Friday, October 17, 2008

It's dirty work.

I was potting up some things yesterday and realized that I was out of my premixed container mix, so I thought I'd post some pictures of how I hand mix it.

You'll be shocked by the complexity, I'm sure...

The base to my mixes is peat. (I know, I know, not very environmentally friendly, but I haven't found a suitable alternative for an indoor, container mix yet. That's been in the works and I've been researching and testing for about a year, now.)

I mix 8 parts peat to 1 part bark and mix thoroughly. I usually make a lot of this up, because this 'base' doesn't usually change, regardless of what's going to be growing in it. I store this is big trashcans and pull it out as I need it. I just did a big mix, so I didn't need that today.

Then, for my general purpose container mix, I mix 4 parts 'base' with 1 part perlite. Perlite is a fluffy, volcanic glass and is excellent for opening up mixes and improving drainage.

Now, here comes the complicated part. Listen closely...


My most used recipes:

Standard potting mix: 8 pt peat: 1 pt bark. 4 pt base: 1 pt perlite

Succulent mix: 8 pt peat: 1 pt pebbles or bark. 4 pt base: 1 pt perlite: 1 pt sand

A note to anyone who's mixing peat, sand, or perlite: Please wear a mask! Your lungs will thank you.

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