Miracle-Gro Expand ‘N Gro Potting Soil Review

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Review of the Miracle-Gro Expand ‘N Gro Potting Soil

As of this writing, there were 109 customer comments and 14 answered questions for the Miracle-Gro Expand ‘N Gro Potting Soil.  I’ve read through the customer feedback, and then condensed the results into this review.  I hope that this helps you when shopping for potting soil.

Best Fea​tures

  • check Plants should grow 3 times bigger with this soil
  • check Feeds up to 6 months 
  • check Holds 50% more water than basic potting soil
  • check 90% more air space when water is added
  • check Can be used in-ground or in containers

Item Specifics

The Miracle-Gro Expand ‘N Gro Potting Soil is a great alternative to garden soil and potting mix.  It can be used in-ground or in containers.  The plants will grow up to three times bigger than they would in native soil.  This potting soil feeds up to 6 months.  It holds up to 50% more water than basic potting soil.  This potting soil will expand up to three times when water is added, and it will create up to 90% more air space in native soil.  With the extra air, your plants will have room to grow and thrive.


Many customers commented on how lightweight the Miracle-Gro Expand ‘N Gro Potting Soil is for carrying and planting.  The lightness of the bag makes it easy to carry and also easy to work with.  Here is a comment from a customer about the weight of the soil, “I live in a condo on the 6th floor with a great patio garden. The lightness of this bag of potting soil is a good thing! And I get so much more bang for my buck, as this does expand nicely, filling my containers. The plants are really happy and growing nicely with their Miracle-Gro nutrients. Wait til you see them in the next couple weeks!! I have a couple of tomatoes that are about ready to turn red.”

Mold Could Develop

A lot of customers complained about mold.  Here is one of the many mold comments, “I am seeing an issue with mold. There is no mold in the pots I used a different soil in, only the miracle grow pots. Luckily it’s harmless to animals and humans but it’s a very annoying issue I’ve been trying to fix ever since. It happened in the first couple days when putting the soil in (these pots do have drainage holes and I hadn’t watered them since planting due to not wanting them to get over wet). Trying to fix it with cinnamon so far hasn’t worked, not sure what to do.”

Expands 3X It’s Size

The Miracle-Gro Expand ‘N Gro Potting Soil will expand 3 X it’s size.  Here is a comment that a customer left about how it increases in size, “I was a bit skeptical about this “Expand ‘n Gro” potting soil… since most potting soil expands naturally when you add water. But this stuff really does expand by 2 to 3 times the size of the dry mix. I took a picture of some of this in a bowl when dry, then I added enough water to fully saturate it, about 2x the volume of the dry soil. In the second picture you can see that the soil has swelled up to about 2x what it was when dry. Impressive.”

No Vermiculite

The Miracle-Gro Expand ‘N Gro Potting Soil does not have vermiculite in it.  Some customers recommended adding vermiculite or keeping some on hand in case you need it.  Here is what one customer shared, “That said, the soil is a bit on the heavy side and I think it’s a very good idea to keep a bag of vermiculite or something similar nearby so that you can lighten and loosen the soil as you fill the pot(s). Plants grow much better when the roots don’t have to fight too hard to spread out, or at least hat has been my experience. I’m primarily potting up things like clivia miniata (kaffir lily) and a few very big Christmas cacti that I only repot every few years.”

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  • plus Lightweight
  • plus All around good plant soil
  • plus Expands 3X it’s size


  • close Expensive
  • close No Vermiculite
  • close Tendencies to mold

Miracle-Gro Expand ‘N Gro Potting Soil Conclusion

Miracle-Gro Expand ‘N Gro Potting Soil has some good qualities that customers liked.  It is lightweight.  A lot of people appreciated not having to lug around a heavy bag.  People that lived in high rise apartments with balcony gardens, liked that they didn’t have carry it upstairs.  Also, there were a lot of comments from elderly people who bought this specifically because of the lightness of it.  A downside is that mold has been reported by a lot of customers.  Also, be aware that there is no  vermiculite in it.  You may want to purchase a separate bag of  vermiculite so that the soil does not compact.

Common Questions

Here are some top questions that I found for people considering buying the Miracle-Gro Expand ‘N Gro Potting Soil.

  • chevron-circle-right What is the purpose of expanding the soil?   The purpose of the soil expanding is that you get the same amount of soil as you would when buying a bulky bag.  Instead of buying a big bag, you can buy a lightweight bag and still get the same amount.
  • chevron-circle-right Is this soil good for succulent plants? It probably retains too much moisture for a lot of succulents. They prefer something sandy/rocky with excellent drainage and not a lot of moisture retention.
  • chevron-circle-right Does this work for cabbages?  Yes, it should work for any vegetables.

Related Article: Best Potting Soil: Our Top 10 Picks and Overall Favorite

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