Can I Use Orchid Potting Mix for Succulents?

Can I Use Orchid Potting Mix for Succulents
Can I Use Orchid Potting Mix for Succulents

Can I use orchid potting mix for succulents? I remember when I was started growing succulents. I also asked the same question. At that time, I bought an orchid potting soil. But I heard that I could use it for my succulent plant too.

So, can I use orchid potting mix for succulents? The answer is it depends on the types of succulents. I’ll explain it further below.

Yes, you can use orchid potting soil for succulents. But this only works on tropical ones. Tropical succulents love more moisture. So adding orchid bark or soil mix to the usual succulent soil mix may have a good result.

However, for soft succulents that are accustomed to the low-temperature environments, it is better to use cacti and succulents mix. If you have outdoor succulents, it is always a good idea to add pumice or perlite to provide extra drainage and aeration.

This is a common practice. But you can always experiment. In fact, you can add chicken grit or insoluble crushed granite. This will increase the chance of growing succulents successfully.

Related: Best Soil for Succulents in Pots

In my case, I use the perfect blend of peat moss, composted bark, perlite, compost, and pumice. This will hold moist longer perfect for tropical succulents. You can buy a soil mix like this on Amazon.

If your succulents are not tropical, do not use the orchid potting mix. It will harm your plants because it retains more moisture than the succulent soil mix. Soft succulents do not like extra moist. It will only cause rotting in the long run.

If you are not sure whether or not your succulents are tropical, just use the regular soil mix. From that, add more perlite or pumice to achieve maximum growth.

Succulents are known as tolerant of extreme environmental conditions. But this statement may not always be true depending on the type of the succulents.

There are many factors that could harm the growth of the plant. So, if you’re not sure what succulent you are growing, consider the climate, light source, and seasonal changes to protect your plants.

Another thing to consider is the immediate environment. Are you growing your plants indoor or outdoor? The environment affects the amount of water and watering frequency.

What is the best soil mix for succulents?

Succulents are native to semi-desert areas. Most of them are drought tolerant. However, when you grow them in areas outside their natural habitat, they need soil similar to those in the desert.

So, what is the best soil mix for succulents? The best soil for succulents is the one that provides aeration and drainage for the plant. The soil like this dries quickly and only retain enough moisture for the succulents to thrive.

More often than not, succulents grow healthily in soil made of organic materials. However, the soil needs to be mixed with inorganic ingredients too.

Organic and inorganic ingredients

As mentioned, a perfect soil mix for succulents is the one that quickly dries and provides drainage and aeration to the plant. But most gardeners (this includes me) find it better to have a combination of organic and inorganic materials.

The rule of thumb is a mixture of garden soil, coarse sand, peat moss, potting soil, and perlite. But this totally depends on you and your plants’ needs. One succulent mix may not be applicable to all. You can experiment with your own version. It will be just fine.

The most important thing you need to do before planting your plants in the soil you made is to do some testing. Test the soil if it really meets the standard.

Simply take a handful then squeeze it. If the soil easily crumbles in your hand, that’s a good sign. This means that you achieved the correct soil for your plant.

If the finished soil lumps, it means you need to add more inorganic ingredients. Do it until you achieve an easy to crumble succulent soil mix.

Another ingredient for a healthy succulent soil mix

Another thing that you might want to know more about succulents is that these plants love slightly acidic soil. If the soil is not slightly acidic, you can improve it. What you can do is make a mix of 1 tablespoon of white vinegar with 5 gallons of water. Then use it to water the plants. It should add a little acidity to the soil.

Best succulent soil mixes for succulents

If you don’t have time to make your own succulent mix, you can buy it online or from nearby suppliers.

In my case, I buy almost all my garden supplies from Amazon. The reason is obvious. It is easy and hassles free especially if you are working for a regular job like me.

In this post, I will be sharing some of the succulent soil mixes that I regularly order online for my succulents. If you are interested, you may try one of the following:

Disclaimer: The following products contain Amazon affiliate links. This means that if you click the link and purchase an item, I will earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.

1. Succulent Planter Soil Kit Terrarium

This is what I use for my succulents planted in an open terrarium. This is a total package product that contains everything you need for your plants. With detailed instructions, your job is just to plant the succulents.

The materials included in the kit are the pea gravel, activated charcoal, organic soil, river rock, and bright sheet moss. All of these materials are needed for successful succulent growth.

The charcoal helps remove toxins, the soil provides nutrients, rocks for additional aesthetic features, and the moss to regulate moisture. All these ingredients are included in one purchase.

Buying this kit will save you money. You would spend more on purchasing the materials individually. There are three different sizes that you can choose from: small, medium, and large. Of course, the size depends on the size of the plant. For instance, if you will plant bigger succulents, you will need the large one.

2. Succulent and Cactus Soil Mix

If you are looking for a perfect succulent and cactus soil mix, you may want to try the blend from Superfly Bonsai. This is a pre-mixed that contains materials such as Hard Japanese Akadama, pumice, pine bark, and haydite essential for healthy succulent growth.

Each material included has a specific purpose. For instance, the Japanese Akadama retains moisture, the pumice as the nutrient source, the pine bark to retain fertilizer, the haydite helps drain excess water.

The combination of ingredients like this is a good blend that ensures the succulent to thrive healthily. With all the essential ingredients combine, the plants will be able to breathe and avoid root rotting.

The good thing about this product is that it comes with a resealable bag. This means that you can easily save and store the unused materials for future use. This safety feature is perfect for you to be able to maximize the materials for your plants.

This is not only perfect for succulents but more so for cacti. If you are growing both, there is no need to buy individual soil mix. This one will do.

3. Cactus and Succulent Blend Potting Mix

Another cactus and succulent potting mix that I love using for my succulent plants is the potting mix from rePotme. This brand produces excellent succulent soil mix. For years, this potting mix did not cause me a headache. The soil has high quality. It does not only provide drainage and nutrients for the plants but also protection from insects and other intruders.

What I love the most about this succulent soil mix is its ability to retain just enough moisture necessary for healthy succulent growth. This keeps the plant safe from the threat of overwatering.

The main ingredients of this blend potting mix are the perlite, pumice, sand, and stalite mixed together. In addition, durable organic materials such as coir, coconut husk are added to achieve high quality and reliable succulent soil mix.

The product comes with different sizes. You can choose one depending on the number of your needs.

4. Bonsai Jack Succulent Cactus Soil Gritty Mix

For me, this is probably the fastest draining soil mix you can have for your plants. This is perfect for succulents that need a slight amount of acid. The product is created by people with tremendous experience in growing succulents. This is the reason why this soil mix has excellent quality.

Using this soil mix, you don’t have to worry about overwatering your plants. The excess water will surely drain through. All the ingredients in this product are designed to protect the plants from any form of pathogens that can harm the plants.

This product comes with different sizes you can choose from. All of these are pre-washed making it a safe soil for your succulents and cacti. Bonsai Jack is a renowned brand for almost all succulent growers around the world.

5. Hoffman 10404 Organic Cactus and Succulent Soil Mix

The perfect acidity balance makes this soil mix perfect for succulents. It is ready to be planted soil mix for succulents and cacti. It contains the perfect amount of nutrients that support the plants’ healthy growth.

Of course, this soil mix quickly dries. The mix prevents overwatering and therefore keeps the succulents safe all the time.

Final Thoughts

Succulents are special plants that have special needs. They need special care too. For successful succulent growth, you need to give the right soil, nutrient, and amount of water.

So, can you use orchid potting mix for succulents? It depends on the type of succulents you are growing. Orchid potting soil may be only good for tropical succulents not for other varieties.

I hope that this simple guide helps you successfully grow your succulents. For more info on this, you can read my article on how to grow succulents successfully. Happy growing!


I am a university teacher by profession, researcher, blogger, and gardener.

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