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This post is all about the best aroid soil mix. The only one you’ll ever need for gorgeous, healthy aroid plants.
Picture this: You bought a beautiful Aroid (that I’m sure at times, leaves you wondering if you can even afford it), brought it home, and cared for it to the best of your ability.
A few months pass, and this plant has grown beautifully. However, your gorgeous aroid looks to be outgrowing its nursery pot. So you think to yourself, “I am going to repot it this weekend!”.
Then suddenly it dawns on you: “What soil am I going to use?!” You break out into a cold sweat while searching for what is a good aroid mix that will nourish your beautiful plant for the next few months.
You decide that your plant deserves nothing but the best. “I am going to make this soil myself!” Does this sound familiar? I applaud your enthusiasm, but like food, not all Aroid soil mix recipes are created equally.
What Makes a Good Soil for Aroids?
Like any living thing, Aroids will thrive in an environment that is similar to it’s native one. Aroids are primarily tropical/jungle plants, many vining and epiphytic.
They grow up tall trees to reach for sunlight, get nutrients from the canopy run-down, and get water from the rain or humidity in the air. Think lush rainforest. The top layer of rainforest soils are well-draining, airy, moist, and full of nutrients from composted organic matter.
Through years of trial and error (aka many dead or sad looking plants) we’ve settled on one recipe. Our Aroid soil recipe incorporates every aspect of mimicking the rainforest soil, and it shows in the plants we grow and our friends’ plants we have given the recipe to.
Really…It will be the only aroid soil recipe you’ll ever need.
4 Ingredients for the best Aroid Soil Mix
You won’t have to scour the internet for numerous, obscure products or ingredients for this recipe. This simple recipe needs only 4 ingredients that are readily available at your local garden center or online retailer.
Aroid Soil Mix Ingredient #1: Base Soil
This is the foundation of this recipe. Always use a quality potting soil mix that consists primarily of peat moss and composted organic material for your base soil.
The base provides just enough moisture retention and the perfect amount of nutrients for your plant. Fortunately, there are numerous quality potting soils available on the market.
We personally use Fox Farms Ocean Forest potting soil for all our aroids. Fox Farms Ocean Forest is a luscious mix of composted forest organic material, sphagnum peat moss, loamy sand along with earthworm castings, bat guano, fish emulsion, and crab meal to give it a punch of nutrients.
If I were to use a single potting mix, and add nothing else, it would be Fox Farms Ocean Forest, hands down.
Aroid Soil Mix Ingredient #2: Worm Castings
Worm castings add essential nutrients and important trace minerals to the mix. As worms digest organic matter, their castings (poop) break down into nutrients and minerals that plants can readily absorb.
Worm castings provide an all natural, 100% organic, highly effective fertilizer that will not burn your plants.
As a heads up, always use a quality product. There have been some reports of lower quality worm casting products causing bacterial infections to plants’ root systems.
We personally use the product, Earthworm Castings. This product is OMRI (Organic Materials Review Institute) listed and contains no additional fillers. We’ve made tons of our soil mix with Earthworm Castings and never had any issues.
Aroid Soil Mix Ingredient #3: Perlite
The third ingredient adds air and drainage to our soil. You’ve seen it a million times if you’ve ever taken a look at potting soil. You’ve also seen it in your plant’s pot that you just brought home from the nursery. It’s perlite! Perlite is a versatile and important component to any serious aroid soil mix.
Perlite is porous. First, it allows it to hold air pockets to allow drainage and breathability to your soil. It can also retain water long enough for even water dispersion into the soil. Furthermore, perlite can retain nutrients in those air cavities to help provide constant nutrients for the root system. Perlite also prevents compacting of soil due to it’s physical stability that won’t decompress or warp under heavy soil.
Perlite is perlite, but what we look for in particular is the size of the granule. We like to use large chunky granules to maximize the benefits of perlite. As such, we use #3 sized perlite granules in our recipe.
Mother Earth Perlite #3 is the perfectly sized perlite for aroids, and we use it in all of our mixes.
Aroid Soil Mix Ingredient #4: Orchid Bark
The fourth ingredient sets apart high-quality aroid soil from regular indoor plant soils. This last ingredient is Orchid Bark Mix.
It most closely mimics what a thriving aroid in the wild would be growing in or on. It is so important, that it comprises the largest portion of this recipe.
Orchid bark mix contains chunky pieces of wood that provides a majority of the soil aeration. It also contains charcoal which absorbs impurities and stabilizes the soil pH.
We’ve found Better-Gro Orchid Potting Mix to be superior compared to other orchid park potting mixes.
The Best Aroid Soil Mix
You’ve made it this far, so now it’s time to put it all together. This recipe is as easy as 1-2-3 (and 4) to make and remember. So gather your tools and ingredients and let’s get started.
Tools You’ll Need
- Measuring Cup or any container to scoop up your ingredients.
- Bin to mix and store your mix
- Gardening Gloves (optional)
- 1 part Worm Castings
- 2 parts Potting Mix
- 3 parts Perlite
- 4 parts Orchid Bark
- Using your measuring cup, scoop up the appropriate amount for each ingredient and pour them into your bin. Try your best to scoop equal sized portions for the specified amount of parts. Example: scoop each ingredient to the brim of your measuring cup. With 1 scoop of worm castings, 2 scoops of potting mix, 3 scoops of perlite and 4 scoops of orchid bark, you will have 10 scoops total.
- Once all ingredients are in the bin, mix it all up together evenly throughout. Some of the chunkier pieces tend to sit at the top.
- Cover bin to ensure freshness and to retain moisture
- Always give your soil a good shake or stir before using.
That’s all there is to it! No more anxiety with what soil to plant your aroids in. You will see the difference in the health of your plants, along with increased growth.
I highly recommend this soil mix for plants that are well rooted. I’ve propagated cuttings in this soil successfully, but there is a better mix we use for non-rooted propagations.
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