How to Make Your Own DIY Potting Mix

Make your own easy-peasy DIY potting mix and save money with a more sustainable solution for growing your own seedlings.

We love the excitement of sprouting our own seedlings at home, but potting and seed raising mix don’t come cheap.

So we’ve come up with the perfect recipe for making your own DIY potting mix. This recipe offers options to use a range of different growing mediums, depending on what you have to hand.

For nutrients, finely sieved compost or worm castings, or even a mix will do the trick. For moisture retention you can use homemade leaf mold or rotted sawdust as a very low food miles alternative to sustainably harvested coconut coir peat (which is what most people use) and is readily available at gardening stores.

And for drainage, a good handful of sand (pilfered from the sand pit, a building site or wherever else you can get your hands on some!).

DIY Potting Mix Recipe

Make Your Own DIY Potting Mix


  • 1 part nutrient medium: finely sieved compost or worm castings, or a mix.
  • 1 part moisture retention medium: coconut coir peat, leaf mold or rotted sawdust.
  • And for drainage: a handful of sand.

Step one: Sieve your compost

We used some of our latest batch of hot compost (which means it will be mostly weed-seed free) and sieved it through our homemade compost sieve (made of fine chook mesh and an old window frame).

Our compost was teeming with worms, and if you find yours is too, then rescue them before they get mushed through the sieve!

Make Your Own DIY Potting Mix 1

Step Two: Mix up your growing mediums

We trialled two different batches of moisture retention medium to add to our potting mix: leaf mold and coconut coir peat.

If using coconut coir peat, follow the instructions on the pack to fluff it up with water. We’re looking forward to seeing if there’s much difference in germination and growing between the two batches.

Mix through a handful of sand. Now you’re ready to start sowing. Happy growing!

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