Gilson Lyceum is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

Best Organic Soil For Indoor Plants of 2022

Philip Jackson
  Sep 28, 2022 6:27 AM

 In this review, the Gilsons Lyceum Reviews Team researched the 10 best organic soil for indoor plants to help you find the product that’s right for you and your garden. You can see some famous brands as Fox Farm, PERFECT PLANTS, Espoma, The Cat Ladies, MARPHYL, Sun Gro Horticulture, Wonder Soil, Noot, Jessi Mae.


Overview

When it comes to caring for a fickle fiddle-leaf or an overly sensitive orchid, having a green thumb isn't always easy. In spite of having everything you need, from a reliable trowel to an extra-large mister, it can be difficult to determine exactly what your plants require. The right potting soil can make the difference between a plant just surviving and one that thrives.

Fertilizer, on the other hand, is more like a vitamin for your plants, whereas potting soil is not. Potting mix, however, isn't always the same as potting soil. Potting soil, as its name suggests, contains dirt, whereas a mix never does, according to Erinn Witz of Seeds and Spades, a blog about gardening. Despite this, the terms "soil mix" and "soil mix mix" are often used interchangeably or as a brand name for the same thing.

The purpose of potting soil can be summarized as: According to estate gardener and horticulturist Brooke Medlin, the best potting soils contain peat, shredded pine bark, and superheated minerals like perlite or vermiculite to help oxygenate the soil and supply nutrients to plants. The aeration properties of peat and perlite are found in "pretty much every potting mix you'll find," she adds. "Improve drainage, encourage moisture retention, resist compaction," Witz says of the ingredients in potting soil. As a result, the soil becomes compacted, making it difficult for a plant to take up water.

Succulents, which can be prickly, may need a specialized potting soil mix, but most houseplants can get by with a generic mix. If you have a palm, citrus, or other specific plant in mind, Medlin suggests looking for a potting mix made just for that type of plant. With over 40 years of experience in the field, Bloomscape's head horticulturist, Joyce Mast, says pH, porosity, and water-holding capacity are three critical considerations. pH (or acidity), porosity (the space between soil particles), and a plant's water-holding capacity (the amount of water a plant can hold) all play a role in determining whether or not the soil is too wet or too dry for the plant to thrive.

The best organic soils for every type of indoor plant have been determined by horticulturists and plant specialists who spoke with us to help you and your plants.


Compare Products

1
  • SCORE
    9.4
    G Score

    G Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts (people love working outdoors with people and plants). It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our team based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites. Learn more

  • Brand
    Fox Farm
2
  • SCORE
    9.4
    G Score

    G Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts (people love working outdoors with people and plants). It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our team based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites. Learn more

  • Brand
    PERFECT PLANTS
3
  • SCORE
    9.2
    G Score

    G Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts (people love working outdoors with people and plants). It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our team based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites. Learn more

  • Brand
    Espoma
4
  • SCORE
    9.2
    G Score

    G Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts (people love working outdoors with people and plants). It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our team based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites. Learn more

  • Brand
    The Cat Ladies
5
  • SCORE
    9.2
    G Score

    G Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts (people love working outdoors with people and plants). It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our team based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites. Learn more

  • Brand
    MARPHYL
6
  • SCORE
    9.2
    G Score

    G Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts (people love working outdoors with people and plants). It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our team based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites. Learn more

  • Brand
    Sun Gro Horticulture
7
  • SCORE
    9.0
    G Score

    G Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts (people love working outdoors with people and plants). It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our team based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites. Learn more

  • Brand
    Wonder Soil
8
  • SCORE
    8.8
    G Score

    G Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts (people love working outdoors with people and plants). It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our team based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites. Learn more

  • Brand
    Noot
9
  • SCORE
    8.8
    G Score

    G Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts (people love working outdoors with people and plants). It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our team based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites. Learn more

  • Brand
    Jessi Mae
10
  • SCORE
    8.8
    G Score

    G Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts (people love working outdoors with people and plants). It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our team based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites. Learn more

  • Brand
    The Cat Ladies

Last update on 2022-09-28 / Affiliate links / Images, Product Titles, and Product Highlights from Amazon Product Advertising API


Reviews

Quantity 

If you're going to buy potting soil, figure out how much you'll need before you go out and buy it. Calculate cubic feet by multiplying your space's length, width, and height. Then divide by 27 to get cubic inches. You can use an online potted plant calculator to get an estimate by entering your measurements.

Soil and Mix Type 

"Most potting soil isn't really soil at all and is considerably lighter than garden soil," says Evan Davis Santi, a horticulturalist with Urban Plantscapes LLC. In fact, a "soilless" blend of ingredients is found in many commercial potting soils.

You'll need a specific type of soil or potting mix depending on what you plan to plant. According to him, all-purpose blends are most likely what you'll reach for on a regular basis. While cacti and succulents benefit from a sandy mix, the best potting soil for starting seeds is finer or lighter.

Drainage

Plants thrive in soil that is properly drained. If you're going to plant directly into the ground, think about whether or not the soil you have encourages water drainage. If you're unsure, dig a 12- to 18-inch hole and fill it with water to test the drainage. Observe how quickly the water drains after re-filling the container. Every hour, you'll need it to drain about an inch.

For most pots, "bags that are dense and wet" are best avoided when purchasing potting soil or mix according to Charlie Nardozzi, a Regional Emmy Award-winning garden author, radio host, and TV personality.

Ingredients

If the ingredients aren't listed on the bag, move on to a different brand. Styrofoam and other ingredients that are bad for plants are included in some potting mixes. In addition, you want to find out if the mix already contains fertilizer before you add your own fertilizer to it.

Specialty mix

Many brands sell specialized potting mixes, formulated for different types of plants.

Cactus Mix—Inorganic materials and grit are commonly used in cactus mixes, which mimic the natural environment in which cacti thrive. Cactus mixes drain quickly and do not retain water as a result of this.

Orchid Mix—The majority of orchids are epiphytes, which means they grow on tree trunks and other plants rather than in the ground. Since they require more room for their roots than other plants, orchids do not thrive in potting soil. Bark, clay aggregate, and rocks like pumice and lava rock make up the bulk of an orchid mix.

The specialty mixes can save you a lot of time and leave you with fewer bags to put away after repotting for these types of plants. If you prefer, you can create your own concoction, which we'll cover in more detail later!

Do you want peat moss?

Peat moss isn't sustainable because it takes a long time to regenerate, and peat bogs can't keep up with the harvest rate. The result is that peat moss is being phased out of some potting soils, such as in the UK.

Coconut coir, a sustainable alternative to peat moss, is becoming more common in potting soil mixes. If you've ever wondered what to do with all those coconut husks, you've come to the right place!

FAQS

Is potting soil reusable?

Reusable potting soil can be made with a little elbow grease. When reusing soil, for example, you'll want to remove any insects that may be present. If the plants that were growing in the soil were diseased or infested with insects, Nardozzi suggests composting the soil.

Does potting soil expire?

As far as I know, potting soil doesn't go bad. It's important to "fluff it up again before using" if the soil has been wet, says Nardozzi, because it will be compacted and less effective. To reactivate the blend, Santi advises, "you will need to add water and nutrients." Reactivating the soil with compost is a viable option.

Should I Sterilize Soil Before Using It?

There are materials out there that could potentially contaminate your plants with harmful pathogens, larvae, and seeds. Compost, recycled soil, and other home-grown materials should be treated to avoid this problem, which isn't a problem with commercial products.

As opposed to sterilizing your soil, you want to pasteurize it. In contrast to sterilization, pasteurization uses a lower temperature to kill bugs and weeds while reducing disease pathogens. Overheating perlite can also cause the release of toxins, so be careful when handling it.

Soil can be spread on a baking pan and baked at 350°F for 45 minutes to pasteurize food.

Keep the soil in an airtight container to avoid contamination.

Can I Use 100% Organic Material To Grow Super-Healthy Plants?

No. A soil's nutrient content is just one component of its overall health. The roots will be smothered if a mix is solely composed of organic material. Because it doesn't provide a stable foundation for strong root systems, it also causes water retention issues.

Conclusion

Potting soil is an important first step in successfully growing healthy container plants indoors. Consult your local nursery about the best potting mix for your particular plant and climate zone before making a purchase. Indoor potted plants are more susceptible to poor drainage than their outdoor counterparts, so always choose your potting soil based on direct observation rather than general recommendations for the best possible results.

Constantly wet soil can be lethal to potted plants, even thirsty ones like snake plants. To avoid this, keep a supply of soil-drainage amendments, such as perlite, vermiculite, and LECA, on hand for use in case of soggy soil. To revive an old bag of well-draining potting mix that has become compacted, simply add a handful of vermiculite! Investing in the best potting soil for your plant will have a far greater impact on its long-term health than simply watering it. Our selection of the best potting soils for your indoor plant collection is a great place to start.


4
4 ratings