Whether you are a novice or a master at collecting houseplants, you have certainly come across the snake plant. While they do not require a lot of care, they do require a good potting soil mix in order to thrive.
Also known as Dracaena trifasciata, snake plants are slow-growing plants that are a fantastic addition to pretty much any living space. They are known to have many beneficial properties and have a positive symbolic meaning in many cultures.
Down below, we will talk about the best potting soil mix, its impacts on plant health, and the best components for a snake plant potting mix.
How Does Soil Impact the Plant’s Health
As we’ve mentioned earlier, the right soil will make or break a plant’s progress. The correct potting soil will ensure that the plant receives key nutrients, moisture, and good aeration. It will also provide the snake plant with the firm base it needs to grow a strong root system. So, what are some of the components that will make a good snake plant potting mix?
1. Potting Soil
This will be the base for your mix. You want light and well-aerated soil with organic and aged natural matter. Be aware that potting soil is different than potting mix,
2. Sphagnum Peat Moss
Sphagnum peat moss will provide great water retention and help keep nutrients in your soil. Moreover, it will provide better aeration.
3. Coco Coir
Coco coir is made from coconut husks. Its texture is similar to that of peat moss. However, it will compact more over time.
4. Pine Bark Fines
Bark fines are commonly made out of firs, pines, and spruces because their bark contains high amounts of lignin. This makes it fantastic at fighting compaction and creating pockets of air that will help your plant roots breathe.
Perlite looks a lot like styrofoam, but it’s actually a volcanic glass. The substance is very lightweight and doesn’t absorb water, so it provides fantastic aeration and drainage.
6. Soil pH
Another important aspect you have to look at is the soil pH. Unlike most plants, snake plants like slightly acidic soil. Considering that neutral pH is 7.0, you should keep your snake plant mix at a 5.5 – 7.5 pH level. To maintain this level you can add coffee grounds to your compost pile. And, although snake plants love acid, you should avoid applying the coffee grounds directly onto your plant – make sure to mix it into the soil.
DIY Potting Soil Mixes for Snake Plants
Two of the best potting soil mix recipes are made up of:
|Potting Soil Mix Option 1||Potting Soil Mix Option 2|
|1 part coarse sand or perlite||2 parts coarse sand or perlite|
|1 part pine bark fines||1 part peat moss or coconut coir|
|1 part coco coir||1 part garden soil or potting mix|
|3 parts potting soil with sphagnum peat moss|
It is important to note that you shouldn’t use garden soil for plants that you are growing indoors. You should also remember that the soil you use must be well-draining and loose so that when you decide to repot or transplant your plant in the future, it will take little-to-no effort.
How to Make the DIY Potting Soil Mixes
To make these mixes, you simply add all the above ingredients in a big container and add water until it’s moist. Then mix everything together and put a layer at the bottom of your pot. After that, place your root ball inside the planter and add the rest of the soil, filling up to an inch or two below the rim of your pot. Remember not to pat down too hard or you’ll accidentally pack the mix too tightly preventing proper aeration
Best Pre-Mixed Soils for Snake Plants
If you do not feel comfortable mixing your own potting soil, then you shouldn’t worry — down below you will find our favorite pre-mixed soils that work great for snake plants.
This is one of the most popular brands in gardening. They have a fantastic cactus, palm, and citrus potting mixes. The blend contains perlite and sand, as well as some woodland-based ingredients, thus creating a fast-draining and nutrient filled environment.
Alternatively, you can check it out on Amazon.
2. rePotme Cactus Soil Mix or Succulent Soil Mix
rePotme offers customers a rich handmade mix. Some of the ingredients used are pieces of bark, pumice, diatomaceous earth, and stalite, all of which provide the mix with a very effective natural pest control.
3. Ocean Forest Potting Soil
This potting soil contains sphagnum peat moss blended with earthworm castings, forest humus, and sandy loam. Moreover, its pH is adjusted to 6.3 – 6.8 which will allow optimum fertilizer uptake.
Alternatively, you can check it out on Amazon.
If you are not a fan of the three we mentioned, then you might want to take a look at cactus soil. However, you will have to consider adding small amounts of compost in order to enhance the nutrition your snake plant gets.
Do Containers Matter?
The simple answer is yes. Snake plants will thrive best in terracotta pots with multiple drainage holes. This way, moisture retention will not be an issue. Terracotta pots are also strong enough so snake plant roots will not warp or crack them.
However, we should note that snake plants prefer to grow tightly in their pots. Therefore, you should only go up by one pot size when repotting. Furthermore, they don’t require a deep pot, since this will allow for root rot to develop because water will amass at the bottom.
Potting Soil Makes All the Difference
While snake plants are quite hardy and aren’t high maintenance, there are still some things that they need in order to thrive. One of the most important factors is potting soil. It has to be light and well-draining due to the risk of root rot. Cactus blends are an excellent option because of the drainage they provide. However, if this is not an option, you can always use a standard mix that contains peat moss, sand, or perlite.
Hopefully, this article brought some clarity about which potting soil to use for your snake plants. If you have questions, please ask in the comment section down below! Don’t forget to share this article with your family and friends!