How to Recharge, Rejuvenate and Reuse Old Potting Soil

Do not throw away old potting soil. Then what to do with old soil from pots?  Know how to reuse old potting soil after you sterilize, recharge, rejuvenate and activate old potting soil. If you are growing plants in containers, then you may be changing its soil after a couple of years. What do you do of the old soil? Do you throw it and use the new potting soil?
Do you know, you can reuse your old potting soil after recharging, revitalizing, amending and improving its quality naturally.

Reuse old potting soil
Reuse old potting soil

You will be saving lots of money in buying new potting mix if you recycle the old potting mix.

The recycled old potting soil may be better potting soil if you take the right steps as shown on this post. You will save money on filling containers with good potting soil every year.

I will show you how to revitalize, recharge and re-use old potting soil in container.  The enrichment will improve soil quality, and turn bad soil into good soil. You will save money on filling containers with good potting soil every year.

How to Reuse Old Potting Soil

If you do not change the potting soil, the soil's nutrition will be depleted in a few years, the soil may also become compacted. In such a situation the water will not reach to the roots properly and the growth of the plant will be reduced.
Follow the following steps to revitalize the soil to reuse it in container.
  1. Take Out the Plant: Tap the pot from the outside all around to loosen the soil. Take out the plant carefully without damaging the roots.
  2. Remove the Old Soil: Using a fork, carefully remove the soil without damaging the main root. You may trim the thin roots.
  3. Break the big chunks of soil. We will re-use this soil after its rejuvenation.
Repotting in amended soil
Repotting in amended soil, do not damage the main root

Soil Amendment / Rejuvenate

  1. Solarization: This step is very important. Leave the soil in sun for 2-3 days to kill any bacteria, fungi, insects.
  2. Put 1/4th of this soil in garden bed or compost bin and add the same amount of new potting mix.
  3. To add nutrition and moisture retaining capability, add some cow manure or compost in the soil.
  4. If the soil is clay type, mix some river sand or perlite to make it free-draining.
  5. You may add some bone meal to provide phosphorus for stronger roots.
  6. You may mix some slow release fertilizer also.
  7. The recharged soil is now ready.


  1. Half fill the pot with the improved soil and repot the plant. Back fill the pot with more soil. 
  2. Press the soil to remove air pockets. Put a layer of mulch and water well.

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