Leca is an acronym to mean Leca, which stands for Lightweight Expanded Clay Aggregate and is made up of clay balls which can be used in place of potting soil to support certain indoor plants. The plants which thrive on Leca are the ones that are susceptible to root rot if they are overwatered however, it also relies upon the system of rooting.
The most suitable flowers to use for Leca include Monstera orchids, Sansevieria Alocasia Spider plants, begonias, ZZ plant, Anthuriums, Peace Lily Bromeliads Peperomias Burro’s tail pineapple plants, philodendrons Hoyas and syngoniums. Haworthia, and Ficus. Pitcher plants as well as String of Pearls won’t do the same.
Leca does not provide any nutrients, like soil which is why you must make use of the liquid fertilizers to provide your plants with food when they’re growing in Leca.
Best Plants For Leca – Plants To Grow in Leca
It’s a different method to grow plants and could require some time to master. This article will look at typical Indoor plants which thrive within Leca and others that might not.
Monstera is a big-leaved indoor plant that is often suggested for novices. It is not a fan of wet feet and can develop root rot when the soil is constantly wet constantly.
Monstera is thriving within Leca because:
- The water doesn’t build up around the plant’s root systems and prevents them from receiving the air they require.
- Leca greatly reduces the chance of watering too much and the risk of your Monstera developing root rot, because the clay balls expand when they absorb moisture and leave the roots dry
- Monstera in leca lets the roots sip the water when they require instead of being constantly in contact with it.
- Leca is able to drain much more efficiently than soil, and doesn’t get as wet.
The water should be in the right pH. You will require an instrument to test it and ensure that it’s somewhere between 5.5 to 6.5. The roots must be placed over in the bottom third to get optimal results since the lower third functions as the reservoir for water.
About seventy percent of orchids are epiphytes, meaning they are cultivated in other plant species, like trees.
The roots absorb the water in the water that accumulates within the forks of branches as well as the rough bark. The roots of the tree are exposed to the air above the ground.
Orchids are extensive and diverse, that includes Oncidiums, Phalaenopsis Dendrobiums, Oncidiums, and Cattleyas They can also be sensitive to pH changes.
Although Leca is advertised to be pH neutral some orchid growers have noticed that Leca substantially raises the pH of water, making it more alkaline.
Orchids in Leca Leca – Orchids can be successfully grown in Leca due to:
- The epiphytic orchids’ roots are used to being exposed to the air. They don’t like being in water. Leca Leca lets air circulate around them.
- The roots are designed to absorb water from surfaces they are growing on
- Overwatering is less likely when using Leca
- Leca conserves moisture for a time, which means it will be accessible even if you fail to drink water every now and then
Sansevieria – Snake Plant in Leca
Sansevieria is also known by its name snake plant is tough indoor plant that needs to be carefully watered.
It’s great for indoors because it can withstand any lighting condition, but it doesn’t like constant overwatering since it’s adapted to dry, drought-like conditions. This is what makes Leca perfect for Sansevieria.
Leca is a great medium to grow for Sansevieria due to:
- It shields the roots from water, while also providing an unstoppable water supply when they require it
- It disperses the water evenly throughout the pot.
- This allows for air to move throughout the root more easily and prevents root rot.
- It is a great drain which means that the roots won’t remain in the water.
Alocasias have tiny rhizomes from which roots protrude. They occasionally, they also contain tiny bulbs. The bulbs and rhizomes store water, and the plant is not able to react well to excessive watering since it is a self-sustaining plant. Alocasia is a reservoir of its own.
Alocasias in Leca Alocasias in Leca Alocasias are great in Leca due to:
- The task of removing soil from the roots is simple when you transfer them to Leca because they don’t have a large root system.
- They are susceptible to spider mites, but getting rid of them is easier when they are within Leca since you are able to wash all the plant completely prior to applying the neem oil on the leaves
- It is easier to check the roots of these plants for pests and diseases.
- It is simpler to prevent overwatering since you are able to simply take the excess water out
One Leca user shared that Zebrina as well as Polly Alocasias were sick . They were suffering from root rot, which attracted insects.
They were changed to Leca and cleaned them each week to get rid of unhealthy and dead roots, and they completed a complete recovery and were healthy plants once more.
Spider plants are tough and fast-growing. They are thirsty and easy to care for. The roots of spider plants readily absorb water and are unable to tolerate the spongy soil for long and will rot rapidly.
It is possible to grow them with only water, and can also thrive in the semi-hydroponic conditions which Leca offers.
Plants that spider in Leca The Spider plants thrive well in Leca due to:
- They don’t require a lot of water, as the balls of clay prevent the water from coming into contact directly with the roots.
- They prefer dry , porous soil therefore Leca is a good choice.
- They rely on the nutrients that are stored in their roots, which is why they don’t require a soil that is full of nutrients to develop
- They prefer the substrate’s ability to dry out between waterings, and they will end up dying if the substrate is constantly wet. Because the clay balls of Leca are able to absorb moisture, they keep the spider plant’s roots dry
- It is more difficult to submerge the spider plant using Leca because the balls hold more water than soil
Begonias thrive in Leca because they help provide constant access to water. The lush stems as well as rhizomes can be susceptible to rot in soil that is wet. They are often destroyed by excessive watering and the soil must allow to dry out between the watering.
Begonias that are the most effective house plants have fibrous or rhizomatous root systems. They love humidity, but are vulnerable to fungi that thrive in moist conditions.
Begonias in Leca Begonias in Leca Begonias thrive in Leca due to:
- Leca Leca maintains their roots in a moist, but not wet.
- A healthy air circulation system around the roots greatly reduces the chance of root decay.
- Leca is slower to dry than soil, ensuring that the plant can access water at the time it is needed
- It lowers the chance of water overflowing.
- The layer that forms the base of Leca stops the roots from soaking into the water.
There are some who say Pothos will not do well in Leca due to the fact that they’ll be susceptible to losing their roots. Some say that they’re perfectly in Leca however, you should be cautious regarding the amount of water you offer them.
If the Leca does not take in enough water Pothos might not be able to thrive as well, which is why it’s crucial not to place Leca’s roots far away from the water that is nutrient-rich.
Pothos in Leca Pothos in Leca Pothos could be a good fit in Leca due to:
- The clay balls permit a large amount of oxygen to reach root systems, and that’s exactly what Pothos requires.
- The water drains quickly around the roots , while being present in the clay balls that are soaked
- Pothos will not suffer root-rot than Leca
- Pothos are semi-epiphytes. Therefore, their roots require space to expand, and Leca can provide this
- Transferring a pothos that has been propagated by water into Leca is easier to manage and less stressful than putting it in soil
- There is no chance of the medium growing getting too compacted.
ZZ plants grow slowly and come with bulbs and long roots which store water for the dry season.
This is the plant you must not drown if you want it to live. It is recommended for novices since it thrives even when it’s neglected, as it’s more self-sufficient than most indoor plants.
ZZ plant species in Leca Leca ZZ plants will thrive in Leca due to:
- Their roots are prone to the level of moisture and prefer dry substrates. Leca Leca removes the water from the roots and stores it within the clay
- It is simpler to prevent the over-watering of ZZ plant in Leca since you can observe the levels of water in the reservoir.
- Leca’s roots have exposure to greater amounts of air inside Leca than they are in soil this means that root decay is less likely
Anthuriums are susceptible to the dangers caused by excessive watering. Their natural habitat is the trunks of trees, which generally don’t have standing soil or water.
They can be adapted to meet their water requirements by getting water from the air and rainwater that flows through the tree.
Anthuriums in Leca Anthuriums will be growing very well in Leca due to:
- There is a lot greater air flow in Leca as compared to soil, and Anthurium naturally produces aerial roots
- The roots aren’t saturated when they are grown in Leca in contrast to soil
- The risks of overwatering are less if the roots aren’t in the reservoir since the plant is able to sip water whenever it wants to
Bromeliads are epiphytes that are found on trees within the natural environment. They thrive in small pots and low-soil substrates like orchid mix, which is a mixture of sphagnum moss and sphagnum bark and can be planted on logs or the moss alone.
This is what makes Leca the ideal medium for growth for Bromeliads as they are designed to thrive outside of the soil.
After being transplanted into Leca the roots of the plant have to adjust and secure themselves to the clay balls, which means they may take a while to settle.
Bromeliads found in Leca – Leca can be ideal for Bromeliads due to:
- It increases the soil’s humidity without submerging them in water.
- This allows air to move more freely through the roots.
- It’s not a source of nutrients, therefore it can be used to manage the amount of nutrients.
- Bromeliads are used to growing in soilless substrates
Peace Lilies don’t store much water, and they will quickly inform you that they’re thirsty when their leaves drop and begin to wilt. They require to remain moist, which isn’t easy for an indoor gardener who is busy because constant monitoring is required.
To move the Peace Lily from soil to Leca it is necessary to get rid of the dirt completely and then cut off certain roots. You can make this transfer if needed.
Peace Lilies in Leca – Peace Lilies grow well in Leca due to:
- It helps keep the roots dry for longer, without exposing them to large amounts of water.
- The plant manages its own water intake by drawing water from the clay balls in the clay balls when it is required.
- It stops overwatering
- This prevents it from becoming dry and turning wilting between waterings
Peperomias do not have huge and complex root systems, which makes it easy to overwater them in the soil.
The roots require air for breathing and to absorb oxygen, however, too much water hinders this, and they drown. The roots rapidly turn into mucus if they’re too hydrated and vulnerable to infection by bacteria.
Peperomias in Leca is a good choice due to:
- It isn’t home to harmful micro-organisms that could attach to the roots
- Leca doesn’t decay or rot
- It lets air circulate, so the roots are able to take in all of the oxygen that they require
- Their broad leaves and stems are able to store water, which means the plant doesn’t require much of it.
- It is not necessary to feed them every day and they are better placed to determine the amount of water you should give them.
Burro’s Donkey Tail
The Burro’s tail, also known as donkey tail is an succulent that holds water in its fleshy leaves. It prefers a well-drained, gritty soil as well as warm temperatures to flourish. It requires a moist, not saturated substrate, and excessive watering can cause it to die.
Donkey tails is in Leca – Leca is a great match for Burro’s Tail due to:
- The roots remain dry for longer, without oversaturating the roots with water.
- It’s not nutrient-rich, so feeding can be more controlled
- The tail of the Burro needs plenty of air surrounding its roots, which Leca easily provides
- Leca stops overwatering to a large extent
- The clay balls help to wick excess moisture away
Branching Philodendrons are more tolerant to Leca than those that trail. Some examples of branches in Philodendrons include Prince of Orange, Pink Princess, as well as Jungle Boogie. Examples of trails of Philodendrons include Rio, Brazil, Heartleaf, as well as Philodendron Micans.
Philodendrons prefer well-drained substrates and their leaves drop when they are exposed to too much or not enough water.
Philodendrons in Leca The Leca Philodendrons Philodendrons thrive in Leca due to:
- The water level is maintained at a level below that of the roots.
- The clay balls provide structure and aid in helping the roots get plenty of oxygen
- The availability of water to people is much more constant within Leca as compared to soil
- Leca removes fungus gnats which could harm plants
Pineapple plants thrive in hydroponic systems as well as semi-hydroponics, like Leca. The soil they require is well-drained, and are drought-tolerant, which is why they aren’t a good choice when they are flooded.
Their food source must remain dry, and they require nitrogen to ensure proper development of their fruit.
Pineapple plant in Leca The Leca area is a paradise for pineapple plants. Pineapple plants thrive in Leca due to:
- The roots remain dry, but it does not make them waterlogged.
- It permits more precise feeding, so you can be sure that your plant receives all the nutrients it requires by applying water-soluble fertilizers
- The nutrients are more readily available through the root system than in soil
- The plant is developing faster.
Syngoniums, also referred to as arrow-head vines, require frequent watering , but require well-drained soil. The soil must be dry between waterings. However, if it is left wet for too long the plants begin becoming brown and require a steady and balanced supply of water.
Syngoniums are epiphytes, which means that their roots require good air circulation.
Syngoniums have these characteristics that are what make them perfect plants for Leca due to:
- Leca isn’t as dry and quickly as soil, but it gives steady and consistent access to water
- Leca stops the roots from being in water for long time, reducing the chance of root decay.
- Leca balls permit a lot more air circulation around the rootballs than soil.
- It is easier to monitor the level of water when you water the Syngonium in Leca
Hoyas are also epiphytes , which signifies that, in nature, they live on trees. Their roots need a lot of oxygen, but not a lot of nutrients.
Hoyas increase in size faster when the humidity, however they don’t require high humidity to thrive in Leca.
Hoya in Leca The benefits of the planting of Hoya within Leca are:
- Leca lets the plant manage its water consumption by taking in water when it is required to
- It is not necessary to keep checking the levels of moisture in the substrate or water until it is dry because Leca balls are able to hold more water than soil.
- It is safe to maintain the watering schedule according to your own schedule instead of following the plant’s instructions since the Leca serves as an obstacle between roots as well as excessive water.
- You can easily check the Hoya’s root for root rot, and trim off the ones that are sick
- Hoya quickly develops roots in water if you remove the roots that were growing in the soil in which it was planted.
- It helps maintain a more balanced equilibrium between water and oxygen than soil.
Haworthia is a drought-resistant plant that holds water within its leaves. Therefore, it requires very less water and the soil for potting must be allowed to dry out between irrigations.
If the leaves begin to turn yellow, it is an indication of excessive watering and root rot. On the other hand, when the tips of the leaves are brown or red it is an indication of submerging.
Leca is the ideal choice for Haworthia due to:
- It shields the roots from the water, while also wicking it out of the reservoir toward them.
- It helps to increase airflow to the roots, allowing them to develop faster and healthier.
- It lowers the chance of root rot and overwatering.
- It reduces stress on plants caused by water and nutrient imbalances
If you are growing Haworthia in Leca the pot must have drainage holes on its sides, about two or three centimetres away from the base to ensure that the reservoir doesn’t rise to a height that is too high.
It is necessary to wash the clay pellets using clean water to eliminate any accumulation of salts each month prior to applying liquid fertilizer.
There’s a wide variety of plants within the Euphorbia family, ranging from the size of tiny plants to trees and shrubs.
There are about 2 000 species of plants, some which are succulents , or have sharp spines that look like Cacti. For use as houseplants, Euphorbias require well-drained soil, and lots of light.
Crown of Thorns is often planted indoors and produces stunning flowers. When you plant succulent euphorbias in Leca it is important to water them in the same manner as when they were growing in the soil, instead of filling up the reservoir.
Certain types of euphorbia can thrive in Leca due to:
- It decreases the chance of overwatering
- They require a properly-draining substrate
- They require a lot in air flow around the roots
- They don’t like feet that are wet.
- Leca reduces plant pests
Ficus plants are sensitive water overflow and flooding, which is why Leca is the ideal growing medium for them.
The Ficus plant in Leca is a good choice for ficus because: Leca is ideal for ficus due to:
- It lets the plant self-regulate, using only water when it is required.
- Allows for an easy flow of water without oversaturating the roots
- Reduces the chance of decay and root rot
- It makes it simple to water them since you can utilize an instrument to measure water levels
It acts as an obstacle in between roots and reservoir of water
Senecio plants, also known as ‘String or pearls or ‘String of Bananas according to the kind you’ve got, are grown on the soil in their natural habitat.
They require only a little water, and some suggest that it is not advisable to plant the Senecio plant in Leca due to the fact that their growth could be reduced, and the plant could be dormant.
Since the delicate stems and leaves retain the water, they release the water throughout the plant when and when required, meaning the plant is equipped with its own water reservoir.
It isn’t required to use the reservoir of water provided by Leca, and it is more beneficial to plant the plants in a healthy soil.
Pitcher plants, also known as Nepenthes are carnivores and take the majority of their nutrition from insects.
They are typically found in wetlands, and are used to conditions similar to bogs. If you are growing pitcher plant in Leca it is recommended not to apply any fertilisers with high levels of hydroponic options like you would for other plants since Pitcher plants aren’t able to thrive in fertile media.
Pitcher plants are a possibility in Leca however, you must have to be prepared. There have been mixed reports from people and have said that some Nepenthes appear to flourish and others do not.
The clay balls could absorb excessive moisture from the roots and hairs on the root, or they may be killed by the use of hydroponic fertilizers that are overly abundant.
Leca For Plants Conclusion
The majority of indoor plants thrive in Leca however, a few like Pothos Pitcher plants as well as String of Pearls may not.
The plants in Leca effectively eliminate the problems of insects, overwatering and underwatering. They stay more moist than soil, which makes irrigation much easier.