email: cavebear2118 AT verizon DOT com

Friday, January 12, 2018

Starter Soil

I mix my own.  I use up a large trash barrel each year.  It works great for me!

Start with a sifter.  I made one 2'x2' of 2"x4" boards covered on the bottom with 1/4" hardware cloth (wire mesh). 

My formula is:
4 parts finished compost
2 parts peat moss
1 part vermiculite
1/2 part perlite

I have a large plastic bin that fits under the sifter.  I add scoops of each item into the sifter and rub it around (wearing heavy leather gloves).  When it is mostly gone and just unsiftable lumps left, I add the sifted material to the trash barrel and the unsifted material to a small bucket

After a 2nd load into the barrel, I stir it all around

Repeat, repeat, repeat...

When I'm done, I have a whole barrel of sifted starter soil and 1 bucket of peat clumps.  I pound that as best I can with a 4"x4"x4' post and toss it into the compost bin.

I re-use planting 6-pack cels, but I soak them in a mild bleach solution in the basement laundry tub and rinse them 3 times.  I have great germination, so no problem there. 

I also cut one one cell out of a 11"x22" flat for ease of watering.  There is always SOME plant I can get by with having 5 of, LOL!

So, this week's project is making more starter soil.

1 comment:

Megan said...

It's little wonder that you have such success with your plants, Mark - you do all the right things! Inspirational stuff. Thanks for sharing.

Megan
Sydney, Australia