Im New to, growing mixes

M. Gastil-Buhl
Sun, 31 Mar 2013 11:45:43 PDT
Welcome Luis,

First, I commend you for starting your planning in March for growing  
next Fall. I wish I had such foresight when I began.
Having everything in pots can be an advantage. Many on this list grow  
primarily in pots.
It looks like you have done some research already, as you knew to tell  
us where you live (coastal California), and you recognize the type of  
bulb grown (winter growing) affects choice of potting mix. (The book  
'Grow Bulbs' by G. Duncan says winter growing bulbs have lower  
nutrient needs.)

I am experimenting with several recipes for potting mix but it is too  
soon to know which works best.
I got started by reading this page:…

As Kathleen mentioned, searching the archives can dig up a lot of  
The equivalent to typing "potting mix" in the search box is this  
google search:
	"potting mix" site:///
which finds 604 results!
You see PBS members do write often on this important topic.

Jane is an expert and I take notes whenever she writes.
But given my limited skills I cannot grow a Lily in the same potting  
mix as a Lachenalia.
(The Lily needs more nutrients and water whereas the Lachenalia would  
rot in a mix that takes half the summer to dry out.)
It may be a matter of scale. My garden is small and I spend a lot of  
time with each plant.
If I were a real "grower" on a large scale it would be too complicated  
to adjust soil, type of pot, feeding and watering to each species.
The general advice I read is "you can easily add water but it is  
difficult to remove water." (I forgot the source.)
That is one of the ideas of a rapid-draining, porous potting mix.
Today it is raining, so everything gets watered, whether or not the  
leaves have begun to turn brown (a signal to cease irrigation).
The plan is for the bulbs which need a dry dormancy to be in a soil  
that drains and dries.

Thanks for the Lachenalia sand tip Dell. I'll try that, as soon as I  
get replacements for my lovely Lachenalia that rotted because I had  
not realized how a mix with too much coir takes months to dry out here.

- Gastil
Coastal California

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