Do Spider Plants Need Drainage?

Are you growing spider plants but you are not sure whether they require drainage or not? Do you want to know the answer to this question? If yes, then read this article thoroughly to get all your questions regarding this topic answered.

Spider plants need drainage to grow healthy. If you grow this plant without drainage the soil can easily become waterlogged which causes the plant to rot and develop fungus. Additionally, a poor drainage system can make your spider plant vulnerable to pests such as termites and cockroaches.

In the following paragraphs, we will tell you how to provide good drainage for your spider plant as well as how to water this plant correctly in order to avoid overwatering.

Let’s get started!

Digging drainage holes into a plastic pot before using it to grow spider plant

Table of Contents

Do Spider Plants Need Drainage?

The main reason why spider plant needs drainage is that it is a plant that does not tolerate overwatering. When you grow such a plant in a poor drainage system, it will automatically get overwatered, no matter how much water you give it. That is why it is very important to provide good drainage for this kind of plant.

Growing spider plants without drainage can also lead to the build-up of chemicals in the soil. This will most likely happen when you grow this plant without drainage and use chemical fertilizers or tap water. In this case, the chemicals can transform the soil into a toxic environment, which can lead to the death of the plant. 

Without drainage, spider plants can also experience root rot. When the plant sits in water for a long time, the roots swell and eventually start to rot, causing the entire plant to die.

If you are interested in spider plant light requirements, you can click here to read our article about this topic.

How Do I Offer Proper Drainage for Spider Plants?

To offer good drainage for spider plants, you need to grow them in well-draining potting soil and use a pot made out of porous materials such as clay and terracotta. 

To make sure that your potting soil will offer good drainage, you need to add one of the following elements to it:

Peat Moss: This is a spongy, organic substance that is made up of decomposed plant matter. It is widely used as a natural fertilizer and can be used in growing mediums. Peat moss absorbs and holds water while allowing air to penetrate through it, which allows your plants to breathe more easily.

Compost: this is a mixture of plant material that is often mixed with manure or other organic materials. Compost adds nutrients to the soil and helps it retain moisture while improving drainage. It also helps to aerate the soil, making it easier for roots to reach moisture and nutrients.

Perlite: This is a granular mineral product made from volcanic rock and limestone that has been processed into small, round, hollow pellets. When Perlite is added to soil, it expands and creates tiny air pockets within the soil, which allows for better drainage.

Vermiculite: This is used as a filler in potting mediums to allow for good drainage of the soil while keeping the soil from compacting. When it is added to a potting mix, the vermiculite expands in volume and allows the soil to expand, thus giving the plants a larger volume to grow in. It also holds water and helps to absorb nutrients, and therefore is very useful for gardening.

Sand: Sand acts as a sponge, soaking up water and holding it in the soil, which improves water retention and drainage. It also helps to stabilize the soil by adding weight.

Gravel: This is a fine-grained, inorganic material consisting of tiny rounded grains or pebbles.  It’s used to improve the drainage of the soil, especially clay-based soil. It allows water to seep through the soil, so it doesn’t stay in the top layer of the soil, preventing root rot and other problems. The best way to use gravel is by putting a 3-inch layer of it beneath the soil line (the bottom of your pots). It will help prevent water from sitting on top of the soil, keeping it from evaporating and getting lost in the top layer.

Mulch: This is basically any organic material that is laid on the surface of the soil. It prevents weeds, retains moisture, and keeps the soil cool.

Before adding any of the elements mentioned above to your soil, you should take into consideration that you are not supposed to use all of them in order to get the best results. Sometimes, only peat moss or vermiculite alone can make your soil drain freely.

Here is our recommended soil mix recipe for spider plant:

  • 1 part perlite.
  • Three parts organic potting soil mix.
  • A handful of compost.
  • A handful of coconut vermiculite.

The other factor that will make your spider plant’s soil drain well is the choice of the pot. Generally, you should use a pot with drainage holes that will allow excess water to run off. But most importantly, you should opt for a pot made out of a porous material that will allow the soil to absorb water through its holes and pores.

You can check the following youtube video if you are interested in a simple yet non-expensive way of preparing well-draining soil:

How to prepare a well-draining potting mix using cheap materials

Now, let’s see which pot materials can offer the best drainage for a spider plant.

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

What Is the Best Pot for Growing Spider Plants?

The best pots for growing spider plants are made from clay, terra cotta, and ceramic. Because they are porous, these pots allow for good drainage. In addition, they are very resilient and which makes them resistant to cracking and breaking.

A set of ceramic pots: one of the Best Pots for Growing Spider Plants

Terra cotta pots are similar to clay pots but they are made from a lightweight material, so they are easy to move around and are ideal for indoor potting. 

Ceramic pots are also recommended for spider plant because they are durable, porous, and allow for good drainage. But, their main advantage is that they are made from a natural product that does not leach into the soil and the water.

Click here if you want to know more about the drainage requirements of spider plant.

If you want to use a plastic pot for your spider plant, you should make sure that it has drainage holes in the bottom. If you have a plastic pot without drainage holes then you should create them on your own using a drill.

Another thing to consider when choosing a pot for a spider plant is the size. Generally, this plant likes to be a bit pot-bound. Therefore, you should avoid growing it in a pot that is too large.

Finally, it is best to choose a pot that matches the shape and color of your plant as well as the location where you will grow it. This will ensure that the aesthetic qualities of the plant blend in with your home decor.

Do you want to know if spider plant can grow root bound? Click here to get the answer.


Spider plants need well-draining soil to prevent excess moisture from accumulating around the roots.
Without optimal drainage spider plant’s leaves will start to yellow or wilt.
To fix this issue, you might consider using a pot with drainage holes or adding perlite or pumice to the soil to improve drainage.
It’s also a good idea to avoid letting your spider plant sit in standing water. If the pot doesn’t have drainage holes, empty any excess water from the saucer after watering.
In general, the key to good drainage for your spider plant is to find the right balance. You don’t want the soil to be too dry or too wet, but just moist enough to support the plant’s growth. With a bit of attention and care, your spider plant should be happy and healthy in no time!

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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