Therefore, perlite is undoubtedly a safe “organic” additive if you’re planning to perform some horticulture or organic farming. What perlite is: an inorganic, non-toxic, lightweight soil amendment. It’s also popular among farmers who grow succulents or orchids, and those who do lots of pot/container gardening, as it offers impressive drainage. Gardeningbank.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. It occurs naturally and has the unusual property of greatly expanding when heated sufficiently. Perlite created for the aim of gardening and horticulture are often categorized into three places, depending on the individual particle’s size: Coarse Perlite: Coarse perlite typically has the highest draining and porosity abilities. Perlite is a form of naturally occurring rock comprised predominantly of silica. On the surface: You can scatter perlite on the surface of the soil, as it acts as a wicking agent. The uses of perlite in houseplants include improving drainage and adding soil compaction. ", Vermiculite: What It Is and How to Use It, The Difference Between Potting Soil and Potting Mix, The 5 Reasons Houseplant Gurus Love Using This Growing Medium in Place of Soil, How to Grow and Care for String of Dolphins, How to Grow and Care for Chinese Money Plant. Perlite is a form of volcanic glass which has a high water content, typically formed from the hydration of Obsidian. How Does Perlite Compare to Some Other Mineral Additives Thankfully, cannabis can also benefit from this highly versatile growing medium. They both have overlapping capabilities and aids with seed starting and soil aeration. Pumice is better suited for sandy soils as it increases water-retention to a great extent. However, pumice particles are much larger than perlite and are less likely to blow away in windy regions. It is actually allowed by the National Organic Standards Board for use in certified organic agriculture. That said, you can equally find perlite at a good hydroponics store. Additionally, when comparing vermiculite and perlite, vermiculite has a higher moisture-retentive ability. Perlite has a waxy to pearly lustre and is commonly gray or greenish but may be brown, blue, or red. As an Amazon associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.. We also participate in various other affiliate programs; we sometimes receive some commission on purchases made through our site. Perlite is a type of volcanic glass with very high water content. It’s generally cheaper than pumice and is produced in different grades, weighing as small as two pounds per cubic foot. Vermiculite is also a soil additive utilized for aeration (though less so than perlite), but the two are not always interchangeable, although as rooting mediums, both provide the same benefit. In pots, it helps to keep everything loose, well-draining and aerated. And because of that, the hard mineral glass must be processed into the lightweight, white-colored, plasticky object that looks like Styrofoam, confusing lots of veteran gardeners about its primary purpose and origin! It doesn’t decay with time, which makes it a preferred choice to vermiculite for plants that will be occasionally repotted. Perlite is a mined mineral that undergoes some physical processing. Horticultural Perlite 2 Quart Bag - All Natural Soil Additive for Indoor & Outdoor Plants, Improves Drainage, Aeration, and Growth. Furthermore, in soil mixtures, perlite usually floats to the top of the soil, and when watered, it spills over the edge of a container. Perlite is a versatile and sustainable mineral that is mined and processed with a negligible impact on the environment. Aside from that, you can also scatter fine perlite lightly across the surface of your lawn, where it’ll eventually work down into the soil and boost drainage. It’s sometimes referred to as “swollen pyrite” and is nicknamed “volcanic popcorn.” Perlite is a glassy volcanic rock, gray and with a pearly shine on the rock's surface.
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