A lot of people ask us about potting up. The most frequent question is “what type of soil do I need for potting up my house plant?”.. To this there are a few good answers but, like all things plant related, depend on a few things too.

Plant Soil

Firstly, unless you are green fingered (knowledgeable about plants), you probably didn’t realise that different plants need different things from the earth. Some species prefer more acidity whilst others, more alkaline. One plant may prefer a “tight” soil composure whilst another would like it loosey goosey (that isn’t a horticultural term by the way). It gets a little complicated so we thought we would share our thoughts on the subject – making it as simple as can be.

The short answer is to use a “potting soil”. Getting the right one is a little more tricky so let’s go over what it is about soil that’s so damn delicious.

Indoor plants require a mixture of earth stuff that allows the roots room to breathe – they literally breathe! Astonishingly, house plants need a period of time where they are not drinking. They require a moment, quite a long time in a plant’s world, to swallow and take a deep breath of Oxygen before gulping up their next fill. This is why we recommend watering every two or three weeks – to allow time for the soil to dry out a bit. If the soil composure is “tight”, like the soil in your garden, it will compact and squash the poor roots – choking them up! So, we do not recommend using garden soil for this reason.

Finding the right potting soil is easy. We thoroughly advise against using peat as the environmental impact of this is quite terrible – you can grab a bag of peat-free multi purpose compost at your local plant center with relative ease – support your garden centers! And that would be it…if you were in a hurry – but you want the very best for your plants so, read on!

Check out this video on YouTube How to: Make Cheap Homemade Peat Free Potting Mix (Step By Step Guide) to find out how to make your own potting soil. This chap uses multi purpose compost, leaf mold, perlite or vermiculite, natural fertilisers and a pinch of salt!

Not only will your plants be beside themselves with joy at the effort you’ve gone to but, you will feel a deep sense of satisfaction and triumph knowing that you have provided your house plants with an on going, nutrient rich meal by your now, very green (mostly brown) fingers.