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garden vs potting soil

Hi there.

I live in zone 6 and new to this whole gardening thing. I am trying to grow some herbs in pots. I just realized I bought gardening soil instead of potting soil....can I use this or do I need to return it and get potting soil?

Thanks in advance

Posts: 14100
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 8:32 am
Location: Hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Get potting mix garden soil will say on the package that it is not for potted plants. It is mostly compost that needs to be mixed with soil. Soil does not work well in pots. It contracts and the rootball will form a hard mass that water cannot pass easily through so it will go around and out the drainhole instead especially if you have not been good about watering consistently. It is also a lot heavier than potting mix.

Greener Thumb
Posts: 801
Joined: Tue Sep 22, 2015 9:20 pm
Location: Canada zone 8b

Although some may disagree, I grow herbs in gardening soil, in pots. I've never had any issues...but then again, some people think this is wrong (my sister-in-law still doesnt usndertand why am able to grow good parsley in gardening soil in clay pots :))

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Posts: 30704
Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 7:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M(11/B)

I think it's important to understand WHY something works and how that might be different from the popular opinion. Why do you suppose your gardening soil works for you? What kind is it? What's in it?

Greener Thumb
Posts: 1030
Joined: Mon Oct 19, 2015 9:12 pm
Location: central Ohio

My first thought would be the climate difference. BC has a cooler climate with lower uv exposure than New Jersey. And some could be the soil. I've had some garden soils that work well as part of a blended substrate, others that were just awful.

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