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7 Best Potting Mix For Orchids In 2023 | Reviews & Buyer’s Guide

Do you want to make your neighbors envy your garden? Then try growing a few exotic orchids!

cymbidium orchid flower

They make good houseplants, thanks to their vibrant flowers and splendid shapes. Now, there are different types of orchids, but the most common among them is the phalaenopsis orchid. 

Anyhow, they are considered to be very hard to grow and even harder to maintain. You need to water them correctly and use the appropriate potting soil mix. The latter holds considerable importance because it provides nutrition and support to the plant, helping the flowers to bloom.

If you start looking, you will come across dozens of orchid soil mixes. So, to help you make the right choice, we have listed 8 of the best orchid potting mixes.

Without further ado, let’s dig in!

Best Potting Mix For Orchids

Potted orchids on counter in store. Phalaenopsis flowers of different colors. Potting Mix For Orchids.

Whether you are a seasoned orchid enthusiast or a beginner, finding the right potting mix is essential for your plant's well-being. So, without further ado, here's the list of the 7 best potting mixes for orchids to help you nurture and showcase the natural beauty of your orchid collection.

1. Miracle-Gro Orchid Potting Mix Coarse Blend - Best for Fast Growth

When it comes to soils and potting mixes for plants, very few brands can match the quality of Miracle-Gro. And that is why we have included their coarse blend orchid potting mix on our list. It is a high-quality potting soil that supports all types of orchid plants and ensures their fast growth.

Orchid Potting Mix, 8-Quarts Orchid Plant Food Mist, Orchid...
  • Miracle-Gro Orchid Potting Mix, 8-Quart- Coarse blend for...
  • Feeds up to six months, use when potting or repotting orchid...

Why Did We Like It?

As a relatively affordable potting mix, the Coarse blend orchid potting mix is a pretty great choice for your orchids. The coarse blending of the soil ensures that there is enough aeration available for the orchid’s roots. In addition, it allows for proper drainage, which is crucial for root growth and development.

Each unit contains 8 quarts of soil mix, which provides excellent value for money. It also includes traces of fertilizer that act as a food supply so your orchid can grow faster.

The soil mix has enough nutrients to feed your plant for 6 months. Moreover, it is pretty versatile, considering that it can be used for all types of epiphyte orchids, such as phalaenopsis, epidendrum, cattleya, and dendrobium. 

What Could’ve Been Better?

The Miracle-Gro orchid potting mix is a pretty versatile and high-quality soil mix that you can use for your orchid plants. However, you should keep in mind that it is not entirely organic. As mentioned, it contains trace amounts of fertilizers to feed the plants.



Pros

  • Comes at a low price
  • Provides good aeration and drainage
  • Ensures fast growth and development of the plant
  • Can be used for potted and garden orchids




Cons

  • Not entirely organic



Composition: Coarse blend of fir bark, sphagnum moss, and perlite | Moisture Retention: Moderate to High | Drainage: Excellent | Nutrient Content: Contains fertilizer | Size: 8 quarts

2. Sun Bulb Better Gro Special Orchid Mix - Best for Versatility

Next, we have considered the 50000 better gro special orchid mix from the Sun Bulb brand. It is a popular potting mix for orchids formulated by a team of trained and specialized orchid growers. The formula can be used on most orchid types to promote growth. 

Better-Gro Special Orchid Mix - Premium Grade Orchid Bark...
  • Multi purpose potting mixture for growing Cattleyas,...
  • A Dynamic combination of western fir bark, hardwood charcoal...

Why Did We Like It?

This orchid soil mix is made of a dynamic combination of hardwood charcoal, western fir bark, and sponge rocks. It provides a highly nutritious soil medium that is suitable for the healthy growth of your orchids.

The hardwood charcoal and sponge rocks also ensure that the soil is adequately ventilated for the roots. They improve soil drainage and prevent the accumulation of excessive moisture so that the orchid roots have sufficient room to grow.

Furthermore, it is an excellent choice for both hobbyists and professional orchid growers due to its versatility. It can be used for a large number of epiphyte orchids like phalaenopsis, oncidiums, paphiopedilums, cattleyas, or dendrobiums. Moreover, the 4 quarts of soil mix are sufficient to cover a small or medium garden, providing good value for money.

What Could’ve Been Better?

Overall, this soil mix is an excellent choice due to its versatility and consistency. However, while using it, we noticed that it attracts pests and bugs. This can affect your plant’s growth, so we suggest that you use a suitable pesticide or a bug spray along with it.



Pros

  • Comprised of natural components
  • Provides good ventilation for the roots
  • Contains sufficient nutrients for rapid growth
  • Highly versatile




Cons

  • Can attract pests and bugs



Composition: Chunky mix of western fir bark, hardwood, charcoal, and sponge rock | Moisture Retention: Moderate to High | Drainage: Excellent | Nutrient Content: Contains fertilizer | Size: 4 quarts

3. Perfect Plants All Natural Orchid Potting Mix - Best for Indoor Pots

As the name suggests, the all-natural orchid potting mix by Perfect Plants is composed of natural components. It is a hand-mixed soil that emulates the natural soil environment of phalaenopsis orchids, ensuring that they can grow and bloom quickly.

Sale
All Natural Orchid Potting Mix 4qts. by Perfect Plants |...
  • 💓 ALL PURPOSE MIX — Made with Charcoal, Sponge Rock,...
  • 🔗 ROOTS CAN CLIMB — Orchid Roots love to climb and...

Why Did We Like It?

This orchid potting mix is formulated with charcoal, pine bark, coconut chips, and sponge rock. All of these components are naturally sourced, which provides a conducive medium for the orchid to proliferate.

The presence of charcoal and coconut chips ensures that there is proper aeration and ventilation for the roots. It provides excellent drainage that prevents excessive moisture buildup in the roots. As a result, the roots can expand and climb quickly.

Each unit comes with 4 quarts of soil mix that is sufficient for a small or medium orchid garden. Furthermore, it comes packaged in a resealable, heavy-duty bag that preserves the quality of this mix. This also allows you to safely store the soil mix for later use.

What Could’ve Been Better?

Despite being made of high-quality natural components, this orchid potting mix lacks versatility. In other words, you can mainly use it for phalaenopsis orchids and small to medium gardens. It’s not ideal for larger gardens, and you may face difficulty in growing other types of orchids with it.



Pros

  • Provides natural soil conditions for quick growth
  • Has adequate drainage and ventilation
  • Allows orchid roots to expand and climb
  • Can be easily stored




Cons

  • It is not very versatile



Composition: Mix of medium-grade fir bark and coconut husk chips | Moisture Retention: Moderate | Drainage: Good | Nutrient Content: Contains slow-release fertilizer and beneficial microorganisms | Size: 4 quarts

4. RePotme Dark Imperial Orchid Potting Mix

RePotme is a renowned brand that produces high-quality garden supplies, especially for exotic houseplants. The Monterey dark imperial orchid potting mix is proof of the brand’s quality. It is handcrafted and mixed by professionals and contains all the necessary components for the healthy growth of your orchids.

rePotme Orchid Potting Mix - Phalaenopsis Monterey Dark...
  • ✔ Premier Orchid Bark Potting Mix. Works with Any Orchid...
  • 🌸 Excellent Orchid Potting Mix - Drains Well, Protecting...

Why Did We Like It?

The most prominent feature of this potting mix is that it is made from high-quality ingredients - hand-blended by experts. It contains all the nutrients necessary for the growth of the orchid plant. Therefore, it is a premium quality mix that can be used by both hobbyists and professionals.

It is suitable for phalaenopsis orchids, as its ingredients provide adequate natural aeration. This allows the roots to expand, which, in turn, accelerates the growth of the plant. Conversely, it prevents the roots from rotting by draining away excess moisture from the soil. The ingredients also minimize the growth of pathogens that can harm the roots.

Moreover, it is blended in small quantities to ensure the highest levels of quality. And it comes packaged in a resealable pouch that retains its freshness and quality for a long time. 

What Could’ve Been Better?

Without a doubt, this soil mix by RePotme is of a premium quality that contains all the necessary components for growing healthy orchid plants. However, it comes in relatively small quantities, which is insufficient for large gardens. And if you want to purchase sufficient amounts, the price will be pretty high.



Pros

  • Hand mixing ensures the highest quality
  • Comes freshly packed in re-sealable pouches
  • Easy to store for a long time
  • Prevents the growth of pathogens and rotting of roots




Cons

  • Purchasing sufficient quantities can be expensive



Composition: Mixture of aged New Zealand Monterey pine bark and sphagnum moss | Moisture Retention: Moderate to High | Drainage: Excellent | Nutrient Content: Contains slow-release fertilizer and natural additives | Size: 2 quarts

5. Espoma OR4 Organic Orchid Mix Potting Soil

Espoma is one of the leading names in manufacturing high-quality, organic garden supplies. With considerable experience in this market, this brand has carved a niche for itself. And the OR4 organic mix potting soil is a testament to this fact. It is an organic soil mix that provides optimal growth conditions for orchids.

Sale
Espoma OR4 Organic Orchid Mix Potting Soil, 4-Quart (2)
  • Improves drainage and aeration
  • For orchids and bromeliads

Why Did We Like It?

This organic orchid potting mix contains aged pine bark, perlite, horticultural grade charcoal, limestone, and yucca extract. All of these ingredients are naturally sourced and aim to provide an ideal soil medium for the growth of orchids. Consequently, it can be used for all types of orchids, which makes it a highly versatile choice.

Besides, it provides good soil aeration and drainage so that the roots do not suffocate. The charcoal eliminates any salt and pathogens from the soil, which protects them from damage. Subsequently, the limestone helps in maintaining an optimal pH level that is suitable for rapid growth. 

In addition, it comes with a proprietary myco-tone blend, which consists of 11 different mycorrhizal fungal strains. These beneficial fungal strains provide nutrition to the soil organically, thereby eliminating the need for artificial fertilizers.

What Could’ve Been Better?

The OR4 can be considered a premium potting soil mix, due to which it is relatively more expensive than most of our previous options. So, if you are on a tight budget, this might not be the most feasible option for you.



Pros

  • The soil mix is purely organic
  • It does not require any additional fertilizers
  • Highly versatile for growing different orchid types
  • Provides optimal soil conditions for a healthy orchid plant




Cons

  • Relatively expensive



Composition: Mixture of aged New Zealand Monterey pine bark and sphagnum moss | Moisture Retention: Moderate to High | Drainage: Excellent | Nutrient Content: Contains slow-release fertilizer and natural additives | Size: 2 quarts

6. Perfect Plants Organic Orchid Potting Mix

For this review, we have the organic orchid potting mix, which is another all-natural soil mix from Perfect Plants. The quality of this soil mix demonstrates why Perfect Plants is one of the most recognizable brands in the market. It is entirely organic and is best suited for growing your orchids in indoor pots.

All Natural Orchid Potting Mix by Perfect Plants - 1 Quart...
  • 💓 ALL PURPOSE MIX — Made with Charcoal, Sponge Rock,...
  • 🔗 ROOTS CAN CLIMB — Orchid Roots love to climb and...

Why Did We Like It?

This potting mix consists of four organic constituents, which are charcoal, pine barks, coconut chips, and perlite. There are no artificial ingredients or chemicals that can affect the plant’s health. Furthermore, these components make it usable for multiple orchid types, which improves its versatility.

Each unit contains 1 quart of soil mix, which makes it perfect for use in indoor orchid pots. The pine barks and coconut chips ensure sufficient aeration and drainage so that the roots have the room necessary to climb and grow. Conversely, charcoal eliminates any salts and prevents the growth of pathogens that can damage the root.

Furthermore, it is packaged in re-sealable, heavy-duty bags, which can retain the nutrients for a long time. It also makes it easy to store the soil mix for later use.

What Could’ve Been Better?

While it is excellent for potted orchid plants, it doesn’t contain sufficient soil mix for garden use. It only provides 1 quart of orchid soil mix, which will be inadequate if you have a large or medium garden. And to buy sufficient quantities, the costs may increase considerably.



Pros

  • Does not have any harmful chemicals or fertilizers
  • Great for indoor orchid pots
  • Has sufficient aeration and drainage
  • Can be used for all types of orchids




Cons

  • Not sufficient for use in large gardens



Composition: Mix of premium grade orchid bark, coconut coir, and charcoal | Moisture Retention: Moderate to High | Drainage: Excellent | Nutrient Content: Contains slow-release fertilizer and beneficial microorganisms | Size: 1, 4, and 8 quarts

7. Black Gold SunGro Orchid Mix

Black Gold is a relatively smaller and lesser-known brand that manufactures horticultural supplies. However, their SunGro orchid mix is a pretty impressive soil mix that is ideal for indoor orchid plants. In addition, its ingredients make it suitable to be used for different types of orchids. 

SunGro Black Gold Indoor Natural and Organic Orchid Potting...
  • INDOOR USE: Ideal to use for indoor containers or...
  • GREAT FOR: Perfect for growing terrestrial and...

Why Did We Like It?

We were pretty impressed by the quality and versatility of this soil mix. It comprises a wide range of all-natural ingredients, which can provide a perfect soil medium for your orchid. Besides, you can use it for most orchid types, and not just phalaenopsis orchids, which makes it quite versatile as well.

The bark and horticultural grade perlite helps to retain adequate water for the roots. Conversely, the cinders, pumice, and sphagnum peat moss help in draining excess water that prevents root rot. They also improve the aeration of the soil, which provides room for the roots to develop. And lastly, the added dolomite lime helps in maintaining a balanced pH level.

Furthermore, each unit contains 8 quarts of soil mix, which can be used for several orchid pots or even medium to large gardens. And you can also use it for both terrestrial and semi-terrestrial orchid plants.

What Could’ve Been Better?

While it does include all the necessary components to grow a healthy orchid plant, we found it to be quite dense because of this aspect. As a result, if used in small pots, it can sometimes retain excess water or hamper root growth, which can be counterproductive.



Pros

  • Highly versatile to use
  • Suitable for both terrestrial and semi-terrestrial plants
  • Provides good drainage and aeration
  • Helps to maintain the soil’s pH




Cons

  • Too dense, especially for small pots



Composition: Blend of Canadian sphagnum peat moss, bark, and perlite | Moisture Retention: Moderate to High | Drainage: Excellent | Nutrient Content: Contains slow-release fertilizer and natural additives | Size: 8 quarts

Best Potting Mix For Orchids Comparison Table

ProductCompositionMoisture RetentionDrainageNutrient ContentSize
Miracle-Gro Orchid Potting Mix Coarse BlendCoarse blend of fir bark, sphagnum moss, and perliteModerate to HighExcellentContains fertilizer8 quarts
Sun Bulb Better Gro Special Orchid MixChunky mix of western fir bark, hardwood, charcoal, and sponge rockModerate to HighExcellentContains fertilizer4 quarts
Perfect Plants All Natural Orchid Potting MixMix of medium-grade fir bark and coconut husk chipsModerateGoodContains slow-release fertilizer and beneficial microorganisms4 quarts
RePotme Dark Imperial Orchid Potting MixMixture of aged New Zealand Monterey pine bark and sphagnum mossModerate to HighExcellentContains slow-release fertilizer and natural additives2 quarts
Espoma OR4 Organic Orchid Mix Potting SoilBlend of sphagnum peat moss, perlite, earthworm castings, and dolomitic limestoneModerate to HighGoodContains organic fertilizer and beneficial microorganisms4 quarts
Perfect Plants Organic Orchid Potting MixMix of premium grade orchid bark, coconut coir, and charcoalModerate to HighExcellentContains slow-release fertilizer and beneficial microorganisms1, 4, and 8 quarts
Black Gold SunGro Orchid MixBlend of Canadian sphagnum peat moss, bark, and perliteModerate to HighExcellentContains slow-release fertilizer and natural additives8 quarts

Potting Mix For Orchids Buying Guide

Buying Guide For The Best Potting Mix For Orchids

And that was our list of the top 8 potting mixes for orchids. Have you decided on which one you want to get for your orchids?

Choosing the most suitable potting mix for your orchid plants is not as simple as it seems. So, if you are still confused after going through our list, we completely understand. With so many options available on the market, it is easy to become overwhelmed. Besides, you need to take into account different factors before making your final purchase.

That is why we have prepared this brief buyer’s guide for you. It contains some of the critical factors that you should consider before you buy a potting mix for your orchid plants.

So, if you want to know what these factors are, read on.

  1. Type Of Orchid

Before you buy an orchid soil mix, it is important to consider what type of orchid plants you have. Orchid plants have high diversity, due to which there are numerous types of orchids that exist, with the most common ones being phalaenopsis, cattleya, and dendrobium.

Each orchid type requires specific soil conditions to grow, without which they may wither or not bloom properly. That is why determining your orchid type is crucial before starting to look for a soil mix.

  1. Aeration

Ample aeration is vital to ensure the growth of your orchid. It prevents the roots from suffocating and provides sufficient room for the roots to expand in the soil.

In their native habitats, orchid plants can grow best in slightly dry soil. This can be facilitated through proper aeration. Furthermore, orchid roots can sometimes remain exposed, and aerated soil aims to mimic that condition.

Materials such as perlite, charcoal, and tree bark facilitate aeration. So, you should look for these ingredients when choosing a potting mix.

  1. Drainage

Besides aeration, adequate drainage is another essential factor to consider. It is vital for the development of the plant, as suitable amounts of water are necessary for its growth. However, excessive water can be detrimental to the plant, as it increases the soil moisture and suffocates the roots. 

Therefore, it is important that the potting mix you choose has good drainage. It should be able to retain only the necessary amount of water while eliminating any excess. For this, you should look out for ingredients like perlite, charcoal, or sphagnum moss in the soil mix, as they help in drainage.

  1. Ingredients

The right soil ingredients can make all the difference in the development of an orchid plant. So, you should make sure that the soil mix contains all the necessary ingredients for its proper growth. 

Typically, most potting mixes come with ingredients such as charcoal, perlite, wood bark, or coconut husk. These help in the aeration and drainage of the soil. However, some potting mixes may include vermiculites, lava rocks, sphagnum moss, or fertilizers for better growth.

Potting Mix For Orchids FAQ's

  • Can I grow orchids on any soil?

    The simple answer to that question would be no. Orchids are delicate tropical plants and, therefore, require the right soil conditions. So, when you are planting them, make sure you have the right potting mix and soil for orchids.

  • How often do you need to water orchids?

    If you are using the right soil mix, you need to water your orchid plants once or twice a week.

  • How do you re-pot an orchid?

    To re-pot an orchid, you need to wait till your orchid completes blooming. Then move your orchid to a pot with proper drainage, and make sure to use a similar soil and potting mix.

  • How often do you need to change your potting mix?

    Typically, you should change the soil mix for your orchid at least once a year. This will ensure that your orchid has a constant supply of fresh nutrients. It also prevents the growth of pathogens and harmful fungus in the soil.

  • Light orange orchid with green leaf background - beautiful nature flower blossom concept

    Conclusion

    Orchids have stunning blooms, and their graceful shapes and radiance can brighten up any room or garden. But, beautiful as they are, they require constant attention and proper care, without which they can wither away.

    Ensuring the right soil conditions for your orchid is of paramount importance and for that, you need the best potting mix for your orchid. And now that we have arrived at the end of this review-based guide, we sincerely hope that we have been able to help find the right potting medium.

    But before we go, let us reiterate our favorites. The Miracle-Gro orchid potting mix coarse blend offers the best versatility at an affordable price, which makes it our top pick. 

    If you want a more affordable option with almost similar quality, then you can get the Sun Bulb BetterGro special orchid mix. Or, if you want an all-natural, organic option, then we recommend the Perfect Plants all-natural orchid potting mix.

    With that out of the way, it is time for us to part. Take care!

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