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Peat vs coco fiber. What one study shows


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#1 Proud Marine Dad

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 09:49 AM

coirhttp://cpl.usu.edu/f...ub__9468201.pdf

A good article for those wondering

Edited by Proud Marine Dad, 21 February 2014 - 10:45 AM.

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#2 JoynersHotPeppers

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 11:03 AM

Thanks for posting this, I will say I have noticed stunted growth this year more so than ever and I am in 100% cc. I will be potting up much sooner.


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#3 Proud Marine Dad

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 11:13 AM

Glad you liked it Joyner.
Just another reason why I use Canadian sphagnum peat moss. ;)

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#4 JoynersHotPeppers

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 11:19 AM

This winter has played a huge role in my crappy grow thus far. Time to kick into gear and beat winter senseless! 


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#5 Hybrid Mode 01

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 12:28 PM

"Treatments 2 and 3 did not require dolomite lime because they have a pH suitable for growing all of the crops tested."

 

(^^ Quoted from article) 

 

    So the treatments in the first experiment were: brand "A" coir + perlite, brand "B" coir + perlite, and peat + perlite + dolomitic lime? Hmmm. I wonder why they didn't opt to adjust the pH in the peat treatment using an amendment that doesn't contain additional nutrients. That doesn't sound like science, that sounds like "science". 

    Any ideas? Am I missing something? Either way, thanks for posting this, PMD!



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#6 JoynersHotPeppers

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 01:27 PM

I also caught that and feel like it may be a bit biased but good information since I am a between the line reader.  :shh:


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#7 Proud Marine Dad

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 01:31 PM

I don't know either gentleman I just delivered the mail, I didn't write the letter. ;)
All I know is the canna growers I talk to are not fans of coir for whatever reason.

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 02:09 PM

     Either way, definitely reason for further reading. Thanks again for posting, it's good to know that I'm not the only dork around here who likes to read primary research articles!  :D



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#9 McGuiver

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 04:46 PM

Glad you liked it Joyner.
Just another reason why I use Canadian sphagnum peat moss. ;)


I also love Canadian sphagnum peat moss. I use Sunshine #4 mix to start my seedlings after they sprout. I love this stuff. Very pricey, but you get what you pay for...

#10 JoynersHotPeppers

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 04:49 PM

I also love Canadian sphagnum peat moss. I use Sunshine #4 mix to start my seedlings after they sprout. I love this stuff. Very pricey, but you get what you pay for...

Hope you are growing something else green to recover that spend.  :high:

 

I move to Pro-Mix and in fact I am doing that today based off my crappy season thus far. 


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#11 Proud Marine Dad

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 04:55 PM

Hope you are growing something else green to recover that spend.  :high:
 

Yes sir I am! But I'm not using overpriced bagged soil. ;)

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#12 McGuiver

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 04:56 PM

Hope you are growing something else green to recover that spend.  :high:
 
I move to Pro-Mix and in fact I am doing that today based off my crappy season thus far.

Only green peppers. I also use the old potting mix to help start my compost. It does a great job. I also grow avocado trees from seed in this stuff. They grow very fast when placed in good soil.

Edited by McGuiver, 22 February 2014 - 12:58 AM.


#13 JoynersHotPeppers

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 05:00 PM

Yes sir I am! But I'm not using overpriced bagged soil. ;)

Me either, check my square foot garden mix :) I can say no more cc next year, can't be biting nails when growing is meant to be fun and hands off!


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#14 Proud Marine Dad

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 05:06 PM

I'm using peat moss, my compost and vermicompost, red lava rock for aeration, Espoma tomato tone, kelp meal, alfalfa meal, neem cake, crab meal, gaia green glacial rock dust, and Espoma garden lime. No pH worries, just water and watch it do its thing. ;)

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#15 Blister

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 12:41 AM

I've read and posted a link to this article a few years ago. Yes it is just one study and frankly it's a great demonstration of what happens when you treat coco like soil. It's a bit dated and the understanding of coco as a root zone medium has come a long way since this research was conducted. After surfing the 420 sites for info before I started my coco grow, I have a few quick hits on the problems with this article:

- you can't treat coco like soil. It's far closer to hydroponics than it is to soil.
- you must feed with every watering. Plain water is not enough.
- coco specific nutrients are recommended, although GREATFULHE3D's modified Lucus formula is a prime example of non-coco specific nutrients and their successful use in coir.
- you must ph your water. 5.8-6 is optimum. Too high or low and you lock out nutrients. They did not mention the ph level of the water they were using or if it was hard or soft.
- water quality has an impact on your success e.g. hard water can lock out nutrients.
- not all coco is created equal. Some contain higher salt levels and need to be rinsed and buffered. In the case of the article they recognized that some coir contained elevated levels and assumed that the salts would be rinsed out during waterings. It takes a lot of water to rinse it out. That is a flaw in the research.

Having grown in both peat based potting mix and now coco, I can say that I have never seen the results I've experienced in coco. Larger root balls (Seriously, the roots are poking out the top of the coco! It's crazy), faster growth, and dramatically larger plants for the same sized pots. Coco isn't for everyone and your mileage may vary. Just don't treat coco like soil and expect it to give the same results.

Feel free to browse my glog to see how my coco grow is doing.

http://thehotpepper....-led-coco-grow/

Neil

Edited by Blister, 22 February 2014 - 12:49 AM.


#16 McGuiver

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 01:04 AM

For my 25 gallon yard pots, I do mix in my old coco liners. I cut them up in small pieces and mix them into the soil. Helps to keep the soil from compacting. That is the only way I use coco, or use coco liners in hanging pots...

#17 Chilidude

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 08:48 AM

Have been a very happy 100% coco peat grower and Blister already said the most important things regarding growing in coco, so i will just leave a link to my glog:

 

http://thehotpepper....oroutdoor-glog/


Edited by Chilidude, 22 February 2014 - 08:49 AM.


#18 Proud Marine Dad

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 10:45 AM

If you mix a good soil pH is irrelevant. ;)

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#19 Blister

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 02:49 PM

Sure. If you amend the soil (add in ph buffers/adjusters when mixing) you won't have to deal with ph so it's irrelevant... but, uh, by adding ph buffers to your mix means you had to deal with it so it's not really irrelevant is it?

Dolomitic Lime is also not recommended as a ph buffer for coco. Given the nature of coco and how it locks up specific nutrients while releasing others, the addition of large amounts of calcium and magnesium would throw the nutrient balance way out of whack and lock out essential nutrients. Doing so produces the results you see in the report. Basically it all comes down to you needing to PH your water rather than attempt to balance the PH in your grow medium like you do with soil. Again you can't treat coco like soil and expect the same results. It has it's own quirks that you need to deal with.

Neil

#20 jojo

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 03:47 PM

I kinda regret buying my bricks on bricks of bricks of coco now.






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