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

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By Intheswamp
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Posts:  1386
Joined:  Wed May 04, 2022 2:28 pm
#424910
I've got some sundew and sarrs seeds that will be coming out of stratification in a week, or two,...or three. :roll: :) I've also got some leaf-cuttings of some filiformis that I'm getting antsy about transplanting to lower populated pots.

Today, I decided to go ahead and put together a 50:50 peat/perlite mix. As usual, I did my OCD rinsing of the peat moss. Several 22ppm rainwater rinses, then a 1ppm rainwater rinse, and finally a 1ppm boiled rainwater rinse. :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

That left the perlite to be rinsed. I started to use a paint strainer bag to rinse the perlite in, but for the batch of growing medium I was doing the bag would barely hold enough and then there wasn't room to get water in it to rinse it good. So, I dumped the perlite in a 28-quart sterilite container and poured rainwater in. A container full of water and floating perlite is *so* much fun!!! I don't know how I missed this water sport as a kid...it would have been a wonderful summertime activity that *everyone* would want to take part in!!! :roll: :lol: Anyhow, I rinse it well and retrieved all the floating perlite from the water. Naturally, the water was thick, milky-looking. I can't help but think this fine silt and whatever else might not be good for the plants. But, when I poured the "milk" off I found almost a double-handful of heavier "gravel" at the bottom of the container. This is Vigoro branded perlite, a nice, big bag I ordered from Home Depot. Taking the perlite out of the bag it looks super bright with no impurities seen. Below are some shots of the rinsed perlite and the debris that was left in the bottom of the wash container. Except for a few pieces of perlite mixed in the heavy debris pictures were at the bottom of the water while the perlite was floating (as it should). It just caught my attention, so, according to my OCD'ish self I figured I'd post this. :mrgreen:

Btw, some how or another I managed to make exactly enough 50:50 mix to fill a 28-quart container, though I didn't plan it that way! Even a blind hog finds an acorn once in a while! :lol:
Attachments:
Heavy debris left in wash container.
Heavy debris left in wash container.
IMG_6753 (Custom).JPG (408.18 KiB) Viewed 631 times
Washed perlite.
Washed perlite.
IMG_6755 (Custom).JPG (349.45 KiB) Viewed 631 times
Washed perlite.
Washed perlite.
IMG_6751 (Custom).JPG (352.37 KiB) Viewed 631 times
Heavy debris left in wash container.
Heavy debris left in wash container.
IMG_6750 (Custom).JPG (467.73 KiB) Viewed 631 times
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By Intheswamp
Location: 
Posts:  1386
Joined:  Wed May 04, 2022 2:28 pm
#424912
...the rest of the photo story. :lol:
Attachments:
"The Bag".
"The Bag".
IMG_6761 (Custom).JPG (435.63 KiB) Viewed 630 times
Close-up of 50:50 peat/perlite mix.
Close-up of 50:50 peat/perlite mix.
IMG_6758 (Custom).JPG (866.12 KiB) Viewed 630 times
28-quart container of 50:50 mix.
28-quart container of 50:50 mix.
IMG_6757 (Custom).JPG (826.72 KiB) Viewed 630 times
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By Intheswamp
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Posts:  1386
Joined:  Wed May 04, 2022 2:28 pm
#424924
I dunno. I think growsundews.com was one of the first places I landed on and the website recommends rinsing the media so I did. After seeing the milky rinse water from perlite, finding some of the gritty stuff on the bottom of the buckets, and reading about the manufacturing process of it using whatever water was cheap and onhand...dirty water, salty water, whatever water...I decided to rinse the perlite. ;) Then, I read about reducing algae/mold/mosses by rinsing the peat moss... And, well, here I am..."OCD-Me"!!!! :lol:
By jetfire245
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Posts:  173
Joined:  Thu Apr 28, 2022 3:03 pm
#424930
To this day. I have never rinsed my peat or my perlite. I'm really not sure how I get away with it. I presume because the brands I buy just happen to not be screwed up enough to mess with my plants.

Anyhow, I recently started using coco coir instead of peat (highly recommended you make the switch) and I rinse my coco coir through a little process before finally using it. In this case though, I always test my incoming coco coir to check for high salt content.

Yeah - but like I said, I'm not sure why it's recommended to always rinse your media. I guess because it really helps eliminate your questions on soil contamination and/or something bad happening from stuff you didn't wash off.
By Gary
Posts:  118
Joined:  Fri Jul 08, 2022 3:23 pm
#428852
Yeah, I like to rinse both the screened peat moss and Perlite as well. I have a Zero Water tank that I use for watering the CPs. I do a 3X rinse on the peat moss and maybe 2X on the Perlite. The Perlite runoff is usually really milky in color at first but clears up quickly. After rinsing I mix the two and fill the pots.
Intheswamp liked this
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