Is Reusing Potting Soil A Good Idea?

The idea that reusing potting soil is taboo has been in place since the early days of cultivating plants in containers. But so has the direction that one should never reuse the pots themselves. Yet, millions of people recycle pots, so why not get more use from the potting soil too? After all, backyard garden and farm field soil isn’t tossed every time a new crop is planted. This article is republished here from UK Issue 7 of Garden Culture Magazine. It originally appeared under the title, Reusing Your Potting Soil. If you are a serious grower, you have easily invested...

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Make Your Own Organic Soil Mix

Soil is like water. Both sustain life as we know it, yet they are so omnipresent that we take them for granted. And due to both their importance and complexity, the limitations of language cannot do them justice. The soil is under our feet at all times, and can also be purchased in a bag at the hardware store. Soil is the primary basis by which we grow food, and the same field can also be subjected to the littering of our poisons. But beyond it all, the soil may very well be the most important substance on Earth. Soil creates and sustains all of life. Soil allows...

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All Fertilizers Are Different

If you have grown a garden then you have used fertilizers. Fertilizer is a human invention that supports the greater part of success in modern agriculture and home gardening. Used properly, fertilizers can provide complete nutrition, and produce premium plants, but did you know that fertilizer is not the only way you can nourish the plants that you grow? This article is republished here from Issue 6 of Garden Culture Magazine. It originally appeared under the title, Higher Levels of Plant Nutrition. All fertilizer is not the same. There are macronutrients and micronutrients, or you can clearly define fertilizers...

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What Is Fertilizer, Anyway? … Part 1

[column size=one_half position=first ]The technology of farming is what literally started humanity. That’s right, before farming we hunted and gathered with most of our attention paid to survival instead of specializing. The first documented use of fertilizer is of Europe’s earliest farmers applying manure on their fields around 8,000 years ago. No doubt these ancient farmers noticed the thriving plants in the dung heap, and realized that using manure in their fields will help their plants grow bigger, better, faster. Mined inorganic fertilizers have been in use for many centuries, whereas chemically synthesized inorganic[/column][column size=one_half position=last ][alert type=white ]Evan Folds from Progressive Farms...

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Using Compost Tea in Hydroponics

Breaking the rules: sometimes soilless growing benefits hugely from soil techniques. Take the idea of using compost tea in hydroponics. It will alter everything from your plants’ perspective. When people are first introduced to hydroponics, many marvel at the concept of roots growing in water, and the “technology” involved, or the magic of producing yields ten – even twenty times larger per acre than those accomplished in soil. While these are certainly real and relevant ideas, the reality is that a plant is a plant. Even if it was growing on Mars, it would still require the same basic requirements provided by Mother Nature. The...

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