventually break down the roots and the plants will use that to grow.

The only time you will want to remove old plant roots is when a disease issue was present during the last growing season. In this case, you will want to remove the roots or completely replace the potting soil altogether.

In Conclusion

The information in this blog post has given you some tips on how to revitalize your old potting mix so that it can be used for another year. You may have noticed the price of potting soil is skyrocketing, and if you are like most people, you don’t want to spend more money but still want a great quality product.

Also Read:  From buying to growing our own

These simple steps should help extend the life of your garden without having to buy new soil each season. If all these steps seem overwhelming or too time-consuming then there are plenty of options out there for purchasing fresh bagged soils (even organic ones).

We hope this article was helpful! Take care and happy gardening!

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4 Incredibly Easy Steps to revitalizing potting soil, Reuse potting soil, potting soil, Backyard Eden,

Hi, I’m John.

John grew up on a farm where his family raised chickens, goats, rabbits, and grew a huge garden. John has a family of his own and gardens to know where his food comes from. Learn more..