Ready to plant, but still have a few questions
I have prepared Al's Gritty Mix according to my interpretation of the many threads on this subject. If it's ok, I'd like to list the steps I've taken, as well as those remaining.It would be most helpful if anyone would chime in where I've taken a wrong step or where there may be a better way to achieve a good mix.
So far, I've screened the fir bark, Turface and grit using 1/4"-1/8" screens. (I've read that the 1/8" screen can be replaced with a 1/16" one for Turface in order to make it go further ...right?) I've rinsed the Turface and grit and will be soaking all three parts in water overnight. (If I use pine bark instead of the fir, I can use 3/8"-1/8". Is this acceptable? I still can't find a 3/8" screen or sieve. If nothing else, I'll try pounding those pine bark pieces that are larger than 1/2" to get them smaller.)
Next I'll use drywall tape with an adhesive backing to cover the drain holes. I recall seeing a pic of 1/16" hardware cloth cut in a circle; it looked to be about 2" larger in diameter than that of the bottom of the container. It was placed in the bottom with the edges bent up to prevent the mix from escaping. Does this work as well as the tape? And would 1/16" be the right size for this?
I'd like to place a wick in the bottom; I've read that strands from a mophead would be fine. Am I correct in this?
The final step will be the mixing of the ingredients and the root pruning which, when I contemplate it, is terrifying!
(I have a question regarding "composted" pine bark and how to differentiate it from uncomposted but that can wait til later.)
Thanks so much.