If you are looking to grow high-yielding, healthy plants in garden soil or potting soil, you are in the right place. Here at Hydrobuilder, we carry the widest selection of plant soils online at the best prices. You''ll find your favorite brands, such as Fox Farm, Vermicrop Organics, Mother Earth, and more.
In the world of horticulture today, even something as simple as plant soil has evolved to generate higher yields and healthier plants. Here are a few things you need to know about choosing a soil for your grow.
What is garden soil?
These days, garden soil is sold pre-mixed in bags, and is intended to be put into garden pots or into a planting bed. It is best used outdoors, but you can grow indoors with these soils as well. However, we recommend a grow tent if you do this, as it will contain the mess of your grow and protect your home from spills and mishaps.
Is garden soil the same as top soil?
Garden soil and top soil are very different, and should never be put in the same category. Garden soil is what we sell here, and provides some level of nutrition to plants. Topsoil, on the other hand, is what you will find when you start digging in your back yard.
Whenever you hear the term "garden soil", its in reference to pre-mixed bags, not just any old dirt. It is far superior to what you will find in your backyard because it includes carefully formulated nutrition and is pH balanced to help you grow the biggest plants possible.
If you are a serious grower, you shouldn't even attempt to grow plants with the dirt you dug up outside. You'll just be disappointed, as it will likely not be adequate in terms of water retention and aeration, along with not providing any level of nutrition.
What is the best soil to grow plants?
If you are under the impression that all soils are created equal, you are sorely mistaken! The best soil to grow plants with largely depends on what your goals are as the grower. Are you looking to grow huge, organic trees outdoors? Will you be using the same potting mix from seed to harvest, or do you want something to start your clones in before moving them into a hotter soil?
You'll need to consider all this and more when making your decision on what to grow with, but you cannot go wrong with Fox Farm Ocean Forest or Fox Farm Happy Frog. These are widely considered the best plant soils on the market.
But, there are some others you should check out, especially if you are an organic grower looking for a living soil. SoHum Living Soil contains all the nutrition your plants will need from seed to harvest, and is quickly becoming an industry favorite. If you want to learn more about which soil is best for you, check out our article on Best Soils For Plants.
What should I put in my garden soil?
If you are looking for ways to improve your plant soil, there are a number of things you can add to it. First, start by adding compost tea before you start growing, to introduce microbial life into the ground and start creating a healthy and active soil.
When you start mixing your garden or potting soil into the ground or pots, you can add garden soil amendments. These will also help prepare your soil for cultivating strong, healthy plants.
If you are an organic grower, this is the best way to grow without liquid nutrients. You can compost your soil and top dress it with organic amendments throughout the grow as needed to keep the plant fed. This leads to the best-tasting plants with the best flavor.
Another important addition to any soil is perlite. Perlite is known as the little white "rocks" you see in many potting soils, and it greatly improves drainage and aeration.
How can I prepare my garden soil?
As mentioned above, using compost tea and other plant soil amendments will prepare your soil for a successful growing season. If you want to learn more about amending your plant soil, check out our article on amending your garden soil!
Can you reuse potting soil?
If you are growing on a budget, you can reuse your potting soil a few times provided you take the right steps to amend it. After growing plants in it, the soil will contain some level of microbial life, but your plants will have consumed much of the nutrition for flower.
Once you pull your plants for harvest, let the soil sit until you are ready to plant again. You can add some compost to it if you have a few weeks or months between grows. This way, the microbial activity will increase and your soil conditions will have improved by the time you're ready to grow again. Then, when you are ready to plant, amend the soil carefully and you are ready to go.
The key thing here is that you need to actually amend it. If you just stick your plants in and try and grow again, your plants won't have the same level of nutrition as with fresh soil, and the pH will likely be out of whack. Once you read our article on amending your soil for plants, you'll have a better idea of how to get started.
Before you start growing and throughout the entirety of your grow, you'll need to make sure you are testing your soil. Visit our learning center for a full guide on how to do this.
At Hydrobuilder, we carry many different types of garden and potting soil, including OMRI certified organic soil. If you're buying plant soil, you'll likely need something to put it in! Check out the popular Gorilla Pots, which are considered the best fabric pots for indoor and outdoor growers alike. If you want to learn more about growing in soil, check out some of the related articles in our learning center.
If you have any questions, give our experienced growers a call today at 888-815-9763.