potting media/dry stall - mixing it?2

Shoal Creek Succulents group@shoalcreeksucculents.com
Wed, 14 Aug 2013 04:34:25 PDT
Hi John-Where is your blog?

Best regards, Lisa

-----Original Message-----
From: pbs-bounces@lists.ibiblio.org [mailto:pbs-bounces@lists.ibiblio.org]
On Behalf Of John Willis
Sent: Tuesday, August 13, 2013 9:14 PM
To: Pacific Bulb Society
Subject: Re: [pbs] potting media/dry stall - mixing it?2

Hi there, for what it's worth I just finished mixing up 40 cubic feet of
assorted good things for my new alpine bed using a cement mixer that I
bought from Lowes.  I looked at various options including used items on
craig's list but in the end I wanted something that was likely to work for
many loads.  Even this is a lot of manual labor but it beats trying to mix
the ingredients in a wheelbarrow.  I used chicken grit for the gravel in two
sizes (starter and developer) from the local farmer's coop, topsoil bought
in bulk and dumped in the pasture, miracle gro potting mix, and a good
general purpose sand bought by the bag from a local nursery.  The details
are on my blog.


On Aug 9, 2013, at 5:48 PM, Ceridwen Lloyd <ceridwen@internode.on.net>
wrote:

> Hi all,
> Forgive me if this has already been discussed (I haven't yet had time 
> to read all messages in this thread) - what do you use as a soil 
> mixer? (The commercial nursery ones look excellent but I suspect my 
> husband would protest.) Shovelling into a wheelbarrow is ok but slow 
> and hard on my weedy old shoulders.  An ODJOB or sealed bucket type 
> looks too heavy to lift if it were of any useful size, so I was 
> wondering whether a conventional cement mixer would do the trick? I am 
> leaning more and more toward mixing my own after finding all kinds of 
> crud in commercial mix (half inch chunks of laminated particle board, 
> various plastics, etc) which also grows an evil-smelling mould on top 
> of it when in a lidded container, which I'm in no mood to 
> inhale...another thread no doubt) Cheers Ceridwen (Just potted up 
> Alophia lahue from FIRST EVER seed received, yay)
> 
> Sent from my iPhone
> 
> On 09/08/2013, at 9:57 PM, "Shoal Creek Succulents"
<group@shoalcreeksucculents.com> wrote:
> 
>> Thanks to everyone for responses and this new chain.
>> 
>> I use a similar mix; although - Monica- yours is much more involved.  
>> If it wouldn't be too much trouble - would you mind notating each 
>> component's purpose?
>> 
>> I believe pumice & turface are added for moisture, aeration, CEC and 
>> to reduce soil compaction; so why add the sand?
>> 
>> How big is your mixer, 5 gallon, 10 gallon?  And would you share how 
>> much of each item on your minor mix?
>> 
>> For top dressing my plants, I found crushed granite at our local Farm 
>> & Fleet store for $4.49 for a 50 pound bag.
>> 
>> As soon as I can locate all of the items in bulk at a low cost; I 
>> will start making my own mix.  I am still using an organic mix and 
>> adding to it.  Same as you; I vary the components based on the 
>> individual needs of the plant to be potted.
>> 
>> Thanks again - very thought provoking.  Until now; I never realized 
>> how expensive my commercially bought mix was - compared to making a 
>> better mix myself at a lower cost.
>> 
>> Best regards, Lisa
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: pbs-bounces@lists.ibiblio.org 
>> [mailto:pbs-bounces@lists.ibiblio.org]
>> On Behalf Of Monica Swartz
>> Sent: Monday, August 05, 2013 5:30 PM
>> To: pbs@lists.ibiblio.org
>> Subject: Re: [pbs] potting media
>> 
>> I use DryStall as my pumice source. It is cheaper and easier than 
>> importing a truckload of Pumice to Texas. I am often asked about my 
>> potting ingredients. For potting most plants, my basic mix is:
>> 1 part pumice (DryStall),
>> 1 part sand,
>> 1 part Turface MVP (I love this stuff, I also root cuttings in pure 
>> Turface),
>> 1 part Diatomite (Napa Floor Dry 8822, but other Auto parts chains 
>> have their own brands of the same thing),
>> 1 part organic (usually a locally produced cactus mix).
>> This all goes into a cheap electric cement mixer along with a scoop 
>> of a mix of my minor ingredients which include Azomite, humic acid, 
>> bone meal, blood meal, cottonseed meal, 9 month osmocote, systemic 
>> fungicide, granular imidacloprid, inoculums, etc.
>> It takes less than 5 minutes to make a big batch that is stored in 
>> big plastic boxes with lids. When potting I add ingredients to this 
>> base to tailor the mix for the needs of each plant. I use big metal 
>> bowls from a restaurant supply. It's like cooking, a pinch of this 
>> and that as I go. The objective of this potting "personalization" is 
>> to have a healthy collection of plants that can all be watered at the 
>> same time no matter where they are from. It takes no special 
>> knowledge about the plants to water them, my house-sitter can do it, 
>> or even my husband. If a plant is in no-water dormancy, it is moved 
>> into the garage, out of range of the hose. This system has created a 
>> surprising amount of freedom to take long worry-free vacations, and 
>> the plants are very happy and embarrassingly fecund. The PBS BX/SX is one
beneficiary.
>> m
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