Ask a Question forum: is this the right succulent soil?

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succulentsgirl101
Nov 9, 2016 6:32 AM CST
a friend told me that the right succulent soil is 1 part compost fertilizer and 1 part vermin soil. Since im a beginner on collecting and taking care of a succulent i doubted her answers to me. is this the right kind of soil to be used?
Name: sy
Northern Ireland (Zone 8a)
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syzone8aUK
Nov 9, 2016 7:04 AM CST
Hi there succulentgirl! It would depend on the succulents in question! But generally you want loose, airy, porous material that is fast draining! Good drainage is key in looking after succulents! You can use a little compost if you like but make sure you add plenty of pumice or perlite and maybe some coarse sand or grit! You want to soil to dry out as fast as possible with these plants because they are very prone to root rot! A mixture of coir (coconut husk) and perlite is what I use, sometimes I will add a little free draining cacti compost aswell but you don't want too much organic matter because it will pack down over time! I'm sure there's others who are expert in this field so wait and hear what they say!
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Name: Steve Claggett
Portland Orygun (Zone 8a)
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madcratebuilder
Nov 9, 2016 9:24 AM CST
If you do not need a lot of soil I would go with a commercial cactus/succulent mix. Another way to go is a quality indoor potting mix with 30% or more perlite added. First requirement is fast draining. Many folks like to use a top dressing of granite chicken grit.

I'm lucky to have several potting soil manufactures within 100 miles so I have a large selection.

ETA: Welcome to the forum.

Spectamur agendo
[Last edited by madcratebuilder - Nov 9, 2016 9:25 AM (+)]
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Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
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tarev
Nov 9, 2016 9:51 AM CST
Hello succulentsgirl101, well draining soil is of utmost importance with any succulent type you are growing. Succulents do not need too rich soil mix, that is why I just use cacti mix and to really make it well draining add more pumice or perlite to make it grittier. Make sure the base of your plant is not sitting soaking wet, it helps to add top dressing to make it drain fast. I have been finding chicken grit (insoluble crushed granite) to be a real good one. I also use akadama and kanuma for top dressing, easier for me to visually see if the media is still wet, with the color change it does when still damp.

If I am growing succulents more tropical in nature, I use some bark, clay rocks, pumice, and a little cacti mix.

Also consider, the size of your container, don't use too deep containers, it will take far longer to dry out at root zone.
[Last edited by tarev - Nov 9, 2016 9:54 AM (+)]
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