[NAFEX] Soilless Mix

Lucky Pittman lucky.pittman at murraystate.edu
Tue Apr 18 08:57:55 EDT 2006

At 07:36 AM 4/18/2006, Tom wrote:
>I have been looking at the ratios for soilless mix and I have a question.
>Why are the ratios limited to "pine" bark?  I have a pile of old maple
>chippings that are closer to compost than wood, and I wonder if any OLD
>wood chips would work in a soilless mix?

The pine bark is relatively inert, and very slow to break down, but 
even pine bark 'fines' help a lot with improving 'structure' of the 
medium - they're irregular in shape, allowing for more 'spaces' for 
roots to penetrate into, and promoting good drainage.
Your composted wood chips could probably be substituted for the peat 
component. When I make my own potting mix, I typically substitute 2-3 
yr. old composted leaves for peat, which is a non-renewable(or, at 
least, very slowly renewable) resource.


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