Gritty Mix Planting Update

kernul1April 25, 2011

Hey guys,

I wanted to post a follow-up to my gritty mix adventure. I've gotten about 100 plants in the gritty mix now over about 20 different containers/baskets.

It has been a great learning experience going through the process and always a big thank you to Al for sharing his wisdom with everyone.

Below are series of pictures on the plants I put in and how they are faring. These are all in bright shade, zone 10, san francisco.

For the most part, everything has adapted very well. I had a few casualties with some impatients where I think I took off too many roots during the bare root process (some root systems were just so finely knotted together that it was tough to get the old soil out).

I may have underwatered a little bit as well as I was still learning on the difference in dry at the wick vs dry at the top of the pot (most of the new plants had shallow root structures).

Feel free to critique away if you see any areas I an improve on. Thanks!

I still like to use a wick for the gritty mix. I basically put all my pots on a dual stand, to get some height off the ground. I think drill a hold and put the wick through.

I also put in a little wire at the bottom to keep the wick in place. I often hose down the patio and the wicks would move around.

This was a trumpet vine that lost most of its leaves upon transplanting. However, it is starting to leaf out again now all over.



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Thanks for sharing. I especially love the picture of the Japanese Maple.


    Bookmark   April 26, 2011 at 1:02AM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Best luck, Bill. Looks like you've been very ambitious! Good job!


    Bookmark   April 26, 2011 at 10:14AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Thanks for the update.


    Bookmark   April 26, 2011 at 5:46PM
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Great pics! I've only done a few so far, but I think I will do my fuchsias after I've seen yours.
What bark product are you using?


    Bookmark   April 26, 2011 at 6:55PM
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Thanks everyone else for the encouragement.

Al, per an earlier thread on the gritty "FAQ", I've started a side project where I am going back through all 13 container soil threads and tallying up what the most asked questions are for you. It will take me a little while but it is the least I can do considering how much you have given the community.

Suzie, I have a lot of fuchsia's in the gritty mix now. I've found that the new fuchsias that you get in the nursery handle the transplant much better then the older fuchsia's.

If you have established fuchsia's you may want to do a partial transplant where you keep the old soil on a few pie slices of the overall rootball. Otherwise if you go full bare root, they'll probably be fine but may drop their leaves.

This is one of my fucshia's from an early transplant that dropped all of its leaves but then started releafing out a few months later:

Original form before gritty transplant

A few months later, lost leaves but buds just starting to come out.

Doing great now.

As far as the bark, I'm using 1/8" - 1/4" (mini) orchid bark from Shasta Forest Products. It rocks. It's almost completely pre-screened, they sell it in a huge 3 cubic foot bag and it only cost $15 each. Below are the details from where I found it in my area.

- In a prevous post of Al's he talked about how Shasta Forest Products was one of the large manufacturers in our area for fir bark. They sell 3 cu ft bags of fir bark in the perfect size "1/8" - 1/4")
- I called Shasta and they told me Nurseymen's Exchange in half moon bay carried the product.
- Nurseymen's Exhange (2651 North Cabrillo Highway, Half Moon Bay, CA 94019, 650-726-6361)
- 3' Orchid Bark (1/8" - 1/4") (Mini)
- Note, Nurseymen's Exhange is a massive complex, when you pull in go up a little and to the right and park in the customer parking section. I think this place is for wholesalers but they did sell me.
- 3 cu feet for $15 each.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   April 26, 2011 at 8:22PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Thanks (on the FAQs) Bill. Great find on the bark, too - exactly what I use, but I have to drive all the way from mid-MI to CHI to get it! ;-) I usually do buy all I can get in a full size pick-up though (20 bags).


    Bookmark   April 27, 2011 at 12:30AM
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