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Can You Plant Peat Moss With Succulents

Whether you are new to the plant parent community or are a natural green thumb, who has been growing plants for a while, questions and innovative ideas will come up! Succulents are an excellent plant for beginners and seasoned gardeners. You may be curious; can you plant succulents in moss? If so, what are the benefits?

You can plant succulents in moss, specifically peat moss. Peat moss is a main ingredient in most planting soils.

Now that you know you can plant your succulent in peat moss let us discuss the benefits and cautions of using peat moss with your succulents.

What is Peat Moss?

Peat moss is a dense, absorbent moss that soaks up water and nutrients like a sponge.

Peat moss is excellent in small mixtures with potting soil because it holds water and is released to the plant as needed. It is also great for holding nutrients so that they are not washed away when the plant’s water drains.

Peat moss is an alternative way of using compost. It is a dead material that forms when living materials, such as sphagnum moss that grows on the topsoil, decompose in peat bogs. It is a great gardening additive and soil alternative that helps maintain an acid pH. It is an excellent choice for plants that require a higher acidic soil.

Is Peat Moss good for succulents?

Peat moss is great for absorbing moisture and providing balanced oxygen levels. It is a great starter plant material for succulents grown in pots because it allows for balanced soil pH and nutrient levels.

It is important to remember that some succulents require a more neutral pH, so not all breeds of succulents will be able to grow in the same ratios of peat moss. Peat moss also holds moisture, so your succulents will require less watering if you choose to use it.

Peat moss is typically grown and imported from Canada. Therefore, it is better suited for succulents that need more insulation because peat moss helps heat up the soil and the environment around it.

How do you use Peat Moss with succulents?

Most potting soils made for plants, such as succulents, contain lesser amounts of peat moss to help improve the soil texture and make it less dense. This, in turn, helps with water drainage and aeration so that the succulent roots will not suffocate.

Creating your soil mixture

Depending on the look you are going for, you can add peat moss to potting soil, coarse sand, succulent pebbles, or pumice.

  1. Create your soil mixture – Before adding moss, you will want to mix your soil, pebbles, or coarse sand in ratios of equal increments. 
  2. Evaluate the soil pH – Before adding peat moss to your soil, it is essential to test your soil’s pH levels and note what pH your succulent requires. Most succulents thrive between 4 – 6.5pH.
  3. Water your peat moss – Before adding your peat moss to your soil mixture, wet the moss thoroughly, allowing it a few minutes to absorb the water. Water should seep out when you squeeze the peat moss.
  4. Add peat moss to your soil – Apply the recommended ratio of peat moss to potting soil, which is about one-third versus the rest of the mixture, depending on the current pH of your soil. 
  5. Pot your soil – Place the mixture in a pot with at least one drainage hole.
  6. Transplant your succulent – Place your succulent in the prepared mixture. Be sure to plant your succulent at the same depth as before growing. Carefully cover the roots with your soil.
  7. Liquid fertilizer additive – An option to consider is adding liquid fertilizer to your peat moss because peat moss does not naturally contain many nutrients. Still, it will absorb nutrients and release them as the plant requires them.

Benefits of Peat Moss

Peat moss is an excellent soil additive for succulents because it has a high pH, which succulents thrive, and improves soil texture.

  • Peat moss is great for retaining the water and nutrients your succulent requires. 
  • Peat moss will not compact and is great for complimenting soil texture. It allows your succulent roots to breathe and receive water and nutrients as needed from the peat moss. 
  • Peat moss is rich in organic content.
  • It is thoroughly sterilized, whereas most organic soil additives are not typically sterilized. It is disease resistant because of the way it is harvested. It is free from microorganisms, disease pathogens, and weed seeds.
  • It has a high pH, which means it is high in acidity. Succulents prefer higher pH soil, and Peat Moss is great for mitigating alkalinity in potting soil and tap water.

Disadvantages of using Peat Moss

If you choose to make your mixture for your succulents, it is essential to note that succulents cannot solely grow on peat moss

  • Because of the way Peat Moss absorbs water, it can cause drainage issues, which eventually leads to root rot. 
  • If you use an incorrect ratio of Peat Moss to soil mixture, your soil can become too acidic for your plant to survive.
  • Peat moss increases the water retentiveness of soil, which can drown your succulents or cause root rot if watered too frequently or if the soil does not drain properly.
  • Peat Moss does not contain nutrients naturally, so they must be added.
  • Peat Moss is a non-renewable resource. It takes a long time to decompose. It is also imported. Therefore, it can become expensive if required in large increments.

In conclusion

Peat moss is good for most succulents. It helps keep a good balance of moisture, oxygen, pH, and nutrients when appropriately mixed with other soil additives required for succulents to thrive. Although peat moss can be beneficial, some cautions to keep in mind when using it.

It is not meant to be used on its own, as its acidity is extremely high and absorbs a lot of moisture, which can cause drainage issues. Therefore, if appropriately used, peat moss can be a powerful addition to your succulent potting soil.

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