If you are an active gardener, you must have heard a lot about Perlite. Want to know what is it & how is it useful in gardening? We are trying to provide answers of all your concerns in detail below.
What is Perlite
Perlite is a non-organic material used in soil to make it more aerate & drainable. These are tiny, round white flecks. Perlite is an unshaped volcanic glass and has high water content. When heated at a temperature of around 900 C the trapped water in it tries to escape & make it expand to 13-15 times its original size and pops out. Thus makes the end product very light. Though it can retain water but being very porous it allows water to drain easily.
Benefits of Perlite
It is used as an additive into soil mix and has the following benefits:
- It improves aeration and modify the soil, makes it loose & more drainable.
- It can absorb water & nutrients and makes them readily available for plants.
- Is free of weeds & diseases.
- Is clean, lightweight & safe to handle.
- Because of its large surface area, it is good for plants that needs high humidity. Evaporation from its surface create humid environment.
- Good for cuttings, encourage stronger root formation.
Disadvantages of Perlite
- It is non-renewable resource
- Can be hazardous to health if inhaled