If you are fond of gardening or love to indulge yourself in planting activities, then you must be aware of various gardening terminologies. Why? Because it is necessary to learn the needs of plants and give them that. The plant needs sunlight, water, and food. The food plants eat is not as we humans eat but in the form of potting mix and fertilizer.
What is Potting Mix?
Potting Mix is a soil-less ingredient prepared for the nurturing of the plant. Many gardeners prefer DIY all purpose potting mix to be prepared at home because it is cheaper and can be prepared in larger quantities for all your plants at once.
Whether you are seeding, cutting roots, potting up houseplants, or hanging baskets of your favorite purifying plants, potting soil is the ideal growing medium for containerized plants. All the best DIY potting mix for indoor plants have a few things in common:
They are easy to handle
The best DIY potting mix for indoor plants are the ones that are prepared with the help of pine barks.
They are better at draining than average garden soil.
They are lighter than soil in weight.
Each plant requires a different potting mix. Thus, it is necessary to do thorough research and conclude what will work with all your plants. The best DIY potting mix for indoor plants should be dense enough to keep plants from tipping over, should retain water and nutrients, but also allow water and air to flow through easily.
Benefits of a Potting Mix:
Creating anything home by yourself will surely save you a few bucks that you can invest. However, making the best DIY potting mix for indoor plants will provide you with various benefits which you will not reap if you order the best potting mix online from or buy from the store:
Potting mix bags have a higher price tag attached to them. The premium potting mixes are quite expensive and can drill a hole in your pockets. Making the potting mix at home is not only simple but it can make the activity of gardening a cheaper one. You need not require costly ingredients; you can research and get the ingredients at a reduced rate if you buy in bulk.
Preparing potting mix at home will save your time from going to the store. Also, you do not need to spend hours on making this mix, you can store enough quantity and, make a new one when required.
The ingredients present in the potting mix available in store are harmful. If you choose to prepare the potting mix at home, you can control the outcome and negate the non – required chemicals from your DIY all purpose potting mix.
What ingredients are required to prepare the best DIY potting mix for indoor plants:
Sphagnum Peat Moss: The peat moss is a key ingredient to making any DIY all purpose potting mix and is available on the market at a negligible rate. It is well-draining but is low in nutrients, hence limestone is added to balance the nutrients.
Coir Fiber: It is a by-product of the Coconut Industry and is rich in nutrients that the peat moss. Hence, it should be added to the best DIY potting mix for indoor plants. Often sold in packets, coir fiber is considered by many to be more sustainable than sphagnum peat moss.
Perlite: Perlite is a mined, volcanic rock that is lighter in weight, sterile to the best DIY potting mix for indoor plants. It is easy to find in nurseries near to your homes.
Vermiculite:Vermiculite adds to calcium and magnesium in the potting mix and it will also add to the capacity of water holding. Plants require water and the normal soil may not be able to hold much water but this best DIY potting mix for indoor plants with Vermiculite will hold more water.
Sand: This ingredient will benefit the Cactus plant and other succulents. They add weight to the pot and are perfect for plants that don’t require much water.
Limestone: The Limestone is useful to balance the pH balance which is imbalanced due to the presence of the peat moss. These ingredients complement each other and balance the nutrients out.
Fertilizer: The natural DIY all purpose potting mix fertilizer can be made at home with the help of plant and animal – product and other remnants of fruits and veggies. Next time when your pet poops or you have waste veggies, do not throw them away, use them as fertilizer.
How to make a potting mix at home?
You can make the DIY all purpose potting mix with the help of above – mentioned ingredients.
Here is the recipe for flowers and vegetables:
You need 6 gallons of peat moss or coir fiber and 1/4th cup of lime to balance the nutrients. For 6 gallons of pat, you also need 4.5 gallons perlite and 6 gallons of compost. Mix everything in a bucket and add 1 to 2 cups of organic fertilizer that is available in stores/nurseries near you. This can be used for every flower and vegetable that you choose to grow at home.
Recipe for seeding:
To make the best DIY potting mix for indoor plants is not different from flowers and vegetables. You must gather 2 gallons of sphagnum peat moss or coir fiber, 2 gallons vermiculite, 1-gallon coarse sand and 1 cup of lime to balance the peat moss. Put them all together and your potting mix for seeding is ready. If you make an extra quantity, then store it to use again.
Recipe for succulents and Cacti:
For preparing the potting mix for the Succulents and Cacti, you need 3 gallons of coir fiber (for a change you can replace the peat moss with coir fiber, 1-gallon of perlite and vermiculite each, 2 gallons of the coarse sand because these succulents do not require a higher amount of water to survive. And lastly, ½ cup of lime (if you are using peat moss). Put them all together and you have a potting mix for your Cacti plant and other succulents.
Recipe for houseplants:
Houseplants are different from flower plants, vegetable plants and succulents. Hence, their potting mix is different from theirs as well. Thus, for the potting mix of house plant, you need at least 2 to 3 gallons of peat moss which can be measured using the container, 1.5 gallons of perlite, 2 small cups of sand, lime if you are using peat moss and ½ cup of homemade organic fertilizer. Throw them all together and you have yourselves a potting mix for houseplants.
Different types of potting mixes:
Sustainable potting mix:
Peat Moss is the key ingredient in preparing a sustainable potting mix. However, coconut fiber is a more sustainable option because that way the infiltration process of water will improve. Also, it is easily available, is cheaper than peat moss and is chemical-free. Hence, it will not damage you or your plants.
All purpose potting mix:
All purpose potting mix is two parts of soil, one part compost and one part perlite, or vermiculite. The soil containing sand and clay is the base ingredient and you can add perlite to improve the water retention. If you make the compost at your home, then it will prove to be healthy for your plants.
Mistakes while making potting mix:
If you are not a professional, then you are bound to make mistakes while preparing the potting mix. Here are some of the mistakes and its remedies for the potting mix:
If you have stored your potting mix, then do not use the stored version of the potting mix again until you have rejuvenated it. When you use the mix again, add pr – soaked coconut by-products to retain the moisture in the mix.
Sometimes, the potting mix will dry out. Hence, when you bring that out from your store, warm it in a microwave and add a few gallons of perlite. This will make the stored mix usable, and you can place it directly in the pot or mix it with the soil for the best results.
If you think your potting mix has too many insects that are not good for the plant, then do not reuse it. Just throw it away and prepare a new one.
You can also prepare the best DIY potting mix for indoor plants at your home. It looks complicated, but once you get your hands dirty, it becomes simple. Just put together a few ingredients, and you are good to go. Your plants will thank you in their language for feeding them nicely.
Planting is an activity that requires your care and attention. Hence, leaving them on products available in the market may not be the correct solution. Allow yourself to be better than being lazy and prepare your plants a DIY all purpose potting mix.