1. Beginning with carefully selected ingredients and formulated by a team of professional horticulturists, the Sunshine Advanced Growing Mix #4 is made from high quality raw materials and provides an ideal growing mix for your indoor and outdoor growing needs.

    The foundation of the growing mix is Canadian Sphagnum peat moss, sustainably harvested from carefully managed bogs in rural Canada. The peat moss is screened to remove large clumps and sticks and is blended with horticultural grade perlite and coir (a by-product of the coconut industry). Peat moss reduces the leaching of nutrients from the growing mix allowing them to release slowly over time. Perlite keeps air spaces open while coir combined with peat allows good water retention. This provides a balance of air and water that results in good root growth and the foundation for good stem and flower growth. Dolomitic lime, a starter organic fertilizer, mycorrhizae and an organic wetting agent are added to complete the mix. Lime adjusts the pH for optimum fertilizer availability; the starter organic fertilizer helps transplants establish; mycorrhizae assists in fertilizer uptake and the organic wetting agent helps peat moss absorb water better.The mix is created using state of the art production equipment. Peat is moved into the production plant using large front end loaders. Perlite ore is ‘popped’ at 1600o F (870o C) at many of our sites and compressed coir is expanded or ‘fluffed’ by adding water on site.

    All of the raw materials are placed into dosing hoppers and, via computer control, are dispensed onto a conveyor belt per the specified formulation. The conveyor belt loads the mix into an angled blending drum and then out to another conveyor belt which moves the finished product to the packaging area. Using automatic packaging equipment, the mix is loaded into bags and compressed at an approximate 2:1 ratio. The bags are then placed on a pallet and stretch wrapped. Compressed mixes are popular since they are an efficient use of volume while still retaining all the beneficial attributes of the growing mix. Sunshine Advanced Mix #4 is available in 1 cf, 2.2 cf and 3.0 cf packages.

    Quality control is an important part of what allows growers to achieve success with Sunshine Advanced Growing Mix #4. We check each raw material prior to use and we also check the finished growing mix. The science of growing good plants requires that the plants are grown in a mix that has the correct pH, EC as well as good air and water capacities.

    Once Sunshine Advanced Growing Mix #4 is packaged, it is shipped to a store near you. Sun Gro takes pride in the entire development process of our products, and this ensures that our mixes will work well for you. In fact, if you purchase Sunshine Advanced and you are not completely satisfied, we will refund your money.

    Sustainability is considered during all phases of the production process to ensure raw materials are used wisely and will remain available for future generations. For more information on Sun Gro’s commitment to sustainably, go to www.sungro.com.

    Content Disclaimer:

    This site may contain content (including images and articles) as well as advice, opinions and statements presented by third parties. Sun Gro does not review these materials for accuracy or reliability and does not endorse the advice, opinions, or statements that may be contained in them. Sun Gro also does not review the materials to determine if they infringe the copyright or other rights of others. These materials are available only for informational purposes and are presented “as is” without warranty of any kind, express or implied, including without limitation warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, and non-infringement. Reliance upon any such opinion, advice, statement or other information is at your own risk. In no event shall Sun Gro Horticulture Distribution, Inc. or any of its affiliates be liable to you for any inaccuracy, error, omission, fact, infringement and the like, resulting from your use of these materials, regardless of cause, or for any damages resulting there from.


    1. Gary

      Will this grow media suffice for venus fly traps and most carnivorous plants? Considering it has agents to help fertilize the plant growth..

    2. Sunshine Advanced

      Hi Gary,

      Thanks for the question about the carnivorous plants! Sunshine Advanced does have an organic fertilizer charge that will provide nutrients to plants. It releases nutrients slowly though, so there’s no danger in burning plants from too much fertilizer.

      Hope this helps and good luck with the venus fly traps!

    3. Carie

      When you feed a plant in sunshine advanced #4 do you adjust the PH like it is hydro, ie:5.6-5.8?
      Or is it ok in the 6.4 range?
      Thank you very much!! Love this mix!!!

    4. chad


      I’m having an issue with calcium and possibly magnesium when adjusting ph to 5.9 -6.1. The runoff has been 5.3-5.5 which I believe is licking out calcium which I have to correct ph almost on a daily basis. I plan to add dolomite line to the mix to fix this for future use however I have been foliar feeding but its not working out. Would you suggest hydrated lime for a faster responce or what’s is the best way to adjust the ph up a little bit.

    5. Johngro

      So what’s the NPk value? I want to mix this with other nutrients, but don’t want to burn. Plz help.

    6. sungrohorticulture

      Hi Chad,

      Thanks for the great question!

      We don’t recommend hydrated lime to correct pH concerns. It is too reactive! Try flowable lime such as Limestone F as a soil media drench. It is available at most greenhouse supply companies.

      Let us know how it works out. Thanks!

    7. sungrohorticulture

      Hi John,

      Thanks for your question! Click here to download a Word Doc with more specific technical info and some FAQs about our products.

      Thank you!

    8. sungrohorticulture

      Hi Abigail,

      Thank you for the great question! Depending on the species of bonsai plant being grown, Sunshine Advanced #4 might be a good fit. Remember that this is a coarser mix, meaning it drains and dries out faster, so closer monitoring of watering is needed. Other products that we recommend for seed germination are Sunshine Seed Starter Mix or Black Gold Seedling Mix.

      to view the product label for Sunshine Seed Starter with some good hints on seed germination. There are also a few websites totally dedicated to growing Bonsai plants.

    9. brad

      I am a coco grower and am considering switching to Sunshine #4. I want to use a top feed drain to waste program with daily watering. Would you recommend mixing Sunshine #4 with perlite, coco or expanded clay for more aeration? Will Sunshine #4 be fine for this style of system? I’m concerned about salt build up, PH fluctuations, and over wathering.

    10. sungrohorticulture

      Hello Brad,

      That’s a good question. We would recommend that you add perlite, if you want to add anything to your mix, for better drainage. Perlite has no salts in it, whereas coir or coco would add salts. If you are reusing your waste water, be sure to check the E.C. It is also recommended by some professionals to only use 10% (25% at the most) of the waste water in ratio to fresh water and nutrients. Over watering is something you need to avoid, saturate the pots of mix until the water runs out, and then don’t water again until the top 2” of mix is slightly moist/almost dry to the touch.

      Cheers and Happy Growing!

    11. sungrohorticulture

      Hi Brandon,

      We do not recommend reusing potting mixes in indoor growing situations, there could be bacteria or disease that was introduced to a planting from an outside source which may affect a new planting. Additionally, the physical structure of the mix changes during plant growth. The best way to reuse your potting mix would be to add to a compost pile and use in an outdoor garden.

      We recently posted some more information and FAQs regarding Sunshine Advanced mixes that you may find useful as well.

      Cheers and Happy Growing!

    12. Sunshine Advanced

      Yes, you can use SSA #4 for growing kumquats in pots. Just be sure to grow a dwarf variety, and don’t let your tree become pot bound. Purdue University has a very informative outline on growing kumquats that’s worth reading. Happy growing!

    13. David Moore

      Hi there,

      I am currently having issues with my runoff water being 6.3-6.8 when I adjust my nutrients before application to 5.8. They are showing signs of what I believe is calcium or magnesium deficiency. Any thoughts on how to correct the ph runoff?

    14. Sunshine Advanced

      Hi David, Thanks for your question. You want to lower the pH so that calcium and magnesium are made more available. The easiest way to do this is to use a pH lowering product such as General Hydroponics® pH Down. As they say on their label: “Use sparingly and test until you get the pH you are desiring.” We hope this helps!

    15. Ro Wraigh

      Hi Sunshine, I love your product but I don’t use it for the organic starts because I’m not sure of the wetting agent. I know that when it comes to chemistry and inputs the word organic is not regulated by the USDA, so it can be confusing. All help welcome.

    16. Sunshine Advanced

      The wetting agent in our Sunshine Advanced #4 Mix is an organic wetting agent, derived from Yucca. All of our Sunshine Advanced mixes are OMRI Listed, which means all their ingredients have been checked and approved to be labeled as ‘organic.’ To learn more about the OMRI program visit http://www.omri.org. We hope this answers your question!

      P.S. California has their own organic registry and sometimes does not list OMRI, as all other states do. Either way, you can be assured that OMRI means you are getting an all organic product.

    17. Eva B

      This is the first time we have used your product. Upon opening the first compacted bale we noticed a fuzz or mold on the outer corner of the mix.

      Is this common or safe?

    18. Sunshine Advanced

      Hi Eva,

      This is a very common situation with any mix that has organic matter, especially if the mix has gotten wet. There is bound to be a little natural mold in packaging before it is used. Most people don’t have a problem with it because it does not hurt the plants while others who have not seen it before may be apprehensive about it. The easiest thing to do is to open the package and let the mix dry out, if it is wet, and then use it.

      Happy Growing!

    19. Sunshine Advanced

      Hi Rob,

      Our mixes/components are not sterilized. Sterilizing may kill the bad microorganisms and “bugs” but it also destroys the good microbes. Any mix that is damp and not allowed to dry out is susceptible to fungus gnats. (They can come in and invade from anywhere.) The key is to let plants dry out in between watering. Good air circulation is also essential.

      Happy growing!


    20. Dusty

      I’m using SS#4, I’m using RO water that is at a PH of 7.1 and after adding floranova nutrients as well as the additives my PH is at 5.4 I don’t adjust the PH level because the run off after feeding is at 5.8-5.9, My question is should I PH to 5.9-6.0 and not even test the run off or do the set the ph so the run off is at 5.8-6.0? Thank you

    21. Sunshine Advanced

      Hi Dusty,

      If you are coming up with a good medium pH range between 5.5 and 6.5, there is no need to check pH at runoff.

      Happy growing!