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What’s the Best Substrate for Growing Cannabis

When it comes to growing cannabis you can choose from various substrates including coco coir, clay, rockwool or soil, each with its own set of characteristics.

If you’re highly invested in the quality and flavor of your cannabis plants, we highly recommend growing in soil.

When it comes to indoor cannabis growing, those that grow in hydroponics or with coco coir can obtain larger yields. However, if you’re more invested in the quality of your flowers rather than quality, we recommend growing in soil as it allows for bio and biomineral fertilizers.

Plus, when it comes to indoor growing, soil is much easier to use even if you use mineral fertilizers.

Types of Soil Substrate for Cannabis

In order to differentiate from different types of soil, we recommend following two indicators: amount of nutrients and composition.

The amount of nutrients should be visible on the container and can be measured using EC.

  • Lightly fertilized soil generally has the word light in the name, and it has an EC between 1 and 1.5, and enough nutrients for two weeks. This type of soil is ideal for the first few weeks of your plants- life and for growers that would like to be actively involved in dosing nutrients via watering almost from the start.
  • Highly fertilized soil usually has the word All or Complete in the name and an EC between 2 and 2.8. This type of soil contains enough nutrients for about 6 weeks or more.


Manufacturers use different strategies to air out substrate and increase water retention. Some add coco coir, while as others add expanded clay. Plus, the amount of organic material in each substrate also varies.

What type of Soil do I Need for Cannabis?

Depending on composition

  • Soil that does best with your growing conditions. It's not the same to grow on a sunlit balcony than in a controlled indoor setting.
  • Indoors with controlled climates you need an aired substrate with decent drainage.
  • In hot climates, we recommend using substrates that retain water well. This means you can water less and stress your plants out less, too.
  • In cold climates you won't need as much water, so you should use a more aired substrate.

Depending on the amount of nutrients

  • In order to start off growing, use substrates with light amounts of nutrients. Recently germinated seeds feed off of nutrients using their first two small leaves, which is why it's best not to overdo it so your plants can gradually feed as needed.
  • Keep in mind that commercial substrates already contain nutrients, so every time you transplant they'll have two weeks worth of nutrients.
  • If you're using a light nutrient mix at the start and then change to a heavy one, you don't have to use nutrients during the growth stage, simply transplant to larger pots every month and a half. This allows you to only water with the right pH and forget the rest.
  • If you would prefer to know what you're feeding your plants we recommend using light substrates.

Our catalogue has a wide selection of nutrients to choose from for all needs; the best brands at the lowest prices.

How to Choose the Best Soil for Growing Cannabis

You can choose between light substrates with few nutrients, medium substrates, or heavy substrates with 6 or more weeks’ worth of nutrients.

Soil with 2 Weeks of Fertilizers

This type of soil is designed to be used during the first few growing weeks. It’s ideal for growers that prefer to use nutrients when watering practically from the start of the process.

Our catalogue includes different types of light soils with 2 weeks’ worth of nutrients, including some of the best brands:

Janeco Light Mix is a type of soil that’s quite airy, perfect for growing in humid, cold or climatized indoor areas.


  • Sphagnum peat
  • Blonde sphagnum peat
  • Perlite
  • Mineral lime
  • NPK fertilizer: 12 – 14 – 24
  • pH: 5.7
  • EC: 1.5

Sabika is a balanced substrate for indoor and outdoor growing with a great price/quality ratio.


  • 60% blonde peat
  • 35% coco
  • 5% perlite
  • NPK: 20 – 5 – 10
  • pH: 6.2
  • EC: 1.1

Light Mix BioBizz has a high water retention capacity. This soil is ideal for hot climates or outdoor grows with direct sunlight.


  • 55% high quality peat
  • 30% perlite
  • 15% worm humus
  • 6.2 pH
  • 1.2 EC

Soil with 3 Weeks of Fertilizers

Grow Mix has enough mineral fertilizer for about three weeks. This soil is affordable and high in quality, making it ideal for mineral grows.


  • Peat
  • Perlite
  • Worm hummus
  • Pre-fertilizerd with 1.8 kg/m3 of mineral fertilizer (NPK 12 – 14 – 24)
  • pH (EN13037) 5.9 – 7.2
  • E.C. (1:1.5) 1.0 – 1.5

Soil with 6 Weeks or More of Fertilizers

All Mix by Plagron is a type of soil that contains up to 73% organic material and retains plenty of water. It’s a great balanced bio option for all types of grows.


  • Peat
  • Perlite
  • Worm humus
  • Pre-fertilized with 12.5 kg / m3 organic fertilizer (NPK 5.5 – 11 – 5.5)
  • pH (EN13037) 6.5 – 7.9
  • E.C. (1:1.5) 1.5  2.2 mS/cm

All Mix Bio Bizz is a substrate that retains plenty of water, making it ideal for warmer areas and outdoor grows exposed to direct sunlight.


  • 20% sphagnum peat
  • 35% garden peat
  • 10% worm hummus
  • 30% perlite
  • 5% pre-mix
  • Organic and natural fertilizer for the entire life cycle.
  • 6.6 pH
  • 2.4 EC

Kilomix Atami is one of the heaviest organic fertilizers (82.2% nutes) which is ideal for bio grows. It’s definitely the best price/quality ratio in as far as fertilizers go.


  • Sphagnum peat
  • Blonde sphagnum peat
  • Perlite
  • Lime
  • Worm hummus
  • 6kg marine bird guano (NPK 6 – 7 – 6) per m3 soil
  • 0.75kg organic fertilizer (NPK 12 – 14 – 24) per m3 soil.
  • pH 5.5 / 6.5
  • EC 2.60 – 2.80

Bat Mix by Plagron is the perfect substrate for cannabis flowering.


  • Peat
  • Perlite
  • Worm humus
  • Bat guano
  • Pre-fertilized with 10.5kg/m3 organic fertilizer (NPK 5.5 – 11 – 5.5)
  • pH (EN13037) 6.1 – 7.5
  • E.C. (1:1.5) 1.0 – 1.5

How to Grow Cannabis Outdoors in the Ground

If you’re growing in your garden, we recommend making a hole in the ground and mixing your garden’s soil with store-bought soil. You can add some Mega Worm (worm humus) in order to increase growth and fertilize during the flowering period. It’s an easy way to grow without making many changes to your garden. Another great choice would be to use solid fertilizers such as Powder Feeding, Bio Tabs or Bio Tablets.

How to Grow Cannabis in Fields

If you have many plants out in a field we recommend using compost, worm humus like Mega Worm, guano such as Nitroguano or Superguano and microelements such as Top Vulcan.

At La Huerta Grow Shop you can always count on our team to help you resolve any doubts or questions you may have.

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