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Where Can I Buy Potting Soil? 7 Options

a person scooping potting soil with trowel

Potting soil is an essential part of any indoor garden. It helps provide the nutrients that your plants need and usually contains additives that help the soil retain moisture longer. However, many people aren’t sure where to buy it, so keep reading as we list several places where you can purchase it, along with the pros and cons of each option to help you make an informed decision.

garden flower divider

The 7 Places to Buy Potting Soil

1. Walmart

Photo Credit By: Gabriel Phphy, Shutterstock

For many people, Walmart is one of the best options for purchasing potting because they frequently visit the store to buy groceries and other supplies. There are many locations across the United States, the prices are usually fair, and several topsoil brands are available, so you will likely find what you need. Another big advantage to Walmart is that it often opens early and doesn’t close until quite late, so you can get your potting soil anytime you need it.

The downside of using Walmart is that you usually can’t find any help. If you have a question about what kind of soil you need, you must rely on reading the packaging. Many stores may also run out of stock and consider it a seasonal product, making it harder to find at certain times of the year.

  • Many locations
  • Open extended hours
  • Fair prices
  • Good selection
  • Might run out of stock
  • Little or no gardening help

2. Target

Target is a popular store that you can find in all 50 states, with almost 2,000 locations. Like Walmart, it’s a popular place to visit for many reasons besides gardening, but you can find a nice selection of topsoil there. It’s especially good in a pinch, with many of the most common brands available in small packages.

The downside of visiting Target for topsoil is that there is less variety available during the off-season, and the bags are usually smaller and more expensive, with less chance of a sale price, so it isn’t a good choice if you need a large amount of soil. You are also less likely to find gardening help at a Target location.

  • Many locations
  • Good selection
  • Expensive
  • Seasonal
  • Small packages
  • Limited gardening help

3. Lowe’s

Bone Meal Soil
Photo Credit By: Joe Kuis, Shutterstock

Lowe’s is a great choice for any gardener who uses a large amount of dirt. There are many locations, it often has a large selection of brands to choose from, and you can easily get large bags to tackle any size job. Buying in bulk often results in discounts too, and soil is kept stocked all year. At certain times, you can even find knowledgeable sales staff who can help you with a gardening problem.

The main downside of using Lowe’s for gardening soil is that it can be difficult to sort through the large selection if you are a beginner and there are no sales associates available.

  • Several locations
  • Large selection
  • Bulk discounts
  • Can be challenging to navigate for beginners

4. Home Depot

Home Depot is similar to Lowe’s and offers the gardener many of the same advantages. It has many brands available, so you can get any soil that you need, and it usually keeps the shelf stocked all year long. You can get as much dirt as you need, and it often offers bulk discounts. Many of the sales associates can also provide helpful advice, especially when you visit during the busy spring season.

The downside of Home Depot is that it can be intimidating for a beginner to sort through all the merchandise and select a brand of topsoil, especially if there are no sales representatives available.

  • Many locations
  • Large selection
  • Bulk discounts
  • Can be intimidating to navigate for beginners

5. Amazon

Bone Meal Soil
Photo Credit By: Floki, Shutterstock

A great option for many people is to use Amazon to purchase potting soil. Orders come directly to your door in just a few days, and the selection is unmatched. While you can’t get immediate help, you can usually post a question on the product page and get an answer in a few days. In many cases, though, you can find the answers that you need by reading over the questions or looking through the reviews, making it much easier to find a good brand.

The downside of using an online service like Amazon is that some sellers might cut corners to make sales, and some bags of potting soil might arrive damaged or dried out.

  • Huge selection
  • Ships to your door
  • Helpful reviews and questions
  • Deceitful sellers
  • Damaged packaging
  • Dry soil

6. Local Garden Center

Your local garden center is one of the best places to get potting soil. It typically has a solution to every gardening problem, and the knowledgeable staff can help you find the answers that you need for the best chance of success in your gardening endeavors.

The downside of this option is that many people don’t have a garden center nearby, and the available products can often be expensive. Another downside is that the sales associates can upsell you into purchasing more than just potting soil.

  • Likely has the soil that you need
  • Knowledgeable staff can help answer questions
  • Not many locations
  • Expensive

7. DIY

two people with gloves getting soil compost
Photo Credit By: Gustavo Fring, Pexels

If you are looking for high-quality, low-cost potting soil, one of the best options is to make it yourself with a compost pile. A compost pile is easy to create and maintain. It’s good for the environment and helps you turn food scraps into usable soil that will provide plenty of nutrients for your indoor or outdoor garden.

The downside of compost is that it can take a year or two before it starts to produce usable soil, and it requires continuous maintenance.

  • Low cost
  • Good for the environment
  • Helps you recycle table scraps
  • Takes a while to produce usable soil
  • Requires frequent maintenance

divider 1 Frequently Asked Questions

What kind of potting soil should I use?

The type of potting soil that you need depends primarily on the plants that you’re growing. Some prefer sandy soil, while others prefer loamy dirt or a different kind, so it’s best to research the plants that you are growing. Learn what potting soil they would grow best in, and find a brand that matches it. Most brands have plenty of options for any gardening requirements.

hand in glove using steel trowel to dig into bare soil garden
Image Credit: stockcreations, Shutterstock

How do I know if I have good potting soil?
  • A good general-purpose potting soil will be fluffy to the touch, as this provides aeration that promotes root growth.
  • A good potting soil will have a consistent blend of ingredients.
  • High-quality potting soil won’t have any large pieces of wood, plastic, or glass.
  • High-quality potting soil will often contain ingredients that absorb the moisture when you water the plant and release it when the soil becomes dry, helping your plants withstand drought conditions and high temperatures.
  • Your potting soil should not become muddy or soggy when you water the plant. Instead, it should become damp, with excess water quickly draining through the drainage holes at the bottom of the pot. This prevents root rot, fungus, and disease.

garden flower divider Conclusion

Potting soil is not difficult to find, and you can purchase it at several locations. If you have access to the internet, Amazon or a similar online service is likely your best option because you can search from home to find the best price and type and have it shipped directly to your door. You also find the answers to many of your questions online, but if you need more specific help, a garden center is your best bet. Walmart is a great choice because it’s convenient and open nearly around the clock, while a home improvement center like Lowe’s or Home Depot is perfect when you need a large amount of dirt.

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Featured Image Credit: Teona Swift, Pexels


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