high nutrient retention levels. and nutrient retention levels in soil. of your garden soil. The differences in the way each medium retains water and how much water each In general, expanded perlite is a little bit better as far as insulation goes. As a naturally occurring mineral, vermiculite We may receive a commission when you buy something through one of our links. It forms an expanded platelike structure that traps air, moisture and nutrients present in a potting soil mix. Both vermiculite and perlite can help further strengthen soil conditions. vermiculite to the potting soil of plants that like lots of water. mixes and blending your own custom potting soil mix, Helps lighten and loosen heavy, Garden Betty independently selects products to feature on this site. when it’s used in potting soil. Now for the big question: What are the differences between perlite vs vermiculite? blending your own custom potting soil mix, Helps to lighten and loosen heavy, (Despite similarities in appearance, Styrofoam should never be used in gardens or as a substitute for perlite.). Garden Guides covers Vermiculite VS Perlite, Gardening Know How covers Vermiculite Growing Medium, Get Busy Gardening covers DIY Succulent Potting Soil, Maximum Yield covers Perlite for Hydroponic Gardens, Schundler Company Using Perlite in Potted Plants, Vermiculite.org covers What is Vermiculite, Washington Post covers More on Potting Mix, Filed Under: Soil & Composting Tagged With: container gardening, container soil, garden soil, soil additive, soil amendment, soil amendments, soil recipes, Vermiculite vs perlite. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Some prefer better soil aeration, for which perlite cannot be beaten. potted plant containers due to its light weight, Great for seed starting or retention levels in their garden soil. Perlite is a white colored grain, finer than vermiculite, and starts off as fluffy balls or a powder if crushed. retention. amendments that gardeners use to change the water retention and nutrient when you want to increase the drainage and aeration of the soil. Mix the perlite into the soil you already loosened. with water trapped inside that is then superheated by humans and crushed until Copyright © 2020. The yard is rocks. starting and cultivation for indoor growing, outdoor growing, and composting. Our gardening obsessed editors and writers choose every product we review. you. That makes perlite beneficial for plants that are In case you want the insulation to be rigid through mixing with clay slip, use perlite, this won't take up as much water as vermiculite. Anyway, perlite and vermiculite are both mined minerals, and both have many useful applications, including insulation and water filtration. percent. heated and crushed until it changes in color and texture. Vermiculite and perlite are not the same thing, even though they may look the same on paper. Rumors to the contrary that you may have heard are linked heated and crushed until it explodes in order to transform the rock into small potting soil also helps the soil retain nutrients and keep them available for nutrients, making them more consistently available to your plants. amend and improve your soil. It is very airy but not porous (more on this later, as very important for your herbs). Neither medium will rot, deteriorate, or decompose. grow around the particles and take in whatever moisture they need and since the of course, and supply them with nutrients from an appropriate fertilizer. Many Like perlite, vermiculite is a naturally occurring mineral that expands when heated. Look for packaging marked “organic.”. seed starting mixture or whenever your plants need water to stay locked into Vermiculite’s water-holding capability makes it maintaining high humidity is a concern. aeration and texture in potting soil and garden soil mixtures. and thinks that it is far superior to perlite. If for rooting cuttings or growing cacti, succulents, and epiphytes. Perlite is used in potting soil frequently onto nutrients. plants. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases. I used to use it in potting mixes for heathers but didn't understand why the foliage was getting chlorotic (yellow), until I tested the pH of the vermiculite. Perlite is a naturally occurring volcanic rock that has been damping-off and other fungal diseases that can threaten them as they start to It is an all-natural mineral product that is mined out of the ground It does have higher water retention properties than perlite, but not all plants are water-loving. I know, it sounds like a strange combo (to retain and drain), but these qualities are what make perlite so good at providing oxygen to plant roots and improving soil structure. Vermiculite is better your clay soil could use a boost of organic material, use half perlite and half The perlite will wick water up (and away be careful with this with seedlings) and the vermiculite will act like "cork" sponges to hold bits of water. odorless, sterile, disease-free, insect-free, and seed-free. Vermiculite is magnesium-aluminum-iron Perlite is lightweight, odorless, clean, and easy to handle. when it comes to starting seeds because it protects seedlings against Like perlite, vermiculite also has many industrial applications. is a better option. it up, and letting air circulate through the soil more freely. They have tons of uses such as aerating the soil, retaining water, improving water retention, and many more. Typically, vermiculite will be tan/brown in color and perlite will be white. Both are odorless, sterile, disease-free, insect-free, and seed-free. will rot, deteriorate, or decompose. six to 12 inches of soil. solution. Perlite is optimal when it comes to rooting cuttings from soil so it’s consistently moist. Neither retains water, unlike vermiculite, another soil amendment. Both mediums are used as an ingredient in For more information, take a look at this graph from Research Gate detailing the water retention of perlite, vermiculite, and various mixtures. Mixing perlite into the soil in your outdoor Both perlite and vermiculite are highly porous, making them able to hold water in the soil so it’s available for your plants. Horticultural Use: Pumice vs Perlite Both pumice and perlite create spaces in potting mediums for water and air. Which is Better for Hydroponics: Vermiculite vs. Perlite? So how do you know which one you should I just use a 4 parts perlite to 1 part vermiculite ratio. In hydroponics, a growing medium takes the place of dirt or soil, while water and fertilizer provide the nutrients. 20 thoughts on “Vermiculite vs Perlite vs Horticultural Grit (Which One is Better in the Container Garden)” Abbas says: 11/09/2019 at 11:46 am. Vermiculite, on the other hand, absorbs and holds much more water than perlite. Perlite and vermiculite are both lightweight sand substitutes for soilless potting mixes which are often used to improve aeration and texture in potting soil and garden soil mixtures. Although it’s a common misconception, is very safe to use. Vermiculite is perfect for plants that enjoy Perlite Vs Vermiculite. material. They are both also commonly used as carriers in dry fertilizers, pesticides, And this can cause confusion among gardeners. You will need to water your plants, Although perlite doesn’t hold onto water as Perlite vs Vermiculite: Which One Should You Use in Your Eco-Friendly Garden? Nicknamed “volcanic popcorn,” perlite is made by heating volcanic glass to super high temperatures until it expands and “pops” into the white, porous, lightweight rock that resembles little Styrofoam balls. Garden Betty is where I write about modern homesteading, farm-to-table cooking, and outdoor adventuring — all that encompass a life well-lived outdoors. Vermiculite does not break down or decompose Compared to perlite, vermiculite is the better choice if you are looking for a material that helps retain water as well as aerate. Vermiculite is a spongy material that is dark brown to golden brown in color. part potting soil (choosing one without vermiculite that offers excellent to one mine, which is now closed, which produced vermiculite tainted with © Garden Betty 2010-2020. whenever you’re working with plants that need their soil to retain moisture. There are major differences between vermiculite and perlite, making it important to choose the right one, lest your garden be ruined by a bad growing media choice.We’ve already covered the biggest difference: Vermiculite will mix with soil and help to retain water. If the plants you’re growing need the soil to stay on the wetter side, Heck, even their names sound like they could be related. How much perlite to add depends on what you But the fear seems to linger, which may explain why vermiculite is not as easily found in garden centers or nurseries. Better Vegetable Gardening covers Using Perlite in Potting Soil, Epic Gardening covers Perlite vs Vermiculite, Love to Know covers Vermiculite for Gardening. Perlite is made from volcanic rock, which is trying to figure out which additive your soil needs the most, wondering what As a result, when it comes to perlite vs vermiculite, the latter tends to be more popular. I believe the secret to a good life is... Read more. Perlite can established plants because it helps prevent the rot that can otherwise be a Expanded vermiculite is a lightweight, sterile, and inert material that is non-combustible and non-reactive to all but the strongest acids. These days, vermiculite is mined from countries all over the world with vermiculite deposits, and producers test the vermiculite for asbestos to ensure its safety. The nursery was out of stock, but the employee pointed me to bags of vermiculite on the shelf and assured me it was the same. To start seeds, use a mix of half perlite and half Well, to find out the difference between perlite and vermiculite, then this article is for you. Your email address will not be published. perfect as an anti-caking agent in dry pesticides and fertilizers. It offers makes it an excellent soil amendment for growing succulents. be rooted in this same mixture, or you can increase the perlite up to 100 soil to dry out between waterings, such as cacti or succulents. After soaking in the bleach mixture for 20 Whereas vermiculite absorbs water in its plate-like structure, perlite traps water in its very porous, undulated structure. Vermiculite comes from super-heated mica. epiphytes, when you’re rooting cuttings, and whenever quick drainage or I find that the vermiculite doesn’t hold the mixture moist as long as perlite … There’s really no need to mix perlite and The vermiculite from the Libby mine contained a naturally occurring asbestos called tremolite-actinolite. I now only use perlite. that’s brown or beige in color and has a soft, sponge-like texture. It’s also non-toxic and safe to use in a variety of applications. Do you know what's in your potting mix? For horticultural use, vermiculite is found in four different grades, or granule sizes: If you’re buying horticultural vermiculite sold in stores today, then that vermiculite does not contain asbestos. Gardening Channel. moisture consistently available in their soil. Vermiculite helps hold moisture in the soil so Vermiculite is also the best choice if the plants in your is right for you. other sources has since been tested and proven to be asbestos free and If you are standing in the gardening center, Perlite does not decompose over time because Fig Beetles: Bumbling Pilots of the Garden, Propaganda Told Us Carrots Can Improve Eyesight — Here's the Truth, Defending the Dandelion: It's Not Just Another Weed, Ideal for seed starting or blending into potting mixes. he doesn’t mind paying up for vermiculite, particularly the coarser size of the I want to plant ground cover roses and dwarf pines in my front yard. challenge. used to grow plants. harder, is white in color, and is made out of mined volcanic rock. The cavern-like texture of perlite helps it shed water more readily than vermiculite, while at the same time storing moisture and nutrients for the plant. A 50/50 mix of vermiculite and perlite is a very popular medium for drip type hydroponic systems as well as ebb and flow systems. Both perlite and vermiculite can get you fast results when it comes to water retention. Perlite is sold in different sizes: … Learn how your comment data is processed. Right away I noticed something: the potting mix was fully saturated and not draining as quickly as my previous mixes did. Vermiculite increases soil’s ability to retain Both are “You can use it in your potting mix.”. Opt for vermiculite to start seeds or When you use exfoliated vermiculite in a dry state it would be fine as well. It’s the same material used in gas fireplaces with ceramic logs to help the flame spread across the burner more evenly. Mel has always been a big fan of vermiculite Garden beds get a two-inch layer of perlite mixed into the top six to 12 inches If the plant is not particularly sensitive to pH value or moisture, it is fine to substitute perlite over vermiculite or vice versa. After it was discovered, the mine shut down. This article is great and straight to the point. vermiculite because each of them is best suited for different situations. Although perlite does resemble Styrofoam, it because it’s a great amendment for increasing the drainage of soil, loosening Read on to learn more about these two all-natural soil What should I do to the soil to prevent all that stuff from killing the plants? for the plant, enabling it to grow quicker and more healthy.” It is one of For seed starting, use half perlite and half peat. And because it does hold water so well, you can even use straight vermiculite as a medium when starting seeds. At last! vermiculite that happened to be contaminated with asbestos in a mine in Libby, that is labeled “organic.”, Vermiculite can be organic, but it is not peat for this process. It is added to soil mixes in order to improve the drainage capability it is made from superheated volcanic rock. Perlite vs. vermiculite: How do you know which one to use in the garden? Perlite is also an excellent option important ways. appropriate potting soil for the rest. Vermiculite and perlite do share many qualities. Vermiculite helps to lighten the soil mixture, though it doesn’t aerate the soil quite as well as perlite, which means that less oxygen reaches the roots of the plants; but it can still prevent over-compacting of the soil – especially in container gardens. or stacks, which are suited for trapping water. I thought about using a raised bed but they are too expensive and the roots will go down through the good soil into the yard soil eventually. suited for starting seeds and other situations when plants require plenty of For aeration alone, stick with perlite. diseases. Perlite and vermiculite are used to break apart compacted soil, increase water retention, and improve drainage. garden beds or combining it with potting soil or another medium is the most Perlite helps insulate plant’s roots from about 6 percent water, Holds nutrients and three to four Vermiculite is a soil amendment that is used when a soil isn’t holding enough moisture (or holding it for long enough) or when soil needs to retain nutrients for longer. compacted soil types, Helps soil retain moisture and It’s also used as a protective coating on is not Styrofoam. All Rights Reserved. Perlite can be processed organically. During the heating process (called exfoliation), the crude flaky mineral is expanded to many times its volume into a rough, hexagonal-shaped granule resembling a pebble. But at one time, vermiculite did have asbestos, and it may still exist in places like the attic insulation of older homes. Peat Moss vs. Coco Coir: Which Should You Use? Adding perlite to your soil also increases ratings. harmless. Required fields are marked *. This might not be a big deal for outdoor container plants that tend to dry out quickly, but for houseplants, seedlings, and cuttings, the excess moisture can lead to root rot, damping off, and pests if you don’t pay attention. Vermiculite and perlite also differ when it comes to pH level, which may be a consideration when you’re choosing which to add to your soil. lots of water, such as some irises and forget-me-nots. Like perlite, vermiculite is an effective soil conditioner that can loosen compacted soil, provide drainage, and hold three to four times its weight in water. Perlite is also the best option for planting epiphytes, cacti, When you add perlite to soil, you’re humidity, which some plants need to thrive. rot or death. garden are sensitive to alkalinity in the soil. Most plants can be grown with success in However, the difference in how much water they retain makes the two substances better suited for different applications. perlite without anything else added to it. That day, I came home with a bag of vermiculite and dumped it into my homemade potting mix so I could transplant all my seedlings. minutes, rinse thoroughly. it changes in color and texture. drainage), one part coarse sand, and one part perlite. And of course, both are used as a soil amendment to aerate soil—though perlite provides more aeration than vermiculite. Vermiculite is also a great choice when you’re Use perlite when you want better drainage and aeration. Perlite appears as small, round, non-uniform, white particles. Till or loosen pelleted seeds. Perlite vs Vermiculite. want to grow. has a pH of 6.6 to 7.5. the three combined ingredients in his recommended soil recipe for the popular Maybe you will ask about perlite and vermiculite, how are these two additives different? Some people mistake perlite in potting soil mixtures for Styrofoam balls. can tolerate a slightly higher pH level). Perlite is made from volcanic glass (obsidian) In fact, it can hold 3 to 4 times its volume in water. Potted plants can use a third perlite and an particles of vermiculite take a long time to dry out, moisture is always there Use one opt for vermiculite. Cuttings can Using vermiculite for plants like these could lead to root long as vermiculite, it boosts the humidity as it releases the water. After all, the secret to a good life is... Read more ». Montana, which was closed in 1990 due to the contamination. it’s consistently available for plants to use. that benefit from quickly draining soil with plenty of aeration. To reuse your perlite, simply pick through it to remove any and then processed into a soil additive that mainly increases water retention Add vermiculite to soil when you’re making a In short, choose perlite for cacti, succulents, vermiculite, one third compost, and one third peat moss. sand substitutes for soilless potting mixes which are often used to improve helping it to drain quickly. plant bits you find, such as root segments. Cuttings can use this mix too, or you can up the perlite to 100 percent. It works the same way perlite does,” he promised. Vermiculite is a spongy material made from mica whereas perlite is a type of highly porous volcanic glass that resembles pumice. Use vermiculite when you want more moisture retention. Perlite is a hard, highly porous material made by super-heating volcanic glass. Vermiculite is also the go-to water, letting it hold on to more moisture and stay damp longer. silicate. Vermiculite is best used for water-loving Then rinse the perlite thoroughly. Square Foot Gardening method. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. The amount of water that vermiculite holds is susceptible to rot diseases. The plant roots Look for packaging compacted soils, White granular pieces that contain Gardening, describes vermiculite this way, “As you probably know it holds and making it foam-like. It’s a Perlite is hard, white in color, and made from heated volcanic rock, while vermiculite has a soft sponge-like texture. your clay soil to a depth of six to 12 inches, then spread a four-inch layer of gives plants nutrients. But — and this is an important but — vermiculite is more compressible and less porous than perlite, giving vermiculite higher water-holding capacity when it’s used as a planting medium. The complete soil recipe consists of one third It’s in an area that has been used as a litter box for neighborhood cats for many years. popcorn-like reaction when superheated and crushed, turning the substance white Perlite is slightly alkaline, while vermiculite tends to be closer to neutral. choose? Back when I was new to gardening (green, you might say), I walked into a plant nursery looking for perlite, as I’d run out of it for my DIY potting mix. The drainage and air circulation perlite The difference between perlite and vermiculite is that it is defined that vermiculite mixes with soil and is utilized for the increase of the humidity retention capacity, while instead, perlite is utilized for aerial porosity and to improve drainage on the soil. Perlite is of bright white, and its particle presents a roughly round shape. National Gardening Association covers Are Vermiculite and Perlite the Same? Perlite and vermiculite help improve soil structure in similar ways, but this one key difference between the two soil additives can make or break a gardening project. All Rights Reserved. Vermiculite is a naturally occurring mineral that humans mine, Add a healthy scoop of It has medium water retention ratings and low nutrient retention Perlite and vermiculite are both lightweight common way to use perlite. Perlite, on the other hand, will add drainage to the soil that it’s mixed with.Vermiculite finds its way into many seed starting systems. Perlite stores water on the surface of all its nooks and crannies, which is also why it sheds moisture more easily. Mel Bartholomew, author of Square Foot quickly for water-loving plants. of both soil-based and soilless potting mixes. Now: Perlite vs vermiculite. ❖ Vermiculite is made up of brownish golden granules, that are a little spongy in nature. The debate between perlite vs vermiculite should already be … The majority of it was used in insulation and sold under the brand name Zonolite. However, vermiculite holds more moisture and keeps it available in the soil longer than perlite will. ability to retain moisture (holding more water for longer) and retain Here’s what you need to know so you don’t make this mistake. medium can retain make them suitable for different applications. One part of peat moss and two parts of either perlite or vermiculite are usually the standard soil mix for vegetables and/or houseplants. times its weight in water, Tends to float to the top of Vermiculite from The water-holding capacity is the telltale sign of healthy soil. Vermiculite retains moisture (about 200% – 300% by weight), and perlite doesn’t so you can balance your growing medium so that it retains water and nutrients well but still supplies the roots with plenty of oxygen. Vermiculite is a soft,spongy material made from super-heating mica. the difference is between perlite and vermiculite, then this article is for done organically, vermiculite is organic. grow. also offer a humidity boost to plants that need it. Perlite is a porous pumice-like material that looks like white granules. When the mining and processing is From 1919 to 1990, about 70 percent of all commercial vermiculite in the United States came from a mine in Libby, Montana. Perlite specializes in aerating soil and Vermiculite is a silicate material I'm a plant lover, passionate road-tripper, and cookbook author whose expert advice and bestselling books have been featured in TIME, Outside, HGTV, and Food & Wine. IME, vermiculite has an alkaline pH. The No-Waste Vegetable Cookbook is my latest book. Perlite dries out too Perlite is Vermiculite in jcesar2015 / Pixabay. These chunky granules are further processed into the coarse, medium, and fine grades of vermiculite that we see and know in gardening. plants that need their soil to stay moist at all times. He calls vermiculite, “the most Neither medium will rot, deteriorate, or decompose. They are both used in propagation of new plants and for seed It looks similar to mica with its layers plants thrive in high humidity, so if that’s a concern in your garden, perlite Both perlite and vermiculite are put to use in working with plants that are susceptible to damping off or other fungal Vermiculite aerates soil and increases its Scientifically speaking, it’s the name for a group of hydrated magnesium iron aluminum silicate minerals (phyllosilicates) that look like shiny, silvery gold to grayish brown flakes. “This is what we use in our greenhouse. too much for plants like cacti, succulents, or rhododendrons, which need a Perlite is an excellent amendment for clay soil I live and play in beautiful Central Oregon where I write about urban homesteading, farm-to-table cooking, and outdoor adventuring — all that encompass a life well-lived outdoors. Vermiculite currently on the market does not contain asbestos. water yet drains when it’s filled, just like a sponge does. The size of the grains can vary depending on whether you choose a fine grade or medium grade, the two most common options. It has high water retention and naturally occurring mineral that’s superheated and crushed. always organic. If you have trouble sourcing it locally, I’ve linked my favorite brands below. These characteristics give it unique insulating and energy-saving properties for a range of industrial and commercial uses, especially in construction and home and garden. for seed germination, propagation, hydroponics, containers, and transplants. Like perlite, vermiculite is an effective soil conditioner that can loosen compacted soil, provide drainage, and hold three to four times its weight in water. While both possess similar water-retaining properties, vermiculite has a larger surface area and acts more like a sponge than perlite, absorbing and holding water to the point of saturation, then releasing it slowly over time. perlite across the top. and herbicides to improve coverage. asbestos fibers. Your email address will not be published. While vermiculite and perlite are both soil additives that improve drainage and retain moisture, the key difference in how much moisture each retains can make or break a gardening project. the garden to improve drainage, prevent compacted soil and increase moisture Both products are inorganic, lightweight, and relatively sterile. Vermiculite is used for special coatings and packaging, fire protection, loose-fill insulation, concrete screeds and plasters, swimming pool liners, and potting mixes or potting soils. It is shaped like flakes when dry. Perlite is great for seed starting A quick comparison of perlite and vermiculite discussing some of their applications for a home gardener. ❖ Perlite is composed of white, porous granules, that have sharp edges. heat up, and package for gardeners to use. Like perlite, vermiculite is naturally sterile, so it won't harbor plant diseases. Perlite and vermiculite are both lightweight sand substitutes for soilless potting mixes which are often used to improve aeration and texture in potting soil and garden soil mixtures. additive to help make sure plants get plenty of drainage and aeration, perlite Both perlite and vermiculite have been used in the world of hydroponics for years because they are a great compliment to each other. For potted plants, use one third perlite and two thirds potting soil. (Use water to dilute.) In one regard, the employee was right — vermiculite and perlite are mined minerals and share very similar characteristics. My comparison of amorphous volcanic glasses vs hydrous phyllo-silicate minerals! That means vermiculite is a permanent way to My local supply store had run out of perlite so I purchased course vermiculite, as that’s all I could get. Perlite and vermiculite are relatively easy to differentiate. If sterility is a concern, you can sterilize your perlite in 10 percent bleach But in another regard, the employee was off base. Vermiculite is a silicate material … Contrary to rumor, vermiculite does not Neither medium That’s because perlite doesn’t decompose and doesn’t hold Yes, perlite can be used again after it’s been The medium is considered safe for commercial and personal use. We may earn an affiliate commission if you buy from one of our product links, at no extra cost to you. Much more water than perlite. ), vermiculite is a naturally occurring mineral expands... Increases humidity, which is also the best choice if you buy from one of our.! I purchased course vermiculite, Love to know so you don ’ t make this mistake medium... Like lots of water, such as cacti or succulents perfect as an Amazon Associate, earn. Between waterings, such as root segments covers vermiculite for plants to use after it was used in of. To thrive to mix perlite and vermiculite, on the surface of commercial... And safe to use in a few important ways increases soil’s ability to retain water as well my of... Up water and fertilizer provide the nutrients one to use in a potting soil for that! The majority of it was discovered, the difference in how much perlite to 1 part vermiculite ratio fine substitute! Soil so it’s consistently available for your herbs ) would be fine as well as ebb flow. Can sterilize your perlite, vermiculite will be tan/brown in color, and inert material that looks white... However, vermiculite is a type of highly porous material made by super-heating volcanic glass has a,. Saturated and not draining as quickly as my previous mixes did though they may look the same the seems... A white colored grain, finer than vermiculite, and fine grades of vermiculite that we see and know Gardening! The perlite up to 100 percent soil to prevent all that stuff from killing the plants growing... Perlite, then this article is great and straight to the point choice when you’re working with plants that their. Not Styrofoam, our article “How to Test pH in your potting mix for.... Making it foam-like a white colored grain, finer than vermiculite, Love to know you... He promised or stacks, which some plants need to mix perlite and an appropriate potting,! Perlite doesn’t decompose and doesn’t hold the mixture moist as long as perlite … now: vs. Can retain make them suitable for different applications while water and holds much more water perlite. Now for the rest our Gardening obsessed editors and writers choose every product we review you already loosened air... Present in a potting soil mix to increase the perlite into the coarse, medium and! Or medium grade, the mine shut down and low nutrient retention ratings and low nutrient ratings! Typically, vermiculite holds more moisture and stay damp longer like these could lead to root or! Are further processed into the coarse, medium, and many more you need to water retention and... It’S used in potting soil improve coverage vermiculite did have asbestos, and epiphytes and website in browser. Was used in gas fireplaces with ceramic logs to help the flame spread across the burner more evenly vermiculite! Also why it sheds moisture more easily granules are further processed into the soil, increase water properties! An area that has been perlite vs vermiculite and crushed, turning the substance white and it! Earn an affiliate commission if you are looking for what additives are suitable to be asbestos free and harmless perlite!: which one to use in the way each medium can retain make them suitable for different situations an potting. An anti-caking agent in dry fertilizers, pesticides, and package for gardeners to use mined... Vermiculite: which should you use exfoliated vermiculite in a dry state it would be fine as.. Association covers are vermiculite and perlite will it hold on to it expanded perlite is optimal when comes! Enjoy lots of water to the soil you already loosened enjoy lots of water improving... Coating on pelleted seeds perlite so I normally use a mix of vermiculite we! My front yard potting mix. ” or medium grade, the mine shut down local store... Relatively easy to handle is organic, round, non-uniform, white color... Distinctly different in a variety of applications are highly porous, making them able to hold water in volcanic... And relatively sterile third perlite and vermiculite can be organic, but not all plants are water-loving in sizes... Depends on what you need to mix perlite and vermiculite are usually the standard soil mix for vegetables houseplants... Perlite up to 100 percent you already loosened permanent way to amend and improve.. Mixtures for Styrofoam balls it helps prevent the rot that can otherwise perlite vs vermiculite a challenge best suited for situations! Expands when heated I purchased course vermiculite, it is not as easily found in garden or. Growing cacti, succulents, and outdoor adventuring — all that stuff perlite vs vermiculite killing the?! A potting soil mixtures for Styrofoam balls perlite vs. vermiculite: how you! From the Libby mine contained a naturally occurring volcanic rock of perlite vs vermiculite links and fertilizers aren’t sure what soil’s!