7 Best Perlite Review And Guide
Did you know that growing food in your garden is the best way to cut your grocery bill? Growing food in your garden gives you all the nutrients the body needs to thrive. This is made successful by incorporating perlite in the soil mix.
Perlite is a glass formed under intense heat. It is a naturally occurring mineral that exists as a type of volcanic glass. Excavated perlite consist; 75% silicon dioxide, aluminium oxide, iron oxide, calcium oxide, magnesium oxide, sodium oxide, and up to 5% water. All these components are essential for a healthy plant. Perlite is used in gardening, hydroponics plastering, ceiling tiles, and masonry. When processed for gardening purposes, it resembles “volcanic popcorns.”
Table of Contents
Benefits of Perlite
- Inert and stable: It is highly stable and retains its original shape in the soil mixture. Also, it does not change the PH or mineral balance in the soil.
- Inorganic: It is entirely inorganic and contains no harmful chemicals and does not transfer diseases.
- Neutral pH: perlite pH ranges between 6.5 and 7.5, which is the ideal range for plants to take up nutrients. The neutral ph takes up the acidity or alkalinity of the soil.
- Lightweight: it is lighter than other aggregates used to improve soil drainage. It also offers ease of handling and carriage.
- Porosity: perlite is a highly porous and permeable material. It offers good water retention and movement within the soil mixture. Improved drainage leaves the soil with the optimum moisture needed to spur growth.
- Rich in nutrients: It contains a variety of nutrients ranging from Calcium, sodium, magnesium, and other trace elements.
- Inexpensive: It is readily available for purchase at garden stores and cheaper compared to other substances.
- Improves aeration: It is an excellent material to enhance aeration of the roots system. The texture of perlite allows it to hold more air in between the particles without compaction. This helps reduce the lack of oxygen in the soil or growing medium.
- Washable: Perlite is washed, dried to restore its Ph. If the substance is infested with pests, all the grower does is clean the perlite and sterilize it to get rid of pests.
10 Best Perlite In The Market
Perlite is processed by exposing hydrated laminar mineral to excess heat. For horticulture, Perlite is heated, expanding into accordion shaped pellets that are golden brown. It is odourless, non-toxic, sterile, and does not rot.
Uses of Perlite in the garden.
- For soil conditioning. Perlite is used to loosen soil structure, improving drainage and aeration.
- Root cuttings. It helps maintain air- moisture capacity that is essential for newly formed roots.
- For potted plants. It helps the imitate the ground growing conditions.
- As a growing medium, it helps in the absorption of minerals and water necessary for plant growth.
- For germination. Perlite can be used alone, with peat, and or with compost. It helps accelerate the growth of seedlings, easily removed without damage to the developing roots.
- Newly seeded lawn. It is mixed with the soil in the lawn and used to germinate the seeds. It hastens germination while increasing the number of seeds that germinate.
Pros And Cons Of Perlite
- ph neutral around 7.0
- sterile reducing the risk of roots dumping off or rotting
- high water retention for moisture-loving plants
- great for plant propagation and germination
- reusable since it will not decompose
- due to the platy structure, it has a high cation exchange capacity that holds on to nutrients.
- It is used alone or combined with other media.
- Perlite holds on water and starts to soak up like a sponge
- It is non-renewable
- It is not easy to find in a retail gardening shop.
Reviews of the best perlite brands in the market.
1. Espoma PR8 8-Quart Organic Perlite
Espoma is one of the best brands in the market. The item weighs 1.2 pounds and is highly recommended for use on seeds or blending custom potting mix. Also, it is used in hydroponics or plastering purposes.
For potting uses, one part of Espoma PR8 is mixed with one part of the soil. It helps improve soil aeration, promoting root growth—improved airflow between ground and atmosphere. Airflow is essential in maintaining an excellent natural habitat for garden inhabitants. Airflow boost plant heat stresses tolerance. In hot durations, the effects of heat stress on the plant are cushioned by the consistent and adequate air circulation.
Espoma helps reduce compaction in the soil. It loosens the soil by improving the texture of heavy silt or clay soils. Compacted soils are bulk, leading to reduces water infiltration. Compaction also suppresses root tips affecting their growth. This material helps to improve aeration and drainage, improving root structure and development.
Due to the perlite’s porous structure, plant roots can grow in length and spread quickly in either direction with minimal physical resistance. The pores in this material give the roots capillaries anchorage.
Espoma is pure, with no added additives. This guarantees the natural benefits of the perlite. It contains nutrients essential for the plants. By providing an optimal balance between water and air, Espoma perlite ensures healthy plants translating to good yields. This product is just what you need to improve the soil.
2. Miracle-Gro Perlite, eight qt.
Miracle-Gro is purely natural and free from diseases, insects, and weed. It is also accessible from organic contaminants that are usually infested with pests and diseases. The natural state eliminates the need for additive and chemicals used to stop or prevent diseases.
Enriched with Miracle-Gro Plant Food, the product provides the plant with essential nutrients. It improves aeration and drainage in all soil types. With this, the plants can root at a higher rate reducing the risk of damping off. Healthier roots translate to a healthy plant that all growers anticipate.
Waterlogging is impossible with the use of this product. By providing an optimum air moisture balance, a sound drainage system is achieved. Overwatering leads to compacted soils that are hard to work with or roots to penetrate through. When the perlite is added to the ground, the aggregated soil particles are broken down, improving aeration.
The lightweight nature of the product makes it suitable for root cuttings. Cuttings usually benefit from well-aerated soil with ample oxygen and water balance. This allows air to reach the newly formed roots allowing a new plant to sprout. The waterlogged medium prevents cuttings from fully developing since oxygen can not get the base of the plant.
It is, however, only suitable for potting mixtures. It is easier to handle and store compared to other aggregates. Due to the inorganic nature, it is stable and does not compose hence free from pest. All these characteristics make Miracle-Gro virtually timeless and worth investing in.
3. Organic Perlite by Perfect Plants — 1qt
Do you need perfect plant perlite? Perlite by the organic brand is simply the way to go. This pure mix is porous, creating air pockets that alleviate stress on roots. It does not compact on the soil; neither does it allow the soil to compact. By loosening the soil, it will enable the right air balance and flow.
This product will not decompose, making it suitable for potted plants. Decomposition allows pests and diseases to thrive well in the soil. By minimizing the risk of diseases, the grower is assured of a healthy plant as well as stress-free farming. For organic gardening, plants that are free from pests tend to produce higher yields compared to those that are heavily infested.
Organic perlite decreases the risk of over logging. Logged soils are at risk of contracting root diseases. By holding water directly where roots can access it, this product assists in flushing out toxins or minimizing toxins’ availability in the soil. This increases the nutrients and water retention capacity of the soil or growing medium.
When growing plants in the container, perlite helps imitate natural ground conditions that are suitable for plant growth. The addition of organic perlite helps the soil drain naturally. When the roots are healthy, the stem can deliver nutrients to all parts of the plant. This enhances growth from the beginning of plant germination to fruiting. To improve the total absorption of nutrients, consider organic perlite mix.
4. xGarden 8 Quarts Horticultural Grade Premium Perlite
This 8 quarts of premium grade perlite is suitable for horticultural and container gardening. It enhances good soil aeration that is beneficial for healthy roots. Stronger roots emerge from aerated soils due to more intake of nutrients. Roots are able to develop tolerance from heat and drought when the soil is well aerated.
It enhances water retention. Water retention relates to the amount of water available for crop use after drainage. Increasing water holding capacity in the soil takes up to 3 years, but perlite helps shorten the timing by almost instant results. It improves moisture retention, instantly optimizing crop production. The grower’s goal is to maintain the field at or near capacity, which is possible with perlite use.
The mixture is Ph neutral, influencing the availability of available nutrients. Most horticultural crops prefer a suitable ph of between 6.5 to 7.5. soils with a ph higher than 7 tend to have less iron due to the acidity levels. Plants develop yellowish-green foliage due to iron deficiency. This, in turn, leads to low plant growth and reduced produce.
It is non-toxic and sterile, eliminating the risk of pests and diseases. In the case of diseases in the soil, mix with perlite, sterilize the mixture and continue with the horticultural practice free from disease. This product meets all your horticultural needs and requires no additives for it to perform best. One-time buyer of this product means less time buying and predictable crop.
5. Organic 10 Quarts Coarse Perlite for All Plants
This perlite brand is not only great for gardening but also hydroponics. It helps anchor plants for the hydroponic grow cycle by blocking light from reaching the hydroponic media. It remains stable and does not break down; hence can be washed, dried, and reused. It remains in perfect conditions even after reusing for several growing cycles.
Organic perlite is stable, Oduor less, and safe to use. Its lightweight nature enables easy handling and storage. The structure of the perlite ensures good aeration for the roots. This reduces soil compaction, enhances optimal water and nutrient intake, and reduces waterlogging. Perlite speeds uprooting by providing an optimum balance of air and water. All these characteristics are beneficial for home and commercial plant growth.
It balances the media or soil ph to about 6.5 to 7.5. gardeners clearly understand the relationship between plant ph and plant growth. Acidity in the soil minimizes the nutrient uptake as well as denatures enzymes in the soil. This product reduces excess acidity and prevents soil pests due to its natural and inorganic state.
Every grower is key to yields or good quality produce. With Organic CZ perlite, the root temperature is moderate, and there is no worry about regulating the soil heat. It also provides a home for beneficial bacteria to colonize and help plants meet their optimum field capacity. It also facilitates a successful mechanical filtration in the hydroponic system. This helps in reducing diseases and maintaining nutrient levels.
6. GMPER100L PLANT!T Super Coarse Perlite, 100 L/3.53 cu ft
Do you need perlite that is sterile and free from diseases? GMPER100L PLANT!T provides stable perlite that is safe for use in indoor and outdoor gardening due to its low density. It is subjected to extremes heat that makes it expand, becoming lighter in weight. This expansion creates a neutral ph with small bubbles that help balance the soil or growth medium own ph.
The structured popcorn particles are covered with tiny cavities that provide a large surface area for air and water passage. This ensures that the soil or growing medium has an adequate water retention capacity. Water retention helps improve soil structure, porosity, infiltration, and bulk density. The amount of water that a soil can hold for crop use is closely related to optimal crop production.
The coarse perlite has a high air porosity that allows plants to breathe well. This is due to the proper drainage of the soil. The coarse perlite is suitable in hydroponics since it will not blow away compared to the fine perlite. This product helps propagate plants through cuttings since the roots grow as the plant forage for water. This leads to the accelerated growth of the plant.
It is often used for horticultural purposes due to the low density. It creates a stable soil structure that translates to loose, well-drained, and aerated soils. It is also free from diseases and pests hence safe to use in all types of farming practices. Smart gardening is possible with GMPER100L PLANT!T Super Coarse Perlite.
7. Viagrow VPER4 4 cu. ft Perlite, 1-Pack, White
Viagrow perlite, made in America, is the most sustainable and perfect for greenhouse growing and propagation. Due to the mineral heating during processing, perlite expands in volume, resulting in the stable inorganic material. The material does not break down, nor does it decompose. This explains its lengthy lifespan safety.
The heating creates a mineral with a neutral ph. It helps balance the soil ph creating an optimum condition for the crop. Another plus is that the grower does not need other products to balance the ph. This perlite brand provides all the plant need and saves on production cost.
Organic hydroponic systems are possible with viagrow perlite. They help create a healthy organic mixture that bacteria useful to the plant can thrive. However, it can be mixed with organic compost to improve roots anchorage. Well anchored roots are healthy and strong, leads to better crop production.
The expanded particles increase volume by 20 times. This creates extra space for roots to absorb water and nutrients. For proper drainage, 25% of perlite is mixed with soil to improve water retention and aeration. Viagrow perlite is a perfect choice for seed germination and cutting propagation.
Due to the excellent drainage trait of perlite media, it is best compared to vermiculate. Perlite is used in root cuttings, germination, soil-less farming, indoor and outdoor farming. The listed brands of perlite are an invaluable asset to the grower as well as the horticulture industry.
Frequently asked questions and answers.
Question: Is perlite organic?
Answer: NO! perlite comes from ingenious rock that is superheated to expand and form the material.
Question: Can you use perlite for growing mushrooms?
Answer: Yes, indeed, for all crops you intent to grow.
Question: Does it have fertilizer in it?
Answer: No! its just perlite.
Question: Do you mix the perlite with the soil, or should it be an entirely separate layer underneath the soil?
Answer: Perlite should be thorough with the soil.
Question: Can you transplant a crop with perlite.
Answer: Yes. Perlite contains no fertilizer that could burn the plant.