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One of the many advantages of LECA, though it takes energy to mass produce and sell, is that it's a reusable medium. If your LECA's previous inhabitant was a healthy, disease- and pest-free plant, it needs nothing more than a good rinse to properly prepare it for re-use.

If the LECA is moldy, or had a root-rotted or pest-infested plant potted in it, there are some additional steps you might want to take before re-using the medium. Different methods of sterilizing LECA include:

- Sun Sterilization

- Hydrogren Peroxide

- Bleach

- Boiling

- and my current favorite for small amounts, the microwave. Click here to see how.

The perfect LECA set-up is an ongoing debate. One pot vs. two (glass vase or jar vs net pot in a separate reservoir). However, I feel the answer is up to personal preference and like anything with plants, varies greatly depending on the type of plant at issue. Here are a few guidelines to help you decide:

One Pot....
Water-rooted plant in one pot

Standalone Pot/Glass Vase


• Aesthetically pleasing

• Cost

• No need to cut/destroy inner pot when repotting


* More difficult to flush


..or two?
Adansonii in a two pot set-up

Inner Net Pot/Nursery Pot with Separate Cache Pot for Reservoir


• Quicker and more simple flushing


• Having to cut roots out of the inner pot when repotting

• More pieces to purchase

Personally, I use both methods. If you can't resist the aesthetics of a glass jar, do yourself a favor and wait until your plant is established in LECA before moving it to its glass house. Otherwise, you would have to factor in the difficulty of flushing, during the transition process.

What's that white stuff?

Seeing white stuff on the top of your LECA? So long as you rule out mold, don’t worry. It’s a reaction called efflorescence. Water evaporates, but the minerals in it do not. This leftover mineral deposit is what accumulates on your LECA. Think of the white build up that you commonly see on retaining walls and driveways. It’s the remnants of water that have been left behind over the years.

You can get rid of efflorescence easily by flushing the LECA. Using distilled or RO water in your nutrient solution will slow the buildup.

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