What are clay balls and what are they used for?

You may have seen them at some time in the nurseries, and you have even thought that they only serve to decorate. But the truth is that clay balls are excellent for improving the drainage of substrates. And there are many plants that do not tolerate excess water, such as cacti and succulents. For this reason, in addition to choosing a soil that has everything they need to feed and grow, it is important to ensure that it drains quickly.

But what are clay balls? And how are they used?

What are clay balls?

These balls are made with clay, as the name suggests. They are cooked at very high temperatures, which causes their expansion. They are, therefore, natural, as well as light. They have a diameter of more or less 1cm, the perfect size to prevent them from coming out of the holes in the pot .

And if this seems little to you, you should know that they are cheap. To give you an idea, a 6l bag costs about 5-9 euros.

How are they used?

Clay balls have several uses in gardening, which are:

10% mixed with peat, compost or mulch type substrates

We will ensure that the roots of the plants are better aerated, which will help them to grow stronger and healthier.

Placed on the plate in the pots

This prevents the roots from being in contact with excess water. In addition, a high humidity is maintained that will undoubtedly do the plant a lot of good.

As mulch for plants

It is decorative and functional. The earth will not dry out as quickly, since the clay balls will prevent, or at least slow down, the passage of sunlight to the ground, so it will remain humid for longer. Thus, we will save water.

Growing medium in hydroponics

If you like the world of hydroponics, that is, growing plants in water in specific systems, one of the most used substrates is expanded clay because of how cheap it is and how easy it is to get it.

Used as a substrate for orchids

Mixed with pine bark, they help regulate the exchange between water and air. Of course, before using them, they have to be soaked.

Clay balls for cactus

Cacti, and indeed most succulents, need to grow on land with excellent drainage. They are very sensitive to overwatering, so one of the things to do to take good care of them is to make sure that excess irrigation water can be drained easily.

One way to do this is by mixing equal parts black peat with clay balls. Anyway, if you live in an area where the humidity is very high, it is better that you put more balls of clay than peat in that mixture.

Where to buy expanded clay for plants?

This product can be purchased in different places, such as:


On Amazon they sell a wide variety of things, and of course they also have clay balls for plants. Buying it there is very interesting, since as buyers can leave their opinions, it will be easy for you to be calm from the first moment. In addition, you will only have to pay and wait for it to be delivered to you at home.

Leroy Merlin

At the Leroy Merlin you can also buy your bag or bag of clay for your plants, but to avoid problems you have to go to a physical store.


At Verdecora they sell many things for the garden and the care of plants. Among the various products they have, one of them is of course the clay balls, which you can buy from their online store or from a store.

How to get it?

You can buy it from here and enjoy its benefits by watching your plants grow correctly.

Did you know the uses of clay balls? We hope it helps you .

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