subdtrate

Discussion in 'New to Bonsai' started by whomever, Jan 5, 2017.

  1. whomever

    whomever Sapling

    Messages:
    44
    Location:
    Austin, Texas
    Hi All I am trying to understand the ratios for substrate,
    In general it is 60 ,20
    60 is course media ie akadama
    20 is grow media is: pine bark
    20 is course media is; lava rock

    So that means 80 would be the same type of media, so why two different media of the same type?

    Am I understanding this correctly?
     
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  3. aml1014

    aml1014 Masterpiece

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    If I were to use those 3 together I'd lean towards using equal parts of each.
    Soil preference is a huge debate, find what works for you.

    Aaron
     
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  4. Solange

    Solange Shohin

    Messages:
    334
    Location:
    North Central PA - 6A
    Akadama is volcanic clay, but is not the same as lava rock (which is probably red or black scoria). Pumice is another type of volcanic material different than either. Akadama and lava rock are visually and functionally different. Hope that helps! let me find markyscotts soil resource for you, and I'll post a link :)
     
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  5. Solange

    Solange Shohin

    Messages:
    334
    Location:
    North Central PA - 6A
  6. whomever

    whomever Sapling

    Messages:
    44
    Location:
    Austin, Texas
    Thank you, I Probably should had expanded more
    what i was thinking of is expanded shale at 75 and the remainder coconut husk, which i think satisfy the requirements of drain easy ,not pack down and able to retain some moisture .
    I am just wondering if there is a reason why most or all recipes for substrate is 3 items inshad of 2
     
  7. Solange

    Solange Shohin

    Messages:
    334
    Location:
    North Central PA - 6A
    Oh I see were I got mixed up, the course vs grow media. Not sure where that terminology is coming from but all those elements support growth. An organic element is not necessarily needed. All of this is soil stuff hotly debated. A good place to start is to check out those links! :D
     
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  8. whomever

    whomever Sapling

    Messages:
    44
    Location:
    Austin, Texas
    is there a good mix to run out and buy when starting? I have https://goo.gl/KWYthM
    and just want to make sure I am not setting myself up to fail with over priced potting soil.
     
  9. whomever

    whomever Sapling

    Messages:
    44
    Location:
    Austin, Texas
    is there a good mix to run out and buy when starting? I have https://goo.gl/KWYthM
    and just want to make sure I am not setting myself up to fail with over priced potting soil.
     
  10. aml1014

    aml1014 Masterpiece

    Messages:
    3,050
    Location:
    Albuquerque new mexico
    I like the bonsai jack premixed inorganic soil, but it's a little pricey when you have more trees then you care to count like me:p

    Aaron
     
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  11. whomever

    whomever Sapling

    Messages:
    44
    Location:
    Austin, Texas
    in the process of checking it out , the terminology is cumming from a few different sites that started with bonsaiboy and i believed they used inorganic and organic instead of course and grow media
     
  12. aml1014

    aml1014 Masterpiece

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  13. whomever

    whomever Sapling

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    Location:
    Austin, Texas
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  14. aml1014

    aml1014 Masterpiece

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    Akadama is iffy in my climate but works very well for many people. I uses scoring and pumice in ALL of my soil. I've never used pine bark but have used fir bark with great success. What you have will do plenty good for you. If I ever bought a premixed soil though itd be bonsaijack.

    Aaron
     
  15. Paradox

    Paradox Masterpiece

    Messages:
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    Location:
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    Soil composition also depends on what you are putting into it.

    Pines and junipers generally get little to no organic material (pine bark, spagnum moss) in their soil. For my pines and junipers in training I use lava, pumice and gravel all sifted to the same size. When the trees go into more bonsai shaped training pots or bonsai pots proper, I use lava, pumice, akadama and gravel in equal parts. Most people dont use any gravel at all.

    For trees that like to be more moist, I might put in some pine bark for a mix of 1 part pine bark, 1 part gravel, 1 part lava and 1 part pumice. You dont want your soil to retain alot of water. Too wet = rotted roots. The soil needs to drain freely and retain moisture but not a lot of water.
     
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  16. Potawatomi13

    Potawatomi13 Omono

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    Here goes soil wars again:rolleyes:.
     
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  17. Solange

    Solange Shohin

    Messages:
    334
    Location:
    North Central PA - 6A
    the link to the tinyroots soil is weird. it says akadama in the main title but in the description says "100% organic double-sifted compost mulch, calcined clay, vermiculite, and Frit". That is shady to me. Never used this stuff so I can't say but it looks mostly like potting soil from the picture. Like @aml1014 I use lava, pumice, and sometimes fir bark, and mix and sift according to my needs or wants. Don't be discouraged you will figure it out.
     
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  18. bonsaidave

    bonsaidave Sapling

    Messages:
    42
    Location:
    DFW, Texas
    If nothing else it will look nice in the pot :D

    My first tree started in 100% lava and it did fine. My current soil mix, 2 years later, is more complex as I have learned more. Reading reading reading. It never ends!
     
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  19. bleumeon

    bleumeon Chumono

    Messages:
    651
    Location:
    Arcadia, CA
    I don't really mix my soil in precise ratios any more. I just toss together what I have on hand. Usually some recycled re-sifed old soil plus fresh scoria, pumice, bark or napa. I recently found some zeolite too which has high CEC and can work in place or with lava. In a climate like mine where the growing season is hot and dry I think using slightly smaller particles and more organic is better. If I were to use quarter inch sized particles and 1/3 or less organic I'd have to water like crazy in the summer. My sieve is a 3mm sieve or about 1/8th inch.

    For trees in the developing stage I think as long as you have a well aerated mix with proper watering your tree will do fine. Maybe in refinement especially when trying to compact the root system into a tiny pot soil composition and size is more important. I'm lucky to have local pre-sifted scoria sources at cheap prices and other components like pumice and bark can be found easily in my area. I use drystall for my pumice, some think its too small but I and many others use it with good results.

    You can make a decent mix out of perlite, bark, and diatomaceous earth all of which can be found and had for cheap. Just make sure you sift out the fines. Lava and pumice are good because they will retain a lot of air and won't be compacted or crushed like some organic components. I think perlite can act as a cheap substitute for pumice or lava but its very light and can be washed away during watering. Regardless of what mix you use make sure you water appropriately and pot your trees correctly. Even with a well draining mix if you over-pot your tree the roots will stay too wet.
     
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  20. sorce

    sorce Pokemon Go Master

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    Welcome to Crazy!

    Sorce
     
  21. aml1014

    aml1014 Masterpiece

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    You and Mike really Crack me up sir!

    Aaron
     

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