The Best Soil for Spider Plants – A Complete Guide

You know what’s cooler than a beautiful plant, a beautiful plant that looks like a spider.

That’s right.

Once a favorite in Victorian-era households, Spider plants are not only famous for their stylish looks.

In research done by NASA, this plant was found to have remarkable air-purifying qualities.

If these points convince you to add this plant to your household, it’s also crucial that you choose the right soil type for your spider plant.

The best soil for spider plants is nutrient-rich soil with well-draining and aeration ability. Adding perlite or pumice and some organic materials like compost or worm casting as nutritional supplements improves the drainage and aeration capacity of the soil. The soil mix should have a pH value of 6.0-7.5.

Its simple and elegant looks combined with its easy-going nature makes it a good choice among plant enthusiasts.

However, even an easy-going plant like the Spider plant has basic soil requirements for proper growth.

What kind of potting medium do you use, what nutritions you provide, and questions like these are matters of life and death for your Spider plant.

Spider Plant
Spider Plant (Source: Unsplash)

Today I’ll share some soil mix secrets and insider tips that will make your Spider plant flourish.

Importance of Using Correct Soil for Spider Plant

Every different plant grows best in a specific type of soil. But, unfortunately, most people hardly consider soil as a factor for good plant growth.

Amateur gardeners make the mistake of growing their plants on whatever soil is available in their backyard.

Not only does a bad soil mix damage the roots of the soil, but it can also make the plant vulnerable to pests and diseases.

Good soil allows roots to quickly develop and spread, which in turn increases the water and nutrient intake necessary for healthy and productive plants.

Problems like wilting, yellowing of plant leaves, and stunted growth are frequent if the right soil mix is not used.

There are two main important properties of soil to consider.

1. Soil Texture

The soil texture refers to the proportion of silt, sand, and clay particles in the soil.

For example, heavy soil refers to the compact soil made largely of clay. In contrast, light soils refer to the high proportion of sand compared to clay.

Spider plant prefers light loamy soil, meaning the soil whose soil component is higher than clay.

Loamy soil mixed with Compost (Source: Piqsels)

The texture is an important aspect to consider because of the following reasons.

  • It determines the water retention capacity of the soil.
  • Improves the aeration capacity of the soil.
  • The rate of water movement in the soil improves.
  • It determines the fertility and workability of soil.

2. Soil Structure

While texture refers to the proportion of soil components, structure means arranging those components in crumbs, granules, or blocks.

Simply, it is the physical appearance of the soil.

Spider plant thrives best in crumbly and friable soil, having plenty of spores for air and water movement. 

Soil structure should be kept in mind because,

  • It improves the drainage of the soil.
  • Beneficial microorganisms will thrive in the soil.
  • It prevents erosion of soil through excessive watering or wind.

Choosing the right soil is important so that you get the best of the above two properties.

Right soil mix will ensure that your plant gets the proper basic requirements such as moisture, organic components, aeration capability, etc. These are important aspects to consider for a healthy plant.

Factors to Consider while Choosing a Good Soil Mix for Spider Plant

Every plant has a different soil requirement for its optimal growth.

Spider plant also needs a specific type of soil to remain stylish and vibrant throughout its lifetime.

It would be best to consider a few factors before you plan to choose a good soil mix for your Spider plant.

  • Is your soil well-draining?
  • How many nutrients and fertilizer does your soil need?
  • What is the pH of the soil?
  • Is there proper aeration in the soil?
  • Can the soil hold moisture?

These are the questions you need to ask yourself before choosing the suitable soil for your Spider plant.

You must consider every factor to ensure that your Spider plant gets the right soil mix for growing correctly. Let us talk about them briefly:

1. Drainage-capacity

Soil is mainly divided into three types: silty, clayey, and sandy.

Silt is the fine grade of soil that you find near water sources. The black humus-rich soil that you find in your garden is clay, and sand is well; you know what it is.

A clay-heavy soil means no water drainage capacity, whereas sandy and silty soil does not retain a single drop of water.

Spider plant prefers well-draining soil with a balanced mixture of all those three components. The soil must retain enough water without getting soggy or water-logged.

2. Nutrient-Rich Soil

Spider plants are voracious feeders. They seek heavy nutrient-rich soil to thrive.

If you happen to take out a Spider plant from the soil, then you’ll see that it has long, thick, and fleshy roots.

Along with helping as an anchorage, these thick and fleshy roots also mean that your plant needs more food than those with thin roots.

A Healthy Potting Mix (Source: Pixabay)
A Healthy Potting Mix (Source: Pixabay)

Well-draining soil also causes a faster loss of nutrients. Adding coconut coir or peat moss will improve the nutrient retention capacity of the soil.

If you don’t provide nutrient-rich soil to your Spider plant, it will start showing symptoms of wilting, falling leaves, etc., and eventually die.

3. Soil pH Value

Spider plants prefer slightly acidic soil.

A soil with a pH value of 6.0-7.5 is optimum to reduce the availability of Fluoride, which is harmful to Spider plants.

Particularly foliage plants like Spider plant develop brown tips if exposed to Fluoride for a long time.

If the pH value is less than 6.0, then you can use limestone to compensate.

In cases where the pH value exceeds 7.5, you can add more peat moss or Iron Sulphate.

Check out this research on Peertechzpublications to know more about the effects of Flouride on plants.

4. Proper Aeration

Aeration inside the soil is an essential factor in keeping your plant healthy.

The vast majority of people only focus on aspects like fertilizer, watering, and such, totally ignoring the need for keeping the soil well-aerated.

A tightly packed dense soil is a perfect recipe for diseases like fungal growth, root rot, etc.

A well-aerated soil allows Oxygen to flow effortlessly throughout the entire root system, encouraging the growth of healthy bacteria and microorganisms.

It also allows water to seep in for adequate moisture retention.

Make sure that the soil you are growing your Spider plant has enough aeration to encourage healthy growth.

Spider plant with babies
Spider Plant with Spider Babies (Source: Wikimedia)

5. Moisture Retention

Always remember, the amount of moisture present in the soil is the measure of the health of the soil.

Succulent types of soil do not retain much moisture, but a regular potting mixture does.

Choosing a soil mix that lies in between is the best for your Spider Plant.

Overwatering should be strictly avoided as it can cause water-logging, which results in too much moisture.

If you think your soil is too dry to retain moisture, then you can add organic components like coco peat, worm castings, and compost to improve its moisture retention capacity.

Check this article to know more about other beneficial plants for your home 8 Amazing Jade Plant Benefits

Best Soil Mix for Spider Plants

Considering how hardy and versatile Spider plants are, they grow in a variety of environments.

But that does not necessarily mean that you can plant your Spider plant in garden soil and leave it.

Providing a proper growth medium for your Spider plant will not make it only long and bushy, but it will ensure that your plant survives for a long time.

The soil mix for your spider plants should be lightweight, consistent, and easy to handle with good drainage and aeration capacity.

Potting mix soil for Indoor plant
Healthy Potting Soil Mix (Source: PixaBay)

The soil’s nutritional content, density, organic material availability, and soil texture should all be considered before choosing the soil mix for your spider plants.

Make Your Potting Mix

Making your soil mix is a straightforward process, and it will help you customize a proper growth medium for any plant you grow.

You will need some material beforehand to make your potting mix.

Materials RequiredBenefitsDrawbacksAlternativesWhere to buy?
Peat Moss
  • Provides Proper Moisture

  • Holds Vital Nutrients

  • Provides Aeration

  • Enhances Texture and Consistency
  • Has Acidifying effect

  • Expensive
  • Coconut Coir,Rice Hull, Saw Dust,Hoffman Sphagnum Peat Moss
    Coconut Coir
  • Doesn't affect pH

  • Retains 30% more water than Peat Moss

  • Sterile and Weed Seed Free

  • improves resistance to root rot diseases
  • Nutrient Deficient compared to Peat Moss

  • Causes potting mix to become compact
  • Compost, Manure. Bark or Pine sawdustKempf Compressed Coco Coir Pith Block
    Perlite
  • Good water drainage capacity

  • Light-weight

  • pH Neutral
  • Can cause loss of water if used in high quantity

  • Light-weight means that it can blow away

  • It's dust can cause eye and nose irrtation
  • Pumice, VermiculiteMiracle-Gro Perlite
    Worm Casting
  • Rich in Nutrient Source

  • Loaded with beneficial microbes

  • Add as pH buffer

  • Helps to defend some plant diseases
  • No Major Drawbacks
  • CompostWorm Castings Organic Fertilizer
    Compost
  • Inexpensive to make

  • Encourages growth of beneficial bacteria

  • Suppresses some plant diseases
  • Unpleasant smell

  • Aesthetically unpleasing
  • Worm CastingsCharlie's Compost

    The following soil mix works are found to work best for Spider Plants.

    Recipe No. 1

    • Three parts organic potting soil mix
    • 1 part perlite
    • A handful of organic components like compost or worm casting
    • A handful of coconut coir or orchid barks

    You can buy Miracle Grow Indoor potting mix as an organic potting soil mix. This potting mix also contains some amount of organic matter and nutrients.

    Since it is a nutrient and organic-material-rich mix, it can retain too much moisture than required.

    To compensate for this, we add some perlite or pumice and coconut coir. It helps to improve the drainage and aeration capability of the soil.

    Lastly, we need a handful of compost to cover the plant’s nutritional needs.

    Recipe No. 2

    • Two parts succulent soil mix
    • 1 part coconut coir or peat moss
    • 1 part compost
    • A handful of worm castings on top

    Both of these soil mixes work well for the Spider plant.

    For a succulent soil mix, most prefer Hoffman Organic Cactus and Succulent Soil Mix.

    Hoffman Organic Cactus and Succulent Soil
    Hoffman Organic Cactus and Succulent Soil (Source: Amazon)

    While succulent soil mixes are also suitable as a growth medium, it does not have much moisture retention capacity.

    For that, adding one part of coco-peat or peat moss is sufficient. In addition, it helps to maintain the structure of the soil to ensure proper aeration.

    Compost is added to fulfill the nutritional requirements on the soil.

    A handful of worm castings can help your plant to fight soil-borne plant diseases and repel insects. It also allows the plant to absorb water and essential nutrients quickly.

    Voila.

    You have your homemade soil mix for your Spider plant with all the basic requirements fulfilled.

    Signs you are Using the Wrong Soil Mix for your Spider Plants

    Using the wrong soil mix for your spider plants can be detrimental, resulting in unhealthy growth and possibly death of the plant.

    Look for the following signs to determine if the soil mix you are using for your spider plants is unsuitable.

    • Wilting and curling of the leaves
    • Falling off of leaves
    • Spots on the foliage of the leaves
    • Root rot starts to occur
    • Discoloring of the leaves (yellow, black, brown)
    • Leaf tip burns

    If you see any of these signs in your spider plants, then it means that you need to take action as soon as possible.

    Action usually refers to repotting your spider plant in a new potting mix. Repotting should be done in either of the soil mix mentioned above.

    Click this link to know more about the NASA research: Interior Landscape Plants for Indoor Air Pollution Abatement.

    How do you Know When Spider Plants Need Repotting?

    If you start seeing the signs as mentioned earlier of damage in your spider plant, then the best way to save your plant is by repotting it to a new soil mix.

    Some reasons your spider plants may need repotting includes:

    • Root Rot
    • Root Bound
    • The soil on your spider plant dries up rapidly, resulting in droopy leaves.

    Tips: You can seperate your spider plants into smaller ones from a single one while repotting if you want more of them.

    How to Repot your Spider Plants?

    Removing a Spider plant is pretty straightforward and does not require any extensive knowledge or tools.

    • First, gently remove the spider plant from the original pot. Check for any signs of root damage.
    • Knock off any extra dirt from the roots and examine carefully. You can cut away the damaged roots before repotting if you see any signs of root damage (dark and damp origins).
    • Rinse the roots properly and plant your spider plant in a new larger pot.
    • Generally, a pot that is one size bigger than the current one is enough. Make sure that the pot you are using has ample drainage holes.
    • Place the plant at a height that allows you to fill the potting soil to cover the roots.
    • Water the plant after repotting to allow the potting soil to settle correctly.

    Check out this excellent video on repotting your Spider plant

    Conclusion

    Spider best is one of the most unique-looking indoor plants out there.

    Combine its unique looks with its ability to purify air impurities, and it is an instant sell-out for anyone.

    This plant is a  style statement for anyone who wishes to grace their indoor decorations with a healthy green addition.

    Not only that, this plant is one of the easiest house plants to grow, even for beginners, and can typically live for a long time if you can mimic its natural environment.

    Check our other related articles: Best Soil for Hoya and Best Potting Mix for Dwarf Citrus Tree.

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    2 comments
    1. You mentioned about Miracle-Grow indoor potting mix. At one time, this product may have been good, newer formulations are pure junk. I repotted mine…the mixture holds water badly…even with proper drainage. I am researching using a succulent mixture… I’m going to try Hoffman 10410 Organic Cactus and Soil Mix. I will update you on how I did.

      1. I am so sorry to hear that your Miracle Potting Mix for indoor plants did not work out. Good luck with your new potting mix; I hope it works out. I am waiting to hear an update from you soon.

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