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Vermiculite is a mineral, phyllosilicate of magnesium, trivalent iron and aluminum, with hydroxyls and water; it occurs in small flakes or folding lamellar crystals with a pseudo-hexagonal outline. It is a mineral of considerable industrial importance; subjected to partial firing, it gives a very light product, used alone or mixed with cementitious substances in building, as a thermal and acoustic insulator. It is also used in the plastics, colors, paper and agricultural industries.
In particular, in the cultivation of succulents it is a component which, having a good capacity to retain water, helps to reduce the frequency of wetting; in sowing, a superficial layer of vermiculite contributes to the maintenance of the right humidity of the substrate favoring the germination of the seeds. Furthermore, its low specific weight gives lightness to the substrate.
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