Although there are many different possible soilless ingredients, the most popular potting mixes for cannabis contain significant amounts of coco coir and perlite. This combination seems to work especially well for growing cannabis. As a result of coco’s growing popularity, other types of soilless mixes (especially the peat-based ones) have become far less common in cannabis grow rooms over the years.
The three main types of grow mediums for marijuana plants are soil mixes, soilless mixes and hydroponics (water). Let’s do a quick breakdown of each one, along with the pros and cons for marijuana growers!
Common Cannabis-Friendly Coco Coir Mixes in the US:
Allow me to explain…
Soilless potting mixtures that are composed of inert (non-soil) ingredients like coco coir, perlite, peat moss, Rockwool, and vermiculite can be a great choice for growing marijuana.
Best Growing Mediums for Marijuana
Plants in soil grow a little slower than in coco or hydro, but soil-grown buds tend to have a stronger smell/taste. Although using a standard soil potting mix and giving nutrients in the water gets results similar to coco, using amended and composted living soil tends to produce buds with a powerful and complex scent/taste profile.
Of course, all this depends on the grower adding the right blend of nutrients into the mix. Coco coir itself is inert, which means it contains no nutrients and can’t support plants on its own. It also lacks any microorganisms found in soil, so growers are responsible for manually controlling every variable.
Plants have been growing naturally in soil for millions of years. It’s only logical to use this widely available material as a growing medium for cannabis. Cheap and easy to work with, the soil is probably the best choice for all novice growers. It’s also considered by many to produce the best-tasting weed.
Soil – The Most Basic Cannabis Growing Medium
Perlite, meanwhile, is a lightweight material made from volcanic glass, which attracts oxygen to its surface. Many cultivators add this to their cannabis growing medium to enhance aeration and minimise roots’ energy when seeking out nutrients.
Because about a third of the fibres in coco coir repel water, air pockets are always present. Within such a structure, roots can grow and access nutrients much more easily than soil, which frees up more energy for plant and bud development. For this reason, cannabis plants grown in coco coir tend to grow faster and become larger than those cultivated in soil.
On the downside, soil can harbour pathogens and pests that could harm your plants. Additionally, the natural growth rate in soil is less than in other growing mediums. Some of which can support larger cannabis plants and greater cannabinoid yields.