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What's the difference between garden soil, seed raising mx and potting mix?

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What's the difference between garden soil, seed raising mx and potting mix?

During the lockdown, I had been thinking of upgrading my kitchen garden, hoping to find the right soil mix for my vegetables, I grew mints, potatoes, and beans, and I am going to get some tomato plants, I had been looking for the right soil mix for weeks still haven't decided which one is best, please help me to find the right one, thank you. 😃

Bunnings Team Member
Bunnings Team Member

Re: What's the difference between garden soil, seed raising mx and potting mix?

Hello @MaggieH


Welcome to the Bunnings Workshop community. Thank you so much for joining us and sharing your question about what is the difference between garden soil, seed raising mix, and potting mix.


This sounds like the start of an amazing garden. When placed into categories, Scotts Osmocote 25L Seed & Cutting Premium Potting Mix contains extra ingredients to help seeds grow. They often have trace elements, wetting agents, water crystals, and coir peat to help seeds grow. The seeding mix is usually very fine and is formulated to make it easy for seedlings to push through. Scotts Osmocote 25L Garden Soil Premium Planting Mix, on the other hand, contains controlled-release fertilizer, wetting agent, growth stimulants, and trace elements. Depending on the brand that you buy, some may contain manure and organic matter. The difference between garden soil and potting soil depends on the brand and type of plant you are planning to grow.


A good example of this is tomato plants, I recommend using Scotts Osmocote 25L Tomato, Vegetable & Herb Premium Potting Mix. It contains almost the same ingredients as the Garden Soil mix but has an extra element of calcium. This allows the plant to build strong cell walls and provides transport for other minerals in its system. 


Here is a handy guide about soil: How to determine soil health by @Noelle


Here is a link to growing tomatoes: How to grow tomatoes - from seed to harvest by @Adam_W


Please keep us updated, we look forward to seeing your seedlings grow.




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Valued Contributor

Re: What's the difference between garden soil, seed raising mx and potting mix?

Hi @MaggieH 

The main difference between a potting mix or manufactured growing medium and natural soil is that the potting mix has been scientifically formulated to provide as close to ideal growing conditions for plants as possible.

On the other hand, garden soil is what it is - naturally occurring soil made by nature over millions of years of weather as well as animal, plant and human activity. Its quality depends on the types of rocks and minerals native to the local area as well as climate.

Bagged garden soil, available in Bunnings, is much more like a potting mix than natural soil but it doesn't usually contain the same level of nutrients, wetting agents and water storing products as premium quality potting mixes.

EricL's recommendations are on the money!


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