How to choose a houseplant potting soil
Choosing a potting soil for your houseplants can be tricky. We have spent a long time in garden centres staring at a wall full of soils and never really known which to choose. The list of ingredients can be difficult to understand and you need to know which plants require what. But don’t worry, we have spent a long time trying out various different potting mixes to see which are the best for all kinds of houseplants. Below you’ll find our favourite 5 – you can’t really go wrong with any of them so we hope this will help make that decision a little easier.
As with all potting mixes though we have to add a disclaimer – although these are all high-quality soils there is never a guarantee that there won’t be the odd bug in the mix. That’s nature for you! In order to keep your plants pest free, ALWAYS check the potting mix thoroughly before giving to your plants. Pests are easy to spot as they will move and will be visible to the human eye so all it takes is a quick once over.
Miracle Gro Potting Mix
This potting mix is great if you are after good quality, value for money soil that will work with the majority of houseplant types (but not succulents or cacti). It has good drainage but not enough perlite and coarse ingredients to be suitable for plants which hate moist soil.
The great thing about this mix is that it will feed your plants for up to 6 months so you don’t have to worry about fertilising too much after repotting. Our plants have really loved it and we have seen a lot of new healthy root growth. As with any soil, check it for pests (particularly fungus gnats) before repotting your plants but you shouldn’t have too many issues.
Succulent and Cactus Mix
This potting mix from The Succulent Cult is one of our favourites for cacti and succulent plants that need a well-draining mix. Overwatering is the number 1 cause of death for houseplants so getting a mix that is as rich in perlite as this one will really help you avoid root rot.
The mixture not only gives good drainage but also helps aeration in the soil to give your plants all the oxygen they need! A must-have for cacti and succulent lovers.
Miracle Gro Houseplant Mix
This is the slightly premium option and worth every cent. After all, you want your houseplants to have the best home! A great thing about this mix is that it’s less prone to gnats as the ingredients are balanced slightly differently from the standard mix. So it’s definitely worth investing a little more into this mix to prevent the dreaded pest infestation. Buying a new houseplant will not only cost more, but it can be quite emotional seeing them slowly taken over by pests.
Another reason we really love this potting mix is that it’s designed for just houseplants. A lot of the potting mixes out there can also be used for outdoor plants which mean they aren’t always exactly right for potted plants. But when we tried out this mix with some of our plants, they really loved it!
Miracle Gro Succulent Potting Mix
You might be able to tell by now but we are definitely fans of Miracle Gro and we use a lot of their products for our own urban jungle. This succulent mix is great for plants who need a well-draining mix as it contains perlite and other ingredients which help drainage and aeration and will prevent your succulent from going mushy.
It’s super important when you use this mix to have a saucer or planter that will capture the excess water and allow you to throw it out. This will stop your plant sitting in puddles of water at the bottom of the pot. It also contains a little bit of fertiliser so you don’t need to worry about that for a while.
Keep your succulents happy with this mix from Miracle Gro, available on Amazon here.
Cactus and Succulent Potting Mix
If you are after a super well-draining mix then this is the one you need to get. It’s made up fo 25% perlite which means the risks of root rot are drastically reduced (so long as you don’t consistently overwater, of course). It’s also a great potting mix for any plants with rhizomes as they are also prone to rot.
It comes in various sizes so check the best price on Amazon here.
Written by Joanna Turner