Sand for potting mixes

Tim Eck
Sat, 15 Nov 2014 16:26:01 PST
I think any sand from a fresh-water stream will be silica or silicate.  The aragonite is from seashells crushed by tides.

-----Original Message-----
From: pbs [] On Behalf Of penstemon
Sent: Saturday, November 15, 2014 5:08 PM
To: Pacific Bulb Society
Subject: Re: [pbs] Sand for potting mixes

>I have heard for years that one needs to use “silica sand” for bulb 
>potting mixes. I wonder how “silica sand” differs from other sand. I 
>try to find very coarse sand because it is not as likely to compact. 
>The best stuff I found was from a stream bed. But was it “silica sand?” 
>Isn’t sand generally a silicate mineral anyway?

I would have said yes, but a quick check of the apparently-omniscient Wikipedia says that silica sand is the most common form of sand, followed by sand from calcium carbonate (aragonite).
The sand I use is the stuff called "paving sand"; comes in bags. The grains aren't uniform in size.


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