5-1-1 Mix and handling 2 dissimilar soils in one pot
On a post a while ago Al responded to this question "... if a plant has been grown in normal commercial potting soil for awhile, will it adapt well to this kind of mix?"
"It depends on how you treat it. If you take a plant with collapsed soil and place it in a larger pot with a fast soil, you'll have trouble, no matter what the soils are made from. With two dissimilar soils in the same pot, for a good part of the time, one will be too wet and the other too dry. But there are some things you can do to help remedy this. Ask if you're interested. "
I didn't see in further posts where anyone asked about this further and since I just made my first batch of 5-1-1 mix yesterday I am asking further on this issue. :-) I have about 6 small 'baby' plants(palm, dieffenbachia, philodendron, etc.) in small pots but the soil surrounding their roots was/is saturated. I pulled off as much potting soil as I could from around the roots(trying not to take off too many fragile roots...as these are young plants...unfortunately my Heptapleurum is dropping leaves and not looking good at all b/c many of it's roots were ripped off when I tried to get the mud-like potting soil off) and I put them in my 5-1-1 mix with just fine pine bark mulch and perlite. I didn't put in any peat/potting soil b/c these plants never dried out in over a week so I didn't want to give them too much of a water-retentive soil environment. I watered well yesterday with a lot of water draining from the pot. Today I looked at them and they 'felt' pretty dry down inside(I stuck my finger all the way down to the bottom almost...these are small pots) and watered again today BUT how will the root ball ever get any oxygen and dry out if I have to keep watering to keep the 5-1-1 mix moist?