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Discuss water requirements, "soil" (growing media) and suitable planting containers

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By dmagnan
Posts:  603
Joined:  Sun Apr 18, 2010 6:37 pm
#109818
Well according to wikipedia, loam is high in nutrients, so it probably won't work. Flytraps need nutrient poor soil. The way to actually test it is to use a TDS meter in saturated soil. The TDS for flytraps should be less than a hundred at least, and ideally less than 50. While there is some discussion about what pH's flytraps can handle, you're probably better off making sure the pH is acidic as well. Peat moss is between 3 and 4. People have tried other medias and I haven't read any success stories yet, except for Steve and his coir.
By l0v3lyink
Posts:  3
Joined:  Wed Jun 29, 2011 4:22 am
#109833
Alright well that gives me something to look at if I really want to use that soil and also something to experiment with once i start getting better. Much obliged Dave.
By akshat
Posts:  9
Joined:  Fri Nov 18, 2011 10:57 am
#126788
I still have few queries about the soil :-
dmagnan wrote: 1. What is peat moss/Long fibered sphagnum moss?

Peat moss is partially degraded or composted Sphagnum moss. Long Fibered Sphagnum Moss is dead but undegraded moss.
Can we have the pics for degraded or composite & long fibered and live sphagnum moss ??
as i found some brown color peat moss, white moss and the green sphagnum moss in the nursery so i am a bit confused ?
is this sphagnum moss ??
peat moss
peat moss
IMG_001 - Copy.JPG (138.22 KiB) Viewed 5305 times
what bout this ?
peat moss
peat moss
Peat_Moss.jpg (88.27 KiB) Viewed 5305 times
dmagnan wrote: 5. Can vermiculite substitute for perlite?
Perlite is mostly quartz(SiO2), which is insoluble and inert. This is why It's preferred over many other sands and soils, which
...........
I found 2-3 types of perlite :- expanded /unexpanded perlite. Also white color, light gray and glossy black color perlite
Also different perlite has different granular size 1. coarse, 2, medium and 3. very fine (pics will be helpful). Which one to be used ?

Else the article is really helpful, Please add some pics in the same.
Thanks
Last edited by akshat on Tue Dec 13, 2011 4:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
By stitz25b
Posts:  2247
Joined:  Mon Sep 27, 2010 11:10 am
#126790
i have some sawdust i use for my guinea pigs and i was wondering ig i could you a mix of 3:1:1 sawdust, perlite, peat
By dmagnan
Posts:  603
Joined:  Sun Apr 18, 2010 6:37 pm
#126859
akshat wrote:I still have few queries about the soil :-
dmagnan wrote: 1. What is peat moss/Long fibered sphagnum moss?

Peat moss is partially degraded or composted Sphagnum moss. Long Fibered Sphagnum Moss is dead but undegraded moss.
Can we have the pics for degraded or composite & long fibered and live sphagnum moss ??
as i found some brown color peat moss, white moss and the green sphagnum moss in the nursery so i am a bit confused ?
is this sphagnum moss ??
IMG_001 - Copy.JPG
what bout this ?
Peat_Moss.jpg
dmagnan wrote: 5. Can vermiculite substitute for perlite?
Perlite is mostly quartz(SiO2), which is insoluble and inert. This is why It's preferred over many other sands and soils, which
...........
I found 2-3 types of perlite :- expanded /unexpanded perlite. Also white color, light gray and glossy black color perlite
Also different perlite has different granular size 1. coarse, 2, medium and 3. very fine (pics will be helpful). Which one to be used ?

Else the article is really helpful, Please add some pics in the same.
Thanks
The first pic is very degraded long fibered sphagnum moss, and probably shouldn't be used for soil. It should be yellow/brown if dead (much brighter than what you have there), green if alive (some people grow nepenthes and heliamphora in strictly live long fibered sphagnum), or have a green tint if it's dead and growing algae, as it is prone to do. Algae is generally harmless. White moss, whatever it is, isn't sphagnum and isn't appropriate for carnivorous plants.
The second picture is dry sphagnum peat moss, (usually just referred to as peat moss, but not all peat is sphagnum) and is the normal stuff everyone uses. While I don't remember about the chemistry, I can link the wikipedia article:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peat#Formation.
Short story is, peat bogs provide a condition in which the moss is prevented from breaking down completely (all the nutrients and nitrogen getting used up by bacteria and other microorganisms), which is what happened to the sphagnum moss in that first picture. My nepenthes are in relatively fresh long fibered sphagnum and I'll get some pictures tomorrow morning.

As for the perlite, I had no idea all those kinds existed, in all honesty. But you want the expanded for best aeration of the soil, as it's basically pumice (lots of holes like a sponge), which has a lot of surface area and allows for lots of evaporation/air retention. I also think it's what most people use. I've never seen perlite that wasn't white, so stick with that, because it's tried and tested. If you want the other colors you can figure out why they are colored the way they are and if it's safe for carnivorous plants (low in dissolved solids, avoid all chemicals where possible). If it's just charcoal which provides the color like I expect, it should be fine. As for size, big chunks of perlite tend to float to the top of soil mixes if you water from the top or the pot gets rained on. The size is going to affect water retention and aeration, so you'll have to adjust your peat:perlite ratios or watering schedule accordingly. Pretty much no matter what you pick, if you follow the watering rules, you can use any size you want. The watering rules are (in no particular order) 1. Moist, not wet 2. Let the soil get to nearly dry on the top before watering again 3. Never let the soil dry out completely. Oh and less water during winter.

If you don't mind, I'll quote you for the "size of perlite" question in the article, and add my and any other answers which are posted, because that's a good one.
dmagnan liked this
By dmagnan
Posts:  603
Joined:  Sun Apr 18, 2010 6:37 pm
#126862
stitz25b wrote:i have some sawdust i use for my guinea pigs and i was wondering ig i could you a mix of 3:1:1 sawdust, perlite, peat
I've never seen anyone try this before. If you can test the TDS of a sawdust slurry after it's sat for a few days, and it's at an acceptable level, I don't see why not. It would also be a good idea to try to find out the pH of that soil mix, and keep an eye on it over the first few months, as I don't know what degrading wood would do to the acidity of the soil, and if it would overpower acidity of the peat. You can probably get aquarium test kits to check the pH.
By akshat
Posts:  9
Joined:  Fri Nov 18, 2011 10:57 am
#127043
Thanks Dave,
dmagnan wrote: White moss, whatever it is, isn't sphagnum and isn't appropriate for carnivorous plants.
Here in the below discussion we have a pic of white moss and its stated as dead sphagnum moss,
http://www.flytrapcare.com/phpBB3/need- ... t9760.html
dmagnan wrote: If you don't mind, I'll quote you for the "size of perlite" question in the article, and add my and any other answers which are posted, because that's a good one.
sure Dave, that's nice of you,

Thanks
Akshat
By dmagnan
Posts:  603
Joined:  Sun Apr 18, 2010 6:37 pm
#127136
Oh yeah, that's sphagnum, I've just never heard of it referred to as "white moss" before.
By bowlyB
Posts:  74
Joined:  Thu Feb 10, 2011 3:38 am
#127412
Well, thats what we call it here since it is only seen very rarely here and it's the most practicality descriptive term "White moss". The pic posted is of a quite old and worn out sample ... the sphagnum i have is light brown / golden - white.
Otherwise 99% of indian nurseries and garden centers make a dumb face when asked of sphagnum moss....
and all of them use sheet moss so that's what they give ... because it's the most common moss type in india.
bowlyB liked this
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By Steve_D
Location: 
Posts:  3913
Joined:  Tue Nov 18, 2008 5:06 pm
#147048
pixar wrote:I need you guys help figuring out which is best for CP.
All their various types of peat moss will probably work well, so you might want to go for the least expensive. The "standard brown" and "natural blend" both look good. The finer (more thoroughly ground) types I would personally avoid (more compaction, less aeration in a mix), and if any are fancy or rare and therefore expensive, I would personally avoid those types of sphagnum peat moss too. Happy growing! :)
By anthony89uk
Posts:  5
Joined:  Fri Aug 17, 2012 9:45 am
#151562
iv read to avoid evergreen products because they have stuff added etc.

iv found a guy on ebay selling Irish Peat Moss with this decription:

Evergreen Irish Moss Peat is a traditional screened medium grade peat.

Evergreen Irish Moss Peat is made from carefully selected sphagnum mosses that are screened and blended to produce a superior product, not only for retailing but for the professional grower.
The raw material for our peat production is harvested from large raised bog areas which have developed under favourable climatic conditions. This is the natural habitat for the sphagnum moss which is solely used in the production of the Evergreen Irish Traditional Moss Peat Range.
Peat provides a healthy environment to promote plant growth.

A natural product, free from artificial additives, it ensures easy maintenance by assisting sandy soil to retain water and nutrients and opens up heavy soils and generally improves the structure of all soil types.

Ideal use as a soil conditioner, for planting out, mulching compost and making lawn improvement.



this should be ok to use with a mix of perlite and long fibre sphagnum moss i have?

thanks
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