growing cannabis soil mixture

Sand is easily permeable for root growth, for instance, but it does not hold on to water or fertilizer well.

Clay is just the opposite. When it’s hot and dry, clay can become hard as a rock, making it difficult for roots to penetrate. Clay drains poorly and is hard to cultivate. On the plus side, it is rich in minerals and natural nutrients.

Test kits are available to measure your soil’s acidity, or you can take a sample to your friendly local extension agent. If your dirt does not have the proper acidity, soil amendments are available to lower or raise the pH level in your soil. Your local nursery, garden store or extension agent can make some suggestions.

Soil Types.

Growing cannabis outdoors offers many benefits. Firstly, it can be very affordable. You do not need to provide a structure like a greenhouse or high tunnel. In addition, artificial light is not necessary if you place it in the right spot in your yard, because your plants can benefit from the sun’s abundant and free energy.

Of these types, loam is by far the best soil mix for growing marijuana plants and many other types of crops. Loam is a mixture of clay, sand, and silt, bringing forth the best qualities of these disparate types of soil while minimizing their worst attributes.

You will want to provide the proper amount of light and water to your plants, of course. A drip irrigation system can cut your water bills while improving the health of your plants. Kits are available that give you everything you need to get started. If you prefer, you can start from scratch and obtain separate components to put them all together.

The optimal ratio for loam is 20% clay, 40% silt and 40% sand. Most folks think a pH of 6.0 is best for cannabis, with a range of 5.8 to 6.3 being acceptable. With a pH close to neutral, loam is typically in that zone or close to it.

Just like humans, plants need the right nutrients. The most important ones for your cannabis plants are nitrogen (N), potassium (K) and phosphate (P). These make up the ratios you will typically see on fertilizer labels.

Silt soils have lots of minerals and retain moisture well. Like clay, however, this type of soil can become compacted and hard in certain conditions. It can also form a crust, making it difficult for moisture and nutrients to reach plants’ roots.

Loam for Growing Marijuana & Other Crops.

In addition, you do not necessarily have to provide costly soil for your plants outside. But for the best results, you want good marijuana soil that will help your plants grow healthy and happy. DripWorks is here to offer you a few simple tips for finding and creating the best soil for growing marijuana outdoors.

Four basic soil types exist: sand, clay, silt, and loam. Each has its pros and cons for gardening.

Loam is ideal for containers as well as for outdoor growing. Unfortunately, it is usually the most expensive soil to buy. But if you are interested in growing the best plants possible, it can pay big dividends in the long run. You can also build up your own loam soil by adding organic matter to it. If you have a compost bin, you can use the compost to improve your soil. This will be a time-consuming and ongoing process but with grit and persistence will pay off in the long run.

The right balance is essential for healthy growth. Many pre-mixed marijuana fertilizers are available, making your job easier. But if you prefer, you can also formulate your own.

Water, Light and Nutrients.

To till your soil, apply the amendments and start digging or use a rototiller. It takes time, but make sure everything is adequately mixed, including all corners of a pot or bed.

A healthy soil maintains itself, and living organisms both reap and share the benefits of a healthy soil with your cannabis plants.

Phosphorus-rich nutrients.

Step 3: Mix your soil.

Combine equal parts compost, organic material, and aeration. How much you begin with will depend on your needs. Consider that this base will account for approximately 20% of the total volume of your mix.

Once you’ve mixed everything in, water your soil to help cool any added manure. This process should be repeated every few days until the soil is cool to the touch when you bury your hand. At this point, the soil is ready for your seeds or clones.

Just as important as fungi, bacterial populations can help break down complex sugars and convert them to readily available macro and micronutrients for your cannabis. They also help to establish and maintain the immune system of your plants, making them more adept to fight off pests, diseases, and inclement environmental conditions.

Potassium-rich nutrients.

Still not sure whether to till or not to till? Try analyzing soil samples at the beginning and end of the season to determine whether or not annual tilling benefitted your garden in the end.

Nitrogen-rich nutrients.

One popular formulation of this recipe that works well is:

Step 4: Prepare your soil for the next season.

Growing cannabis organically allows growers to produce a high-quality product without the interference of chemical nutrients that can burn or kill the plants. It’s important to truly understand what you want in your soil so you can produce your own custom blend that costs less and contains all essential nutrients.

Since then, his recipe has served as the de facto totem for the organic cannabis cultivation community. Virtually every subsequent article on organic super soils references SubCool’s soil recipe, and for good reason: It works.

These ingredients help bring the bacteria:

A diverse microbiology in your soil will be contingent on many factors, and establishing food to grow a healthy fungal population is one of the most important.

To remedy this problem, you can submit a soil test to get a base understanding of what nutrients it contains.

Step 1: Know what’s in your soil.

The result? Friends always like to bring food to the party. Picture your cannabis as the partygoers—they like food! Here are some terrific amendments to build fungal life:

Also check out how to amend your super soil mix, and our recipe on a compost tea soil.

However, building your own soil at home can be just as easy, cost-effective, and accessible as buying a pre-mixed bag at the store. Creating your own super soil will also teach you a lot about soil science and how the components of soil will effect the outcome of your cannabis grow.

Though tilling soil is necessary for your first crop, it’s up for debate whether or not tilling annually is beneficial. The argument against tilling is that it breaks down a complex network of mycelium, worm tunnels, and cavities created by beneficial organisms in the soil.

Additionally, you can work your hands through the soil and get to know it: Is it compact or fluffy? Sandy or claylike? Does it hold moisture or is it dry? Are there worms and insects present? These are all things you can consider by simply using sight and touch.

Each organism within this habitat serves it purpose in the web of life (sometimes also referred to as a soil food web). This web is not only virtually self-sustaining, it also has the capabilities to both convert and provide readily available nutrients to your plants. Maintaining an organic cannabis garden grown in super soil may require little to nothing more than adding water. Take that, synthetic nutrients!

Fox Farm has been around for over 30 years and makes some of the most common types of “cannabis soil” (at least in the US). They have several great soil mixes, including “Happy Frog” which is a great choice for seedlings and clones.

Good Cannabis Soil The plant is growing in organic, composted “super soil” which has enough amendments to last your entire grow, so the only thing you do is add water!

When it comes to growing cannabis in soil, unless you’re using a brand that is known for making soil that is specifically cannabis-friendly, there are a few things that you need to consider before starting a grow.

If you get the soil part right, you have almost everything you need to get to harvest! With the correct texture, drainage and water retention, you’ve got a perfect base. Add good soil cannabis nutrients, especially in the budding phase, and you should get to harvest with great results!

Good Cannabis Soil Another light, rich soil mix with great drainage. Although there is a wood chip in this picture, for the most part the mix is completely composted and broken down. It’s normal to see some wood pieces in composted soil, but you don’t want to have to wait for a lot of wood to break down while your plants are growing – you want all that rich nutrient goodness to be readily available to your plant roots 🙂

Fox Farm Ocean Forest Soil.

Generally, anything labeled as an “organic potting mix” will work. This type of mix hasn’t been amended with chemical slow-release nutrients, which is one of the main things you want to avoid with soil for cannabis. I know it sounds like heresy, but even the Miracle-Gro version of “organic potting mix” will work okay, because unlike their original potting mix it doesn’t contain chemical nutrients (though it still has poor drainage and moisture retention – almost any other type of organic potting mix is better!).

Note: You’ll likely never see any soil mix with ALL those ingredients, but I wanted to share examples of common cannabis-friendly ingredients and amendments that often appear on the label of good soil 🙂

Some growers choose an amended and composted “hot” soil that slowly releases nutrients over time. With this type of soil, you typically just add water or natural supplements like worm tea from seed to harvest. Other growers prefer a lighter potting mix so they have more control, and give nutrients in the water once the plant roots have used up the nutrients in the soil. But which brands can you trust?

What gets the best results for growing cannabis is a soil with a light texture that is good at retaining water…but not too much!

Recommended soil nutrients:

The following video shows the soil texture you want (this is Coco Loco, an excellent soil for growing cannabis)

Good Cannabis Soil This soil has quite a bit of perlite, which is a good choice if you plan to feed heavily with nutrients and supplements since the extra perlite prevents nutrient buildup in the soil.

It’s easy to get caught up thinking about what nutrients and amendments are in the soil, and those are important, but perhaps the most important aspect of any soil is actually its texture, ability to drain, and overall water “holding” ability.

Nugbuckets is a famous organic soil grower! Check out his plants!

Example of “Good” Cannabis Soil Ingredients.

Try to get soil that looks like this!

In order for a cannabis plant to grow and thrive, it needs a good mix of both water and oxygen at the roots at all times! Too much water and the plant roots can’t get enough oxygen (lack of oxygen at the roots is why plants get droopy from overwatering) but on the flip side if there’s not enough water retention the roots can be injured from drying out too quickly!

What should you look for in good cannabis soil?

Coco Coir.

Now here are a few examples of good and bad cannabis soil so you can see the texture you’re looking for!

Worm Castings.

Important Cannabis Soil Considerations.

Vermiculite.

The “micro-herd” in the soil delivers nutrients directly to your plants. As long as you’re using decent water, you usually don’t need to worry about pH or other things that can disrupt nutrient absorption in regular soil.

Espona Organic Potting Mix is found in many stores in the US, and works for growing cannabis!

Here’s organic “super” soil up close.

Super Soil has a colony of micro-organisms living in the soil which form a symbiotic relationship with your plant roots. They deliver nutrients to your plant, and in return they eat the sugars that get secreted by your roots!

Bad Cannabis Soil Although this seedling is over a month old, it has stayed tiny. Its growth is stunted by the thick heavy soil that holds way too much water and not enough air. Note how some of the soil looks like one solid object.

This is what kind of soil to get if you don’t have any “good” soil available, but want something that is known to work for growing cannabis.