Soil Amendments
Q.

Perlite

Zone N6C 1L7 London ON Canada | Anonymous added on October 19, 2018 | Answered

I just read somebody say one reason they prefer Vermiculite to Perlite is that perlite is easily crushed in shipping. I always thought that surface area was the important part of retaining water, not volume (A 2" cube has a surface area of 24 square inches, while 8 1" cubes has 48 square inches). Is there a size of perlite particle where it loses its usefulness?

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    A.Answers to this queston: Add Answer
    Downtoearthdigs
    Certified GKH Gardening Expert
    Answered on October 23, 2018

    Larger aggregate just provides more air pockets in the soil, therefore increasing drainage. The particles will have a harder time clumping together, as they don't allow each other to get close enough to form a seal, or barrier. This allows water to pass through more easily. Typically you would want to add if your soil is holding too much water, or not draining fast enough. Honestly, I prefer perlite, even if some of it gets crushed.

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