Perlite or Vermiculite

I was standing in the local Menards and wondering perlite or Vermiculite. Read article on Google about the difference between the two.
I’ve never used either so I’m just repeating.
Use vermiculite during seed phase and perlite in soil mediums for transplanting. Is this true false or somewhere in between?

I like perlite over vernacile. The vermacile will hold water where as the Perlite does not. Which makes for a more airy soil allowing roots to flow easier. But be sure it’s not miracle grow with the time release in it.

Just my 3 cents


I prefer Perlite, it holds less water, able to control it better, meaning it’s better to have more wet dry cycles than a long standing wet cycle, it means you won’t have optimization while the plant’s roots are soaked, better they can get drier sooner so you can squeeze in more watering cycles with faster drying time. IMHO and experience.

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Ok so would either of you ever use Vermiculite?

I don’t really see a use for it in my gardens.

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I use 100% agricultural coarse vermiculite in hydroponics and 25% in soil.

Did you know vermiculite is a form of asbestos? It’s without the fishhook shard fibers.

I did not. I’m going with perlite in my soil. Hell I dont want anything like asbestos near my babies.
Thank you for the info I appreciate it. Happy growing. Puff puff

Oops, I got it backwards again!

Perlite is a form of asbestos! I dunno what vermiculite is related to? My luck, something worse!

Perlite is a volcanic rock mined in the United States, as well as other countries like China, Greece, and Italy. The volcanic glass, or perlite , is formed when lava (molten rock) spews out of a volcano, and cools in a rapid manner.

Perlite is a naturally occurring silicous rock and as such, is not toxic . Perlite is used in horticultural, construction and industrial applications. Ingesting the products that incorporate perlite may cause illness and, in excessive amounts, permanent harm or death.

Just don’t eat it lol


Exfoliation occurs when the mineral is heated sufficiently, and the effect is routinely produced in commercial furnaces. Vermiculite is formed by weathering or hydrothermal alteration of biotite or phlogopite. Large commercial vermiculite mines currently exist in Russia, South Africa, China, and Brazil.

Crystal habit: As large crystalline plates to clay-sized particles; lamellar to scaley

Space group: C2/m

Crystal class: Prismatic (2/m); (same H-M symbol)


Thank you @Jbum, that is excellent clarification. Appreciate the post!

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@Jbum so which do you prefer. I’m growing in soil.

I go perlite for both coco and soil. That’s what I use anyway

Vermiculite absorbs water, and breaks down rather quickly. It literally swells and shrinks. Friendly bacteria love it. Just be sure to get the asbestos free stuff. I’ve heard it’s a good choice for fabric pots.

Perlite will not absorb water, it doesn’t break down too quickly, friendly bacteria love it.

Then there’s pumice…

@Jbum @Drinkslinger I’m building 3 pots kind of experimenting I’ve got Coco Loco Happy Frog and Ocean Forest. I haven’t decided for sure on any kind of mixture yet. Can seeds be put into Happy Frog and coco loco mixture with perlite?
I’m planning on using OF for the transfer into the 5 gallon fabric pots. I need advice.

I try to start in seedling soil just to be on the safe side. It’s easier to add any kind of nutes or teas if need be rather then trying to take them out. That’s just my low experience opinion.

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I’ve never played with coco. I’ve always been a soil guy.
Some strains are sensitive to the strength of the nutes in ocean forest. I use an organic seedling specific soil for the start. I’m sure you could also use the happy frog/perlite.

@Drinkslinger the coco loco actually is a soil base with coco in it. Haven’t got it yet but I’ll try to post a pic of it. I’m new to growing so I’m absorbing everything I can I truly appreciate your help.

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