Look @ what I found for Sifting~~please share what you use.~

jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)March 14, 2011

It's getting to be that time when everyone is getting ready for the growing season! I know I have tons to get sifted and i'm sure others do too!

I found this great strainer last night at Wal Mart! It was a little costly, @$16.00 , but I figured by the time I round up lumber, and buy a few tools, It would be easier and quicker to just get this. ;-)

I had hubby measure this for me, I don't get along with tape measures! LOL! and the squares are just a hair under 1/8" of a inch. So it will work great for the bark for the gritty mix!

I know there are many posts all over GW with pictures of what everyone is using, but I thought it would be nice to have it all in one post.

I know we have new members that could use the extra help and see how others are putting these great mixes together.

Please feel free to post any pictures and info that you have that would help others. :-)

Any of the items you use, and techniques. :-)

Lets help each other out and make this a beautiful growing season, indoors and out!


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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Great find, JJ! Looks light, durable, and comfortable to use!

What I use:

I have 2 sets (2 different sizes) of 4 different mesh gradients.


    Bookmark   March 14, 2011 at 1:36PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Good morning, JoJo and Al!

These are my two main screening/sifting tools - a plastic nursery flat (for transporting plants),
and a large pond-basket with 1/16 and 1/8 inch perforations around the bottom and outer walls.


    Bookmark   March 14, 2011 at 2:09PM
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puglvr1(9b central FL)

Hi Jojo! Great find! I use something very similar (size/holes) wise like the one you just purchased. I bought mine at Target a few years ago.

Hi Al, yours looks great and when Hubby retires that's one of his projects...but not for a few more years,lol...

Hey Josh, I found a pond basket at Lowe's similar to the large(left picture) but the only problem is the bottom holes were the size of the one on the right! Its so weird the bottom holes looks like the right size but the holes on the sides were different much larger...So NO way it would have worked :o(...will keep checking.

Jojo...here's mine.

Sorry its blurry...but you can see the size.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2011 at 7:45PM
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peapod13(8 South Sound WA)

I actually order a 6" soil sifter from an online bonsai place. It came with a screen that was close to 1/8" and a screen that was between 1/4" and 3/8". It was also cheaper than buying hardware cloth and making up homemade screens. The down side is, it is very small. It took me all day one Saturday and part of another Saturday to screen enough components to make enough mix to fill my three 7.5 - 8 gallon cedar containers for my Japanese maples.


    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 12:09AM
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I too am using a Bonsai Sieve. Here is what the three screens look like.

Unfortunately I don't have the tools needed to make my own wood framed sieves, so I bought this on line (EBay).


    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 11:40AM
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I don't have a photo, but I use something similar to the colander JoJo found. It's just a kitchen utensil, found in the housewares section of the local store!

I like Josh's idea, too... and Al's are very nice! A set of bonsai screens would be wonderful... multiple uses!

Great pictures, everyone... and great ideas! This should help folks who aren't too sure of what we mean when we say we sift and screen ingredients, whether to remove dust and particles too small... or to make certain the items we're using are comparable in size.

When it comes to the grittier mediums... size does matter! ;-)

    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 1:28PM
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jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

Hi Everyone!
Thanks so much for taking the time to post your pictures! As both us Jodi's feel, it will help many to understand the process better. :-) 'Size does matter!' ;-)

A little more info about the one I posted .
Al, your right about the easy handling. I'm mixing in small batches right now, so it's perfect! Next season, I want screens like yours! So thank you for posting the 'blue prints' for hubby. ;-)
This one will be easy for my son too. He's anxious to make his own mixes! Which he should, he has tons of plants and cactus and succulents!

Mine is 13" long, 9 wide, and about 5" deep. Not alot of room for it to slosh out. ;-) lol..

I was going to order bonsai screens , but the plants went crazy leafing out! I'm going to see about getting a flat in the next day or so for the 1/4" bark.

And for now, I have a huge chunk of 1/2" i'm just using as is, for the 5-1-1 mix.
For the 1/16", a kitchen strainer, but I may take insect screen and see about molding it to the inside of the new colander. It would be easier to hold.

I have all the sizes of wire, but hubby doesn't have time to make the frames like Al uses, and it would take me a month to find the tools! Hubby let the shed get a little messy. ;-)

So, for now, it's find simple ways. :-)

    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 1:47PM
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