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How to Make Succulent Soil

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This post shares all about how to make succulent soil at home. I also use this soil for certain houseplants that require well-draining soil. It’s an easy process and is way cheaper than buying a bag at the store! This post contains affiliate links, which you can read more about here.

How to Make Succulent Soil

little snake plant cutting in a cup

Hey guys, today I’m sharing a post all about how to make succulent soil at home. Making your own succulent soil is a cost effective way to give your succulents (and other plants that enjoy well-draining soil) a great home without dropping a ton of cash on bags of succulent soil at the store.

This is just one way to make succulent soil. There are a lot of ways to do it and a lot of recipes out there; Succulents and Sunshine has another recipe you can try if this one doesn’t work out for you.

It’s really hard to go wrong with most of them, as long as you’re adding enough of the right materials to help water quickly drain through the soil. Succulents hail from hot, arid environments. No succulent likes to have its roots bogged down in soggy soil!

Wanted: Home for a Snake Plant Cutting

For this post, I am using a snake plant cutting as an example. You can read all about how to propagate snake plants in this post, including the way I’ve done it below: dividing the plant at its rhizome.

In case you don’t know, the rhizome is the white part in the photo below. It grows off of the main plant to create several baby plants. It’s technically just one plant sprouting up more growth, and many snake plant owners won’t see these connections because they are typically hidden below the soil.

However, I noticed new growth sprouting in one of my little snake plants and decided to dig it up to propagate the new growth. The white part below is where I cut off the new baby plant, which needed a new home in some well-draining potting soil.

Snake plant rhizome
Snake plant cutting from a rhizome

Want more plant propagation tips? Check out my guides about how to propagate prickly pear cactus pads from cuttings and how to propagate pothos plants.

How to Make Potting Soil for Succulents

The recipe I typically use for succulent soil is easy and veyr straightforward. It’s not an exact science, but it is made up of about 2.5 cups of potting soil, 1 cup of coarse sand, and 1 cup of perlite. So, the ratio looks like this: 2.5:1 potting soil, 1:1 coarse sand, 1:1 perlite.

I always have a bag of just perlite on hand because it’s one of the tricks I use to build drainage in to plant pots that don’t have any holes. As for the sand? Well, between you and me, I stole a cup from our weighed down outdoor umbrella stand for this mixture. It was from a bag of coarse sand from the paver area at Home Depot.

Don’t overthink the sand part…you don’t need to buy a sand specifically for potting soil. Just avoid the very very fine play sand. I didn’t want to buy a whole bag! Here’s to hoping that just one cup less in the base won’t make my umbrella fall over…

sand, soil, and perlite for a potting mix
perlite in a cup
sand in a cup
How to Make Succulent Soil

Since this mixture has only 1 cup of sand and 1 cup of perlite, I went ahead and mixed those together first. I did it in a cup by pouring it back and forth between the two original cups. Save yourself some time and mess and just do it in a bowl. It’s just dirt and will wash out. Plus it’s a lot easer. 🙂


I then dumped this mix and the potting soil in a bowl and used a butter knife to mix it thoroughly. The dull knife was also helpful when I wanted to break up bigger chunks in the soil.

perlite and sand mixed in a bowl
mixing diy succulent soil in a bowl
mixing diy succulent soil in a bowl

Planting my Snake Plant Cutting in DIY Succulent Soil

I planted my snake plant cutting just as I would any other plant. Since I’m planning to give this cutting to my brother’s girlfriend, I just planted it in one of the cups I’d used to mix the sand and perlite. Once it roots a bit, I’m sure she’ll replant it in something a bit prettier.

And that’s about it! See, I told you it was easy. If you do a lot of planting that requires well-draining soil (I use succulent soil for plants other than succulents occasionally), making your own at home can save you a few bucks. Happy planting!

how to make succulent soil
how to make succulent soil

Want plant care tips? Check out my guides for how to care for snake plants, how to care for pothos varieties, how to care for elephant ear varieties, caring for rubber plants, caring for prickly pear cactus pads, how to care for cape ivy, and caring for philodendron! Also check out my top tips for taking care of succulents indoors.

Share my tips about how to make succulent soil on Pinterest!

how to make succulent soil
how to make succulent soil
how to make succulent soil


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