Perlite is a heat expanded, man made product for use as a hydroponic growing medium. Perlite retains enough moisture for it to be suitable as a hand watered medium, but also has sufficient drainage to be used in a recycling drip irrigation system. Perlite is extremely lightweight and is suitable for use in a variety of growing containers pots, trays, bottom fed auto watering systems, etc.



The fastest growing application for Perlite in the horticultural field is hydroponics or otherwise known as Protected Cropping. Perlite exhibits a unique capillary action in that nutrient rich water can be drawn up from a reservoir through a fine Perlite growing media at the rate that is required by a plant. As a result, plants grown in hydroponic supplies, i.e. Perlite do not suffer from over watering or under watering.

Perlite is a natural occurring mineral in the form of siliceous rock, Perlite ore is found world wide with the best mines located in North America, Greece, Turkey, China and Northern Australia. When the perlite ore is heated at approximately 850⁰-900⁰C it expands up to 20 times its original volume, unlike many other volcanic glasses, making it perfect for use as perlite insulation. This expansion is caused by water that has been trapped within the ore (approximately 4% water content is trapped within the perlite ore) and the water is boiled off when evaporation occurs causing the ore to expand to its particular size. This process is much likened to the making of popcorn in your microwave (yet at a much higher temperature). In the expansion phase, the perlite ore changes from dark shades of black and grey to fluorescent, pearly white shades.


Why Exfoliators Perlite is the best

Particle Size Distribution

Exfoliators produce a very tight particle size distribution product, low in fines and low oversized product:

  • This ensures growers see exacting results and have much more control when propagating.
  • Fines will increase water retention as opposed to opening the mix.

Other sources are often quite broad and vary in their particle size distribution:

  • Which results in the opposite to what I have mentioned above

Capillary Action

Exfoliators perlite will have a faster capillary action than alternatives, it will move water and nutrients faster:

  • Poorly produced perlites will be much slower to move water and nutrient through a mix.

Due to the capillary action, perlite is near impossible to become hydrophobic like other product:

  • Perlite is much more forgiving than other medias due to this fact alone.
  • Growools and Cocopeats can be notoriously difficult to re-wet once they dry out.
  • In the case of coco mixes, including perlite helps to prevent this issue.

Particle Structure

  • Perlite sources vary in particle integrity, some are soft, some are harder.
  • Exfoliators perlite source is perfect horticulturally, holding its particle structure for longer.
  • Other sources may be softer and break down quicker under mechanical force (mixing). When perlite breaks down like this, you lose porosity and volume.


  • With lower qaulity products contaminate such as stone, which naturally comes through with the ore often ends up in the bag.
  • Exfoliators remove any stone or under expanded ore as it is un-useable.
  • Exfoliators Perlite purity tends to be much higher than global standards.

Exfoliators Perlite is certified to Australian Organic Standards and also ISO9001, ISO14001, ASNZ4801.