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5-1-1 mix recipe --- a couple questions

posted by: woohooman on 06.07.2012 at 01:25 am in Hot Pepper Forum

Ok. I just bought a ghost seedling from a nursery today and am kinda excited to get going on it and I keep reading about this 5-1-1 mix. DaMonkey gave me a modified recipe---

4 1/2 parts pine bark (range: 1/8" - 1/2")
1/2 part pine bark (range: 1/16" - 1/8")
1/2 part coarse perlite (range: 1/8" - 1/4")
1/2 part coarse perlite (range: 1/16" - 1/8")
1/2 part turface (range: 1/8" - 1/4")
1/2 part turface (range: 1/16" - 1/8")

So here's my questions:

Is there an ORIGINAL 5-1-1 mix or is the above an updated(better) version of the original?

Where do I find the bark? --- the only bark I've ever NOTICED at Lowe's/home depot/walmart is that stuff which is usually used for mulching.

Can't I just use something like THIS for the woody material?

http://www.sandiego.gov/environmental-services/pdf/miramar/NaturalLogFines.pdf

I can get this stuff for $18/yd at the city landfill--- their compost and mulch have turned out to be great.

Regarding the perlite, the only perlite I ever(once again) NOTICE is stuff that's in a small bag. Seems like it could get kind of pricey even to have just a few 5 gallon buckets of plants. One of the main reasons I got into gardening was price of FOOD. I WILL NOT(yes, I'm shouting) spend more money raising a foodstuff than what I can go down to the store/farmer's market,etc. and purchase it. If I wanted to grow something just for the fun of it and nothing else, I'd get one of those chia pets.

I thought perlite was mainly used when STARTING seedlings, not actually part of a 5-50 gallon container... [/shrug]. I just normally add a good dose of sphagnum to my containers for water retention.

My recipe(although never measured) is maybe half bagged garden soil(something like kellogg's, miracle gro) a quarter peat(maybe less) and then the rest is some well aged compost(up until recently, homemade.) I've grown 2 Anaheims, 2 chile de arbol, 1 habanero and 1 cayenne( 2 plants each half oak barrel) and had great results on all.

Now. You're probably saying to yourself, "great results, why does he need OUR help?" Well, I've heard ghost chiles are finicky, and I don't have access to those barrels. That's why.. :)

Next-- Turface...never even heard of it--- LOL. Please help with where to get this stuff also and if there are any substitutes and/or cheaper alternatives.

Next question. Why the need for all the different sizes with the perlite and turface? I can understand the need for different sizes of chips/bark---porosity/drainage/compaction, etc.

Finally-- is a five gallon bucket with good drainage usually enough space for a ghost chile?

Actually, One more question. Am I overdoing it when I use a 15-30-15 flowering plant fert ever month or two with vegetables like tomatoes, peppers, squash, et al?

NOTES:

5-1-1
clipped on: 01.27.2013 at 10:47 pm    last updated on: 01.27.2013 at 10:47 pm