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RE: Potted Improved Meyer Lemon tree in need of attention (Follow-Up #43)

posted by: Ohiofem on 03.20.2014 at 04:33 pm in Container Gardening Forum

I will give you the link below. I encourage you to read Al's whole opening explanation to understand why he makes the mixes they way he does. But, here are the recipes quoted directly from that post:

The 5:1:1 mix:

5 parts pine bark fines, dust - 3/8 (size is important
1 part sphagnum peat (not reed or sedge peat please)
1-2 parts perlite (coarse, if you can get it)
garden lime (or gypsum in some cases)
controlled release fertilizer (if preferred)

Big batch:
2-3 cu ft pine bark fines
5 gallons peat
5 gallons perlite
2 cups dolomitic (garden) lime (or gypsum in some cases)
2 cups CRF (if preferred)

Small batch:
3 gallons pine bark
1/2 gallon peat
1/2 gallon perlite
4 tbsp lime (or gypsum in some cases)
1/4 cup CRF (if preferred)

I have seen advice that some highly organic (practically speaking - almost all container soils are highly organic) container soils are productive for up to 5 years or more. I disagree and will explain why if there is interest. Even if you were to substitute fir bark for pine bark in this recipe (and this recipe will long outlast any peat based soil) you should only expect a maximum of two to three years life before a repot is in order. Usually perennials, including trees (they're perennials too) should be repotted more frequently to insure they can grow at as close to their genetic potential within the limits of other cultural factors as possible. If a soil is desired that will retain structure for long periods, we need to look more to inorganic components. Some examples are crushed granite, fine stone, VERY coarse sand (see above - usually no smaller than BB size in containers, please), Haydite, lava rock (pumice), Turface, calcined DE, and others.

For long term (especially woody) plantings and houseplants, I use a superb soil that is extremely durable and structurally sound. The basic mix is equal parts of screened pine bark, Turface, and crushed granite.

The gritty mix:

1 part uncomposted screened pine or fir bark (1/8-1/4")
1 part screened Turface
1 part crushed Gran-I-Grit (grower size) or #2 cherrystone
1 Tbsp gypsum per gallon of soil (eliminate if your fertilizer has Ca)
CRF (if desired)

I use 1/8 -1/4 tsp Epsom salts (MgSO4) per gallon of fertilizer solution when I fertilize if the fertilizer does not contain Mg (check your fertilizer - if it is soluble, it is probable it does not contain Ca or Mg. If I am using my currently favored fertilizer (I use it on everything), Dyna-Gro's Foliage-Pro in the 9-3-6 formulation, and I don't use gypsum or Epsom salts in the fertilizer solution.

Here is a link that might be useful: Container Soils - Water Movement and Retention XVIII

This post was edited by Ohiofem on Thu, Mar 20, 14 at 16:39

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clipped on: 07.15.2014 at 03:30 pm    last updated on: 07.15.2014 at 03:30 pm

Tomorrow

posted by: Citrus-Steve on 02.17.2013 at 04:18 pm in Citrus Forum

Hello all. I know the 5-1-1 mix has been discussed ad-nauseum but tomorrow I plan on replanting my five citrus and want to make sure I have the "right" recipe down before I purchase and go through with the repot. This is what I have:

The 5:1:1 mix:

5 parts pine bark fines (partially composted fines are best)
1 part sphagnum peat (not reed or sedge peat please)
1-2 parts perlite
garden lime (or gypsum in some cases)
controlled release fertilizer (if preferred)

Big batch:
2-3 cu ft pine bark fines
5 gallons peat
5 gallons perlite
2 cups dolomitic (garden) lime (or gypsum in some cases)
2 cups CRF (if preferred)

Is this what (verbatim) all of you use? I am in zone 5 and not sure about the lime/gypsum preference. I've got issues with scale and gnats and pretty sure my Ocean Forest soil and Dr. Earth fertilizer is causing it, so I am switching to the 5-1-1 and foliage pro.

Is this the right mix above?

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clipped on: 04.03.2014 at 05:08 pm    last updated on: 04.03.2014 at 05:08 pm

RE: Meyers Lemon Care (Follow-Up #12)

posted by: msugrl2010 on 07.10.2013 at 08:17 pm in Citrus Forum

Lady bug,

Here's a link for making Al's gritty mix. It's the best thing for a citrus plant! I have a 1 yr old cara cara orange tree, and a 1 yr old meyer lemon tree and they thrive in it! I live in the north (MI) where we don't have warm temperatures year round and it's essential to have a fast draining mix.

Here's the how to for making Al's gritty mix. this site will show you what materials you need, (only 3) the ratio they will need to be made in, how to prepare the ingredients, and where to find the ingredients.
http://www.etenix.com/gardening/grittymix

for turface I bought a bag from a distributor that was in my area. this site will tell you what distributors are in your state too. They smallest bag they come in are 50lb bags, but it's only like $12 and you can have extra for a while to come when you will need to pot up.
http://www.turface.com/distributors/state/

for granite grit I get a 25lb bag of poultry grit. The picture below is exactly what I get from tractor supply. You can find poultry grit at any farm store or feed store. Note: make sure you get poultry grit and not chick grit! chick grit is still crushed granite but it will be too small to be useful.
http://reviews.tractorsupply.com/0519/104396299/manna-pro-poultry-grit-25-lb-reviews/reviews.htm

for fine bark I use repti bark that I get at the pet store. you can find it at any pet store.
http://www.petsmart.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2752663

Here's the fertilizer I use, it's called foliage pro, I use 1 tsp a week and mix it with about 1/2 gallon - 1 full gallon. I only water my citrus once a week right now, and it's the perfect amount for them.
http://www.amazon.com/Orchids-R-Us-Inc-Foliage/dp/B0029O9V5A/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1373501343&sr=8-2&keywords=foliage+pro

when winter sets in I intend to do what is shown in the 2nd picture in the link below. This cheap way to give sun to your plant is approved by four winds! (a dwarf citrus tree farm in Cali where I bought my cara cara navel tree).
http://campaign.r20.constantcontact.com/render?llr=r5djbcdab&v=001gitP1NKQiAL2nkoUyEtytnLpU27fXbYECjwoNqyYC15N8MhHGVL5289_GqFybHz4UxyZoNq_04ZCmQwcyEa3dM3GzPnEqzxAv-7VwFEhTO4dBGb9HlEyuQ%3D%3D

I've attached a picture of my cara cara navel tree. Hope this helps! (it has a cover over it when it sits outside to protect it from too much water! not sure where you are at, but in MI we've had wayyy too much rain).

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clipped on: 04.02.2014 at 12:02 pm    last updated on: 04.02.2014 at 12:02 pm

RE: Camellia sinensis, tea question (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: forrestal on 09.15.2006 at 11:32 pm in Camellia Forum

I have planted some camellia sinensis too for the same reason. I also have found that they are nice landscape plants -- quick growing with fragrant white blooms. For tea making instructions, here is a link to an excellent website (Gene's Nursery in Savannah) -- click on "Tea" and you will find instructions on how to make the various teas from camellia sinensis leaves. Have fun!

Here is a link that might be useful: Gene's Nursery

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clipped on: 03.27.2014 at 05:08 pm    last updated on: 03.27.2014 at 05:08 pm