What Is Bio Gel Soil?

Written by ian willson
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What Is Bio Gel Soil?
Plants with short root stalks such as bamboo do well with bio gel. (Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

Bio gel is a 100% biodegradable decorative potting soil alternative that can be used to spruce up a vase and keep both potted plants and floral decorations fresh and full of the nutrients they need to thrive. Bio gel not only cuts down on watering needs for your plant but can also spruce up vases and other plant displays by adding colour.

How it Works

Bio Gel soil is usually sold in small packages full of tiny solid balls. These balls, or crystals, are capable of holding up to 400 times their weight in water and also contain nutrients essential to healthy plant growth. Upon adding water, the balls expand significantly in size and add a pleasing decorative dimension to any floral display. The bio gel typically retains water for four to six weeks and is reusable for up to seven years.


Bio gel works best with potted plants that have shallow root systems, such as bamboo or dracaena. To fill a pot or vase, add the bio gel to one litre of water and allow to sit for eight hours, then drain excess water. Clean the root system of your plant and place it in the bio gel. When the balls in the bio gel begin to shrink, spray top balls with water. When you are done with the bio gel, add it to soil in your yard. It is 100% biodegradable and non-toxic.


Bio gel can also be used with your outdoor soil as an additive. Though the aesthetic value of the bio gel is lost when it is mixed with soil, the balls will still act as a fertiliser, spreading the nutrients in the bio gel into the soil and surrounding plants. Additionally, due to it's large and fluctuating size, the bio gel helps to aerate the soil and provide oxygen to plants and beneficial microbial life in the soil.

Bio Gel, Oil Stain Removal

A second manufactured product with the name bio gel also exists. Not to be confused with bio gel used as soil, this bio gel is used to remove oil and oil stains from soil, gravel and stones. This product is used for biological remediation of contaminated sites and is not readily commercially available. It utilises specific enzymes and bacteria that digest oil and clean soil. Again, this is a separate bio gel product manufactured for a different purpose than bio gel soil replacement.

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