How to Choose the Best Soil for Your Indoor Plants

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How to Choose the Best Soil for Indoor Plants

How to Choose the Best Soil for Indoor Plants

People have been bringing the outside in for centuries, whether it’s your local garden center growing fruits and vegetables in a greenhouse or a botanist analyzing the structure of different succulent plants in a lab.

Plants have also found a place in many homes, from the most vibrant roses around Valentine’s Day to ivies of every size growing around the house. However, while indoor plants can brighten up a room and give homeowners something beautiful to look at, proper indoor plant maintenance comes with its challenges.

Many things go into properly maintaining indoor plants, but one of the most important things to get right is the soil you use. While it may seem like some plants can grow in anything, especially if you often see them in the dirt alongside many other plants outdoors, replicating the nutrient-rich nature of that dirt indoors is not so simple. In this article, we’ll discuss how to choose the best soil for your indoor plants, so that both you and your green friends can thrive.

Research Your Plants

The first step in finding the best soil for your indoor plants is to build a complete understanding of them. Not all plants have the exact needs, as some may need more water than others, while other plants require more sunlight. These requirements can also vary depending on the size of the plant that you’re nurturing, as one succulent in a small pot will require a different amount of care compared to a succulent kept in a much larger pot, for example.

Before you endeavor to take care of your indoor plants, proper education on those plants will help you start on the right foot, preventing both your plants from dying and from wasting money. Gardening in any capacity can be fun and therapeutic, but only with the right tools and knowledge will help you become an effective plant owner.

Understand Your Plants’ Original Habitat

If you’re going to choose the best soil for your indoor plants, you first have to understand the kind of environment they thrive in. If the indoor plant you’re looking to grow is kept in a consistently moist environment, it’s best to have soil that can retain water for an extended period. Likewise, if your indoor plant is usually found in a dry habitat, drier soil will keep them from getting oversaturated.

It’s also important to make sure you have a space in your home that will provide as much or as little sunlight as your plant may need. If your indoor plant is usually found in a shaded habitat, don’t leave it on a windowsill that could give it excessive sun exposure. Or, if your indoor plant is used to getting a consistent amount of sunlight, put them in a place where it will have constant exposure to the sun’s rays.

It may seem common sense at first, but some plants can be very particular about the kind of environment they’re kept in, and accommodating all of their needs will ensure the best results. Even the slightest deviation from a plant’s original habitat can cause it to have issues growing and thriving, so it’s important to replicate the soil they grow in and the external environment they’re often found in as closely as possible.

Miracle-Gro Seed Starting Potting Mix, 8 Quarts (Pack of 2), For Use in Containers
  • Specially formulated for fast root development
  • Enriched with Miracle-Gro Plant Food
  • Excellent for starting cuttings
  • Use when starting from seed and with leaf, stem or root cuttings
  • This bundle includes two 8 qt. bags of Miracle-Gro Seed Starting Potting Mix

Learn Your Plants’ Watering Needs

Once you’ve established a secure understanding of your indoor plant’s original environment, you must find out how to properly water them. Most plants are sustained by the regular rainfall they receive when outdoors, but when placed indoors, they must get regular amounts of water to replicate their usual intake.

It’s also important to ensure the water you’re giving your plants is suitable for their roots and soil. Some plants require water to be free of certain particulates or at a specific pH level, so it may be worthwhile to have your water tested for these things before using them on indoor plants. There are many at-home test kits available to gauge the cleanliness of your water, and most plumbers can conduct a comprehensive test of your water quality and determine if there are any impurities.

Learn The Difference Between Certain Soils

As we’ve stressed before, not all plants grow in the same environment, which means many of them to require unique soils to meet their specific needs. Some soils contain many microorganisms that support strong plant growth, while others are mineral-heavy and provide their benefits for water absorption and aeration. Bamboo plants, for example, thrive in soil that is loamy and drains well.

As you learn more about the distinction between certain types of soil, not only will it make it easier to shop around for what you need, but you’ll be better prepared to take care of your indoor plants in the long run.

Building the Best Potting Soil For Your Indoor Plants

Bags of Potting SoilIf you’re confident enough in your green thumb to take complete control of your indoor gardening, it is possible to build the soil for your indoor plants. When approaching this task, it’s best to maintain a certain percentage of soil-building material, as well as nutrients and aeration material.

About 60% of your total soil should be made of soil-building materials, and the other 40% should consist of nutrients and aeration material, so your indoor plants can have a balanced place to keep their roots.

Some good soil-building materials include peat moss or coco coir, while perlite and pumice make effective aeration materials for many plants.

The Convenience of Commercial Potting Mixtures

Commercial potting mixtures take a lot of the guesswork out of keeping indoor plants, as many of them have a wide range of use. They can be more expensive than soil mixtures you would make yourself, but they require much less time and effort to set up. These mixtures will often explain what plants they work best with and offer maintenance tips to ensure your plants remain in the best condition possible.

Keeping indoor plants can be a fun way to spruce up your living space, but only if you take proper care of those plants across the board. While it may seem intimidating, with the right amount of research and dedication, you can be the proud owner of many gorgeous plants for years to come.

Read More: Best Soil For Vegetable Producers in Garden

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