Choosing The Best Potting Soil For Your Containers

Pot gardening

With Springtime coming, and planting season about to begin, those of us with a green thumb are relishing the idea of planting time. When planting in-ground or pot, it is always a good idea to use only the best quality potting soil.

Here is our list of some of the best potting soil mixes. Enjoy 🙂


Ocean Forest Garden Potting Soil

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Filled with nutrients, this potting soil mix has everything your plant needs to begin its life and is an excellent addition to your greenhouse.

This potting soil does not require the use of any additional fertilizers and saves tons of hassle in the early days of your plant’s life. It contains a mix of bat guano, earthworms, crab meal, forest humus, and peat moss.

Fox Farm’s Ocean Forest organic potting soil mix is an excellent choice for potting soil and has many of the nutrients required to grow beautiful plants or tasty fruit and veg.

Although a bit pricey compared to other potting soil mixes, this mix is worth every cent, as it will have your plants growing healthy and happy in no time.

We would recommend it as a potting soil mix for those who may not have as much experience with growing from seed.

Why We Like It

  • Excellent soil aeration
  • Great for seedlings
  • Promotes plant growth

  • Warranty: None

Our Verdict

We liked the Ocean Forest garden mix because it’s excellent for potting plants, and sprouting vegetables,. This potting soil is an excellent choice for those who like their soil mix and fertilizers fused


Fox Farm Happy Frog Organic Mix

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This potting soil is fitting for both indoor and outdoor garden plants. So, no matter if you have a cactus in your living room or an apple tree in your yard, this potting soil will give your plants firmness and enough nutrients to grow nicely.

If you see your plants are not growing at all or are wilting quickly, they maybe are not getting enough nutrients. So, try replacing the soil you use with the Happy Frog organic potting soil, and you will soon see the difference.

The benefits of this product are increased growth speed, strong plant structure, and excellent nutrient balance.

Since all the necessary ingredients are there, with this potting soil, you will undoubtedly get the better-quality plants.

Not only will they get more air but also better watering. With this potting soil, you see the results immediately. Many customers like this product also because it comes with the gloves for safe handling.

I prefer Happy Frog organic potting soil because my plants just bloom, and my garden looks more beautiful than ever!

Why We Like It

  • Ready to use-PH
  • Supports container gardening
  • Retains moisture
  • Encourages nutrient uptake

  • Warranty: None

Our Verdict

The Happy Frog organic potting soil is an excellent product for those who are looking to plant fruits, vegetables or plants.


Proven Winners Premium All Purpose Potting Soil

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This potting soil is simply excellent for improving clay soil. It is very effective and is able to give the plants enough of an advantage to grow strong.

The bag of soil is really big. It’s big enough to fill about 15 6-inch pots.

Proven Winners has a small amount of fertilizer, so it would be ideal to add a little more. Although, additional fertilizer is not completely necessary as the mixture works perfectly well.

You should avoid storing and keeping this type of soil for a long time, as the chances of mosquitoes appearing are high.

Because this soil is capable of maintaining moisture for a long time, you should not water the plants constantly. Keep in mind, overwatering will kill the roots.

It is ideal for those people who have a lot of flowers, because its mixture and preparation is made especially to produce vibrant flowers.

It is a product that you will not regret, plus the price is excellent compared to the amount of soil in the bag.

Why We Like It

  • Effective
  • Maintains moisture
  • Price

  • Warranty: None

Our Verdict

We liked the Proven Winners Premium mix because of it quality. Plus the price is excellent compared to the amount of soil in the bag.


Espoma AP8 – 5 Pack

Check the current price on Amazon here.

If you are looking for an organic potting mix you can trust, then this is the right product for you. The Espoma Organic helps plants to grow healthy and free of pesticides.

With this soil, you can grow healthy plants without the need for extra fertilizer. It can also help deter any bugs on your plant.

This organic potting mix has helped me increase the fertility of my plants in a very short time. What is also interesting is that this organic potting mix improves and stimulates nutrients in plants.

It nourishes your plant by keeping the nutrients in the root for a long time. You can use this organic potting soil in a mixture of other soil that is not so good quality and therefore improve it.

This mix also absorbs water very well and retains it for a long time, so you don’t have to water your plants as often.

This potting soil is most commonly used in greenhouses and for pots for easy growing control. This product is for the person who grows the plants and for anyone who wants to grow healthy plants.

Why We Like It

  • Easy to use
  • Retains water
  • Nourishing

  • Warranty: None

Our Verdict

We liked this mix because it helps get rid of bugs and nourishes and promotes healthy plants.


Fox Farm Bush Doctor Coco Loco

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Bush Doctor Coco Loco can be used to grow virtually anything. It’s a great alternative for those who struggle to source a high-quality organic soil in their area.

Many customers were extremely happy with the deals on offer when you buy two or more bags. The free shipping was an added bonus.

9 out of ten customers recommend this product to others. Customers were delighted with the quantity and quality of the potting soil, especially considering the price they were charged.

The perfect bag of potting soil, offering everything your plant needs all in one place.

One of the key features of coconut humus is that it has sponge-like qualities, allowing it to hold water and nutrients longer, offering more benefits to your plants. This soil still offers exceptional drainage too.

When compared to other potting soils, this one has lower humidity levels that help reduces, mold and possible root rot

Why We Like It

  • Holds water for a long time
  • Excellent drainage
  • Deters pests

  • Warranty: None

Our Verdict

We liked the Coco Loco because it comes as a large bag of high quality potting soil. Made from layers of the best coconut palm humus.


Expanding Wonder Soil Reground

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The Wonder Soil Expanding Potting Soil comes in a 5-pound bag that expands to 45 pounds when watered.

It is suitable for growing a wide range of potted plants. Some call it a “clean” potting soil because it doesn’t contain any dirt. It is a fluffy mix that is made from biodegradable matter like coconut waste and worm castings.

There is no actual soil in the Wonder Soil.

This potting soil is lightweight and easy to work with. Gardeners with arthritis prefer it because it is easier to lift.

We like it because it provides all the nutrition a plant needs, whether you use fertilizer or not. Furthermore, all it needs to expand is a little water.

The only concern is the price. For a 5-pound bag of soil, the Wonder Soil seems overpriced. Some consumers have pointed out its price as a sore point, although it is worth every penny to some.

Overall, the expandable Wonder Soil is worthy of your consideration, especially if you want a biodegradable, nutrient-rich soil that won’t break your back.

Why We Like It

  • Biodegradable
  • Drains well
  • Expands from 5 lbs to 45 lbs

  • Warranty: None

Our Verdict

We liked Wonder soil because it’s lightweight, easy to carry and expands when you add water to it.

Potted Plant

Choosing the Perfect Potting Soil

The right potting soil can make a difference in your garden’s looks. However, for how easy as it might sound, the reality is that it is not uncommon for many not to know what to look for in potting soil.

To help you in the processes, we put together this essential guide designed to give you all the necessary information you need to make sure you purchase a potting soil that will guarantee good results for your garden.

Are you ready to start?

In general, good potting soils should be light and fluffy. to provide enough air for the roots to grow and be able to breathe. This will avoid rotting once you place your plant in its container and maximize the chance of its survival.

Another important tip you should follow is to look for the right ingredients.

You might be surprised to learn that the best potting mixes do not contain soil. Instead, look for ingredients such as bark, that ensures better water and fertilizer retention, perlite, that provide roots with additional space and more opportunities for growth and lime to neutralize the acid.

Natural ingredients tend to be better and more healthy to any kind of plant you are looking to grow in your container.

Don’t forget to fertilize your plants. If you can, get a potting mix that is enhanced with fertilizer, either a starter or a slow-release version, depending on your needs.

Indeed, a starter charge will charge for about two to three watering, while the slow-release fertilizer is depleted in the first month. That means that you’ll still need to fertilize your plants from time to time.

Avoid purchasing mixes containing pesticides, especially if you are planting herbs or vegetables.

You must keep from using garden soil or compost, no matter how well they might work for your garden. Potting plants have different requirements, as there is a risk that roots will choke without the right soil.

Also, it is most common for topsoils, compost or general garden soils to contain weed seeds or fungus that might affect the wellbeing of your potting plants.

No matter the type of plant you decide to plant, all of them will need to be watered frequently. Plants in containers have to live with a limited amount of soil, which makes it critical to keep the roots moist at all times.

Potting soil

Looking For the Right Potting Ingredients

We’ve mentioned early the importance of looking for the ingredients of whatever potting soil you are interested in before purchasing it. Here is a more detailed list of some of the best ingredients you should look for.

  • Peat – this organic material comes from decomposed plants and is a major component of potting mixes as it allows for optimal water retention and doesn’t get easily compressed
  • Compost – Sometimes, you’ll find compost as an ingredient of potting mixes. Usually, it is included for the added nutrients that it provides and because it can reduce air space in the soil, allowing for better conditions for the roots. Keep in mind that too much compost might ruin the performance of good potting soil: only chose potting mixes that do not contain more than 1/3 of compost.
  • Bark – this is another common ingredient, often present in the cheapest potting mixes instead of the more expensive peat. Bark provides good aeration, however, it requires more frequent watering as it tends to dry quite quickly.
  • Coir – this fibrous material is often added as it retains water without becoming too soggy. It is mostly used in place of peat.
  • Vermiculite – this gray, spongy material serves to increase water, fertilizer and nutrient retention for longer periods.
  • Perlite – the white volcanic rock is porous and is used to provide your plant’s roots with better aeration and drainage.
  • Sand – it can improve drainage and is often added in large quantities to mixes, especially for those specifically designed for succulents and cacti.
  • Fertilizer – some potting mixes are enriched with fertilizer. Keep in mind that no matter whether it is a slow-release fertilizer or a starting charge, the fertilizer will eventually run out, meaning that you’ll have to keep adding it separately to the plant.

How To Pick Yor Potting Mix

Let’s be honest. Getting to a garden center and picking your mix is not that easy. The vast variety of options and the different ingredients might make everything more confusing.

You must buy a potting mix for your plants planted in containers as garden soils, manure products and mulch serve for different purposes and are enriched with other ingredients that might prevent your plant to grow healthily.

Here are some of the differences between these materials you should keep in mind.

Garden soil is much heavier than potting soil and it usually contains cheaper additives like sand and clay. The risk is suffocated the plant’s roots when using garden soil as a potting mix.

Manure products are designed to be used outdoor as they are rich in nitrogen. However, these ingredients, for how beneficial it can be for your outside garden will burn your flowers planted in pots.

Mulch is usually made of raw wood and can keep the water from evaporating, allowing gardens to stay moist for longer and to use less water. However, it doesn’t work well for potting plants as mulch tends to suck nitrogen from the soil and will make your plants looked starved.

All in all, depending on the type of plant you are looking to place in your pot, you might require different types of potting mixes. Succulents need porous media (richer in perlite) and that doesn’t hold as much water. Ferns and terrarium plants prefer media with more peat, that will keep the soil moist for longer.

Today, you’ll find specially mixed for different varieties of plants, just make sure to pick the right one!


The Bottomline

Finding the perfect potting mix is not easy. You need to choose a high-quality mix, specifically designed for the kinds of plants you are looking to grow. In general, look for the best ingredients and fluffy and lightweight mixes.

If a product seems heavy, avoid it, as it won’t provide enough air space for the roots to grow. If you are stuck in the decision, choose a peat-based mix or make your potting mix by combining the ingredients listed above.

Make sure you provide your plants with the necessary care and you’ll see that they’ll grow healthy and happy!

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