Can Spider Plants Grow in LECA?

Do you want to grow your spider plant in LECA but you are not sure if it will survive in this environment? If yes, then read this article fully. You will get answers to all your questions regarding this topic.

LECA stands for “Lightweight Expanded Clay Aggregate”. This is essentially a pack of balls made by exposing clay to extremely high temperatures.

LECA balls have the capacity to absorb water quickly and then release it at a steady rate. It has a porous texture which allows the root system to easily get water and nutrients from the medium.

In this article, we will tell you about all the advantages and drawbacks of growing spider plant in LECA. Additionally, we will tell you about other growing methods that are suitable for this plant.

LECA balls ready to use for growing Spider Plant

Table of Contents

Can Spider Plant Grow in LECA?

Spider plant can grow fine in LECA because this growing medium reduces the risk of overwatering and pest infestation significantly. The only thing that you should consider before growing this plant in such a medium is to use a liquid fertilizer in order to substitute the nutrients normally found in soil.

When you grow spider plant in LECA you will get rid of all the problems related to the soil. For example, this plant is sensitive to damp soil and any kind of potting mix that does not promote drainage. But, if you use LECA you will never encounter this problem because the plant will get the water it needs gradually through the water absorption property of this medium.

Another thing that makes LECA one of the best growing mediums for spider plant is that it keeps pests away from the plant. In fact, when you grow a plant in soil, pests can easily get attracted to the organic matter and nutrients of this medium. However, LECA does not contain any organic matter and is composed of nothing but heated clay balls that do not attract pests.

One final thing that we want you to consider before growing your spider plant in LECA is to avoid using tap water. Generally, hydroponic gardening mediums such as LECA require fresh clean water. But, tap water contains various forms of chlorine and other chemicals that can harm your plants. 

So, make sure that you use only filtered or bottled water when you are going to use a hydroponic medium like LECA for your spider plant.

Do you want to grow a bushy spider plant? Click here to learn about this.

How to Grow Spider Plant in LECA?

Growing spider plant in LECA is straightforward, it’s even easier than growing them in soil. All you will need is to prepare a jar, LECA balls, fresh water, and liquid fertilizer, then follow the subsequent steps.

Step1: Start by soaking your LECA balls in non-chlorinated water for 24 hours. You can use filtered and distilled water because they are free from chlorine and mineral deposits.
Step 2: Get your jar and fill it halfway with the LECA balls.

Step 3: Hold your spider plant cutting in place and add the rest of the LECA balls.

Step 4: Add water until it is just under the roots. Then place the jar in a sunny spot in order to help the plant produce food quickly and stay warm. A south-facing window is the best option in this case. 

Step 5: Change water every week in order to avoid mold growth and maintain a healthy root system.

Step 6: Spray your plant with a diluted liquid fertilizer once every month during the growing season. Do not overdo it with fertilizers because they may burn the plant.

If you are interested in a visual tutorial on how to use LECA to grow your plants, check the following video:

Click here to check our latest article about growing spider plants outdoors.

What Are the Drawbacks of Growing Spider Plant in LECA?

Growing spider plants in LECA is generally expensive because they cost more than soil. Generally, the quantity of LECA required to grow a medium plant is 4 lbs which cost between 20 and 30 dollars. But if you decide to go with soil then you will only pay around 8 dollars to get a high-quality potting mix to grow a plant of the same size

Growing spider plant in LECA will also require a special fertilizer. If you are used to utilizing an all-purpose fertilizer or preparing your own organic fertilizer at home, then this will not be suitable in the case of using LECA as a growing medium.

Generally, hydroponic gardening requires a special type of fertilizer that can provide the plant with the necessary nutrients that are normally found in the soil.

Finally, using LECA to grow your spider plant will restrict your pot choice. Generally, all gardeners keep a collection of pots that has drainage holes. But, if you grow a plant in LECA, you will not be able to use these pots because LECA requires that water stays within the pot and gets absorbed by the clay balls gradually.

Can You Grow Spider Plants in Water Beads?

Spider plants can grow fine in water beads. The main advantage of this growing medium is that it can help control the water supply which reduces the risk of overwatering and root rot for the plant.

Water Beads in different colors

The beads are made from a special resin that hardens quickly when exposed to water. They come in many colors, sizes, and shapes, including circular, oval, square, and rectangular. This helps improve the esthetic properties of the spider plant.

Like LECA, water beads cannot provide the necessary nutrients that the plant gets from the soil. Therefore, using a liquid fertilizer at regular intervals is essential to avoid nutrient deficiencies in this medium.

When you grow spider plant in water beads, you will never need to worry about when to add water to the container. In fact, water beads change shape when they get wet. Therefore, you will need to add water to the container only when you see that the beads started shrinking.

To grow your spider plant in water beads, you can follow the same instructions that we gave for LECA. Start by adding water and liquid fertilizer to the beads. Then, bring a glass container in order to make use of the appealing appearance of the beads. After that, you should fill the container halfway up with the beads and place your plant on the top of the pot. Finally, add the remaining beads to the pot and place it in a sunny location.

If you found our content helpful, click here to read our article about growing spider plant in water.

Diana Cox

I'm Diana from I love to spend my free time in my garden. It's a place where I can be creative, feel calm and learn new things about life. I started gardening when I was in elementary school and it became a passion of mine. Now I love to share my love of gardening with others by teaching classes and giving advice.

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