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Need advice:potting mix

Posted by GottaWeed 5b (My Page) on
Thu, Mar 21, 13 at 12:27

Hello all!

I am not new to gardening, but am new to seed starting. I have a mini-greenhouse in my basement that is heated and covered. In my excitement to begin this year's garden, I've made some mistakes that I am fixing, going much by information found here (thank you!), as well as a few other gardening sites.

My main problem, I think, is moisture/humidity. I started my seeds too early, and when I went for potting soil, could only find "garden" soil. Now my plants aren't doing as well as they should, and one of my planned fixes is to replant in better-draining potting mix. The problem is that when I went to my local store, they didn't have it out yet; I paid for it sight-unseen, and when I picked it up at the garden center, found out it is Miracle Gro Moisture Control. So much for my organic garden...

I'm wondering if I should go ahead and just use this soil, or should I take the time (and drive) to go get some organic potting mix? I really want my seedlings to thrive!

Thanks for any and all advice yoiu give!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Need advice:potting mix

Based on my personal experience with that particular mix, as well as several past discussions here and on other forums, I wouldn't use it for seed starting.

It works ok as a potting mix outside in really large containers for well developed plants but indoors or in small containers with young plants it keeps the soil too wet and that leads to all sorts of problems. Even the MG without moisture control or plain old inexpensive Jiffy Mix from Walmart works better.

So for your transplanting purposes it would depend on what size containers you will be using, how old the plants are, and how long before they can be transplanted to the garden? If you do use it you will have to monitor the soil moisture levels very carefully and only water when absolutely necessary.

What sources for potting mix do you have? Surely by now your big box stores and local nurseries have their mixes available.

Dave

PS: for future info the bags of garden soil say on the label "Not for use in Containers".


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RE: Need advice:potting mix

Thanks for the quick response. I think I already answered my own question, but just wanted someone else's perspective. I was lazy, and didn't want to take the time to drive, thinking I could get something that would work well locally (plus, I did tell the guy why I needed it...). So many lessons learned the hard way this year!

We have a great organic garden center that's a bit of a drive, but after all my efforts, will be worth the time and effort to visit.

I'll hang on to the MG; I plan to have some big pots for my patio this year.

Thanks again!

I just checked the bag, and you're right: the warning is there...in tiny lettering!


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