Soil Types: Home Container Gardening Tips, Ideas & Advice

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Learn how to choose soil types for a container garden in this free home gardening video. Get beginner gardening tips, ideas & advice.

Part of the Video Series: Container Gardening Tips & Plans
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Video Transcript

Hi! My name is Scott Reil and on behalf of Expert Village, I would like to talk to you about container gardening. There are a lot of different soils out there for container mixes. I don’t like to use right off the rack container mix because quite often its got fertilizers already added, or its quite simply just peat with pear light mixed in. I do organic culture. I like to mix a little more readily available food in there, some more humus and whatnot. So I am going to show you how to make a good organic mix for containers. The first thing to start with is some good old fashioned potting mix. Now for a lot of people, this is the one step that will get them the rest of the way. And would I be able to grow in my container mix like this? Well, yeah probably but again, heat does not break down readily and when it does break down, it tends to be kind of acidic and the pear light doesn’t break down at all. There’s not a lot of extra food here for my plants, so what I like to do is to add in gardening soil, in this case from my friends at the Coast of Maine. And it’s made with a lot of extra humus, with kelp, with other fertilizers in it that are going to help add a lot of organic component in humus, and you can tell just to look at it how black and rich this is. Now we are really adding some organic content back to the soil. It is going to make it a little bit heavier than the original mix would but that’s okay with me. Again, it worked building a good organic soil it is going to have the fungal structures and things that will help keep it a white open area soil like woodland soil. One last secret for me is cocoa mulch. Now with that same idea in mind, cocoa mulch has a white springy texture. I go back to compact and it just bounces right back to shape. Cocoa mulch. Although the name would suggest that it is mulch, I don’t like it as a mulch, but I love it for the soil amendment, because it helps build so those fungal soil strains that really work well. Now I am going to mix a big batch of this because we have a lot of containers to do but this is something that you could certainly mix yourself in smaller quantities. So I mixed about 3 parts of potting mix to 1 part soil to 1 part cocoa mulch and I am going to give that a good fluffing up with a fork, give it a good mix and I’ll be ready to pack containers in just a minute.

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