Vermiculite is a hydrous phyllosilicate mineral which undergoes significant expansion (exfoliation) when heated. It is very lightweight and mixes easily with other mediums. Due to its properties, Vermiculite has a remarkably wide range of applications. Low bulk density, low thermal conductivity, odor-free, chemical inertness, easy handle and fire resistance are the features that render Vermiculite a highly versatile and promising material.
Among others, Vermiculite can be used as high-temperature insulating refractory material. On top of that, when it is combined with other aggregates such as expanded shale, clay and slate produces refractory concretes and insulation materials.
Vermiculite has been successfully used as soil improver in Horticulture and Agriculture helping the plants to thrive.
- It increases aeration and moisture retention, saving 30-50% water.
- Through its high Cation-Exchange Capacity (CEC), Vermiculite minimizes fertilizer leaching.
- It is an excellent carrier and extender for fertilizer and pesticides and works well as packing material for bulbs and tubers.
- Vermiculite helps plants growing faster and it is ideal for transplanting, flowers arranging, newly seeded lawns and roots cutting.
- Exfoliated Vermiculite by Mathios Refractories is Asbestos free, non-toxic and environmentally safe.
Perlite is a form of amorphous volcanic glass with the unusual property of greatly expanding when heated sufficiently. Its unique characteristics enable its applications to extend over many industries, including construction, horticulture, industrial, and many others.
In industrial settings, Perlite is often used as hightemperature insulation in foundry cores, molds, and ovens, and as a crucible topping. In addition, it is commonly mixed into masonry products such as lightweight plasters, ceiling tiles and others for stability or as an insulator - but to gardeners, it’s an essential ingredient to use.
Perlite is an ideal compost additive for healthy root development. Due to its features, it helps to retain air in the fertilizer and stores nutrients and moisture. It creates the ideal balance of air and water, and minimises root damage when transplanting. It accelerates rooting and reduces the risk of fungal diseases.
- Aerates soil and promotes root growth
- Non-toxic, Clean and Disease-free
- Helps loosen heavy soils
- Prevents compaction.
- Loosens clay soil
- Improves drainage and aeration
- Helps plants thrive
- Improves soil structure
- Extremely lightweight and easy to work with
- Keeps soil workable for years
When comparing vermiculite versus Perlite, Vermiculite is very moisture retentive. It will absorb water and nutrients and keep them in the soil, which makes it perfect for seed starting blends or for plants that prefer lots of water. When combining with Perlite, Vermiculite will absorb water and nutrients to feed your plants, while Perlite will help drain the excess water away. So both Vermiculite and Perlite are not interchangeable but they have their own significant place in the garden, even in the same container or bed.