The Value of Soil

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Indoor plants are more than just appealing home accessories. Palms, spider plants, orchids … Our green roommates lend a cozy atmosphere to decorate our rooms. This improves indoor climate by producing oxygen, increasing air humidity, and, maybe most importantly, filtering dust and pollutants from the air. To unfold their full potential, indoor plants need one thing more than anything else apart from the right location: high-quality substrate. But what makes a high-quality soil mix?

Here are some things you should consider as you choose your potting soil for your indoor plants.

Indoor plant needs

Indoor plants have varying preferences for soil acidity and alkalinity. Therefore, you should come knowing your indoor plant’s preferred soil pH value. A pH7 value is neutral on a scale of 0-14. Higher numbers are alkaline soils, and lower numbers are acidic soils.

The type of potting soil you choose should provide your indoor plants with plenty of support to keep it from falling over, and should be capable of storing water and nutrients for the plant’s roots while still providing enough drainage to keep the pot from filling with water. This drainage also provides air circulation, giving the roots enough oxygen to keep growing.

Potting soil varieties for indoor plants

You should also have a general understanding of what’s actually in the various options for plant mixes. Take a look at the contents and ingredients on a bag of the potting mix before you purchase them. Here are some of the most common ingredients:

  • Peat moss: This is the most common and basic ingredient in most potting mixes you’ll find in stores. Using semi-decomposed bog plants that they ground up into a coarse powder. Some types of indoor plants like especially moist soil environments, like African violets, begonias and ferns, making peat moss-based potting soils ideal.
  • Bark: You’ll probably notice chunks of tree bark as you work with potting soils. These pieces help with draining and keep the soil from becoming overly compact.
  • Perlite: Perlite looks like white puffs of Styrofoam. These air pockets improve drainage and better regulate the release of water in the mix.
  • Sand: Plants need drainge in when placed in pots, sand can be used to improve drainage. Especially sandy mixes are perfect for indoor plants like cacti and succulents, which prefer smaller amounts of water.
  • Vermiculite: This material is made from a variety of mineral deposits, that helps to maintain air circulation in the mix. It can absorb several times its weight in minerals and water, and releases them slowly.

The ideal potting soil for you

Most plants are left on the same substrate for two to four years before being re-potted. This means that the structural stability of the potting soil is very important. The substrate should not slump as time passes, but continue to provide reliable support to the plant in the future. Good drainage of water is also a must as excessive water causes the plant roots to rot and provides ideal conditions for those nasty little flies and other pests.

That’s why you should never put too much water in at once and, to be sure, you might want to check the drip tray for excessive water a few minutes after watering.

Purchase Imbali’s very own Organic Potting Soil as it has excellent drainage and contains compost, making it high in nutrients!

For more information about what you should consider when buying potting mix, contact us today.