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The importance of inert materials for the life of plants

We have spoken over and over again the importance of draining the soil , so as to avoid stagnation of water and allow to supply to the plant the right oxygen supply while also preventing compaction of the soil. The inert materials , ie those that do not cooperate to the nourishment of the plant, nevertheless play extremely important action, since they allow the life of the roots. So, when you decide to grow a plant and keep it healthy over time, become of paramount importance to know the variety of drainage materials to choose to understand together the functions of inert materials in order to really understand their importance.

Characteristics of porous inert material

One of the most important features of inert materials is their infertility making them impervious to insects, mold, fungus, which gives him a stable life avoiding functional declines. Obviously this is natural and therefore non-toxic materials , definitely another good thing both for the plant and for the man who decides to use them. Furthermore, the use of inert materials, as already mentioned above avoids the compacting of the soil, which often causes the suffocation of the roots. The use of draining materials in fact, ensures the correct flow of oxygen within the vessel, allowing a correct ventilation. The inert materials allow drainage of stable and balanced water, avoiding stagnation dreaded. Also, sometimes, when you use a transparent vase and maybe you decide to make of hydroculture, the inert materials can also become a valuable cosmetic aid that enhances the ornamentation of the plant. But now let’s see how to choose the most suitable with respect to the type of plant.

the-importance-of-inert-materials-for-the-life-of-plantsPlants and flowers from external

When you decide to have an outside planter as suitable inert material is the ‘ expanded clay . The expanded clay can be bought easily in nurseries and can be recognized by its composition. It is of variable dimensone granules between three and four millimeters. The expanded clay is a porous material as it has a honeycombed internal structure. The clay is usually expanded uses as well as for outdoor plants, also for hydroponics. This inert material can also be used for mulch, as it prevents the growth of infesting plants.

Annual flowers

If you want to grow and maintain the healthy annual plants, the most correct inert material to use a substrate composed of an organic soil mixture for about half of vermiculite which allows to flow the water even more quickly while maintaining soft and healthy the soil. Vermiculite is nothing more than an aluminum rich mineral material. Vermiculite can be recognized by its composition: a series of small plates.

Beds and borders

If instead what you have to face is the cultivation of beds and borders it is advisable to use as inert material the volcanic lapilli , a material that consists of a series of irregularly shaped elements which can reach the size of about 3 cm. Their structure is porous, formed by a series of tunnels that allow both to function as an insulator allowing a proper drainage.


For houseplants that should be preferred is the pumice stone , avoid stagnant water and it should be used within the substrate for at least a percentage of 15%.

Fat plants

And of course they could not miss the succulent plants that, as always differ from others in appearance and care. For succulentsa product that can fit is the sand that allows you to quickly drain the water preventing the plant to soak excessively rotting. Equally useful may be the choice of gravel that can serve a drainage function and mulching.

As you could observe any inert material has the ability to flow properly the water. Obviously each of these has different capabilities, but all will help your plants to grow in a regular and balanced. And ‘why you should always include the presence of an inert material.

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