Premium or organic?

When it comes to gardening, there are three main groups of people:

  1. those who don't have any particular preferences and will use man-made fertilisers, pest controls and herbicides
  2. those who hold strong views about gardening completely naturally (organically) without using man-made fertilisers or other chemicals
  3. those who are happy with a mix of both

And so it is with potting mixes - broadly, there are three types based on what's in them:

  1. Regular, premium and superior mixes that contain slow or controlled release fertilisers, wetting agents, etc (Scotts Osmocote Professional, Debco)
  2. Certified 100% organic mixes that do not contain any added chemicals or artificial ingredients (Scotts Pure Organic)
  3. The best of both worlds - premium or superior mixes boosted with organic ingredients (Scotts Osmocote + Organics)

light-bulb-icon@2x.png What makes them different?

Superior and premium potting pixes


Made from composted pine bark to which slow or controlled release fertilisers, wetting agent, water-storing crystals and other ingredients may have been added. These additives may be man-made or chemical in origin.

Our superior and premium Scotts Osmocote Professional mixes comply with or exceed the Australian Standard's FIVE RED TICKS requirements.

Learn more about how our potting mixes are made.

Certified or registered 100% organic mixes


Certified by Australian Certified Organic as completely natural (animal, vegetable or mineral) in origin, with no man-made fertilisers or additives. It's made from composted pine bark, like premium mixes, but without the base fertiliser in the composting process.

Organic materials may be processed but each of the added ingredients must have its own organic certification, traceable to the origin of the resource.

Non-organic 'allowed inputs' may be added - for example, iron - but this must be declared on the label. Sewage treatment plant solid waste ('sludge') is NOT used in Scotts organics.

Natural fertilisers in our organic mixes include:

  • fish meal
  • feather meal
  • seaweed
  • chicken manure
  • blood & bone

Scotts Pure Organic Premium Potting & Planting Mix is an Australian Organic Registered Product and also carries the FIVE RED TICKS logo.

Plus Organics


Made from a premium potting mix base that contains controlled release fertiliser and wetting agent, these mixes also include a range of organic ingredients. Added composted chicken manure, blood & bone, seaweed, fish meal and molasses will stimulate beneficial soil-borne microbes.

These 2 in 1 potting mixes cannot be certified as organic because they contain fertilisers and other materials that are man-made.

Our Scotts Osmocote Plus Organics mixes, which carry the Australian Standard's FIVE RED TICKS, really are the best of both worlds!

light-bulb-icon@2x.png So which is best?

It's a personal or lifestyle decision

There is no right or wrong, good or bad when it comes to making a decision about the type of potting mix for you and the way you like to garden.

It's a completely personal decision which may be influenced by your lifestyle or philosophical choices. Sometimes it may be a choice that results from a medical condition that affects you or someone you share your life with.

  • People who prefer to buy, use, eat and grow only 100% natural products will choose a 'Certified Organic' growing medium.
  • Others may like the benefits of organic fertilisers but also want the long-term feeding and trace elements that come with a controlled release fertiliser (Scotts Osmocote + Organics).
  • Those who have no particular preference will usually choose a premium or superior mix that contains a long-term controlled release fertiliser, wetting agent and water-storing crystals - because it's the complete, 'set and forget' package for time-poor or inexperienced gardeners.

Premium and superior mixes are also available in a wider range of plant-specific varieties than other potting mixes. You can choose one that has been formulated to suit the plants you're growing - for example Scotts Osmocote Professional Fruit & Citrus Potting Mix for your dwarf 'Lots of Lemons' or Bulb Mix for your potted hyacinths.

Whatever your decision, make sure you buy quality potting mixes - always look for the Australian Standard logo and other certifications.

Tips, tricks & advice

The right mix

All Purpose or a specialised blend? There's a potting for just about every type of plant and it's important to make the right choices!

Read more

Repotting keeps plants healthy

Potted plants have a relatively small amount of potting mix around their roots and it may be quickly depleted

Read more

Other products you might need

Scotts Osmocote® Plus Organics Premium Potting & Planting Mix


A premium potting and planting mix that nurtures plant growth and health above and below the soil, it contains a blend of composted organic materials enriched with Scotts Osmocote® plant food

Scotts Everydrop Premium Water Storing Crystals


Scotts Everydrop crystals absorb and hold up to 100 times their own weight of water. Unlike other crystals, Scotts Everydrop is acrylamide-free and completely safe

Scotts Osmocote® Professional Premium Plus Potting Mix


The top of the range potting mix for all types of plants and conditions that helps you save water while ensuring strong healthy growth

Scotts Pure Organic Premium Potting & Planting Mix


A premium certified organic mix that is perfect for your pots, planters, hanging baskets and raised gardens. Outstanding results with no fuss while taking care of the environment.

Scotts Everydrop Premium Granular Soil Wetter


Scotts Everydrop granules are designed to maximise every drop of water, consistently and evenly. Safe to use in every garden situation - on pots, lawns and garden beds.

Scotts Osmocote® Professional - Premium Potting Mix


A quality general purpose mix for all types of plants with a wetting agent to help your pots absorb water and plants take up nutrients