Creating a Non-Standard Mix

Josiana

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I am apparently several hours from a shop that sells akadama, pumice, or lava rock. And the majority of the local shops only sell potting soil, lekaculor (clay pebbles), and orchid mix.

So this is the mix I have created
- 1/2 potting soil/small lecakulor mix
- 1/4 perlite
- 1/4 orchid mix

Thoughts? Should I add more orchid mix?
 

sparklemotion

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What is in the "orchid mix"?

Nigel Saunders uses 1:1 turface and perlite. A lot of people hate perlite but the trees that I have in that mix seemed to be fine this past summer.

So, I would lean more towards 1/2 perlite and 1/2 lecakulor (which I understand to be kind of like turface).
 

Anthony

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Josiana,

we have a home-made form of leca [ the fired clay pebbles ] with just a small quantity
of an organic.

Grows ficus types well and they don't like a lot of water.

So you could test a mix of say 80 to 90 % Leca with 20 to 10 % peat moss.
Try to get the smaller sized leca, say 10 mm to 8 mm.
Yes, I know they are irregular in shape.

Remember ------- Test,
Use expendable cuttings or low cost plants.
Good Day
Anthony.

* Late spring is the best time for the tests.
 

Josiana

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Thank you for the reply, sparklemotion!

The orchid mix is fir bark, peat moss, and charcoal.
 

Josiana

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Thank you, Anthony. The lecakulor is mixed with potting soil. So next time I will just buy the small lecakulor alone. :)
 

sorce

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Thoughts? Should I add more orchid mix
What are you growing?

What is the precipitation like?

Hot summers?

Plastic pots or breathable Terra cotta?

How often can you water?

Sweden is on this page for kitty litter brands.
http://www.bonsai4me.com/Basics/Basicscatlitter page3.html

I would Probly look for that....
And maybe add some lek a.

But potting soil and peat is going to make you think about watering too much.

IMO....the best soil is one you Can water once a day without thinking much.

Sorce
 

Josiana

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I will be growing the juniperus chinesis stricta. In spring we either have snow or rain, and the summers do not get warm until August (near 20c/68f).
My spouse and I are making few wood training pots similar to Vance Wood's. And we travel only few times a year, but we are thinking to live on a boat (20m).

What do you think for this mix?
-1/2 Small lecakulor
-1/4 Perlite
-1/4 Kitty litter
 

sorce

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-1/4 Perlite
Probly ditch that which floats!

Half leka half litter.

The care required to water a pot with floaties is too time consuming.
Some mornings you may have to water fast and leave....
Hard to not splash out floaties in haste.

Heavy rains just after repotting, before the roots can hold it still, can also lead to wash out and/or settling.
Which leads to dancing stuff under eaves...
Which is also a waste of time.

I like to make it as simple as possible, so more time can be spent thinking of design.

Sorce
 

Josiana

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Thank you, Sorce! Yes, I think this is a good idea. I certainly do not any soil substrate to float out of the pot. :)
 

M. Frary

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If stuff floats out I don't believe the soil it's draining well enough.
I put perlite in a few different pots and colanders last year.
It stays where it is as long as water doesn't pool up.
I water hard with a hose and wand with the shower head. Water comes out pretty fast.
 

augustine

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Personally I think you can use the components you listed MINUS the potting soil. I use 1:1 perlite and bark for deciduous material. (orchid mix. I've read that kitty litter is ok as long as it's fired and will not turn to mush. (not easy to find in the US)
 

Paradox

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You're in Sweden, temperate zone.

I suspect that mix will be and stay too wet
 

GrimLore

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I put perlite in a few different pots and colanders last year. It stays where it is as long as water doesn't pool up.
100% with you an that one. I use a lot of perlite in my nursery mix. I also find when I mix the Compost and Sand they mix FAR more evenly when dry. I soak the Perlite before mixing it in to that and it stays put.

Grimmy
 

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