Let’s figure out what a coconut substrate is. It is a relatively new growing medium, the main ingredient of which – coconut coir – was first used in this capacity in the eighties. Coira allows you to combine the sensation of growing in natural soil with the benefits of hydroponic growing (fast growth and high yields). It has proven to be a versatile environment with many benefits for different types of growth. More about substrate here https://420growradar.com/p/coco-nutrients/.
Some gardeners and growers add coir to their soil without understanding how to use it differently. It does not add to the clarity that coconut fibers are supplied in rigid dehydrated briquettes, and without the slightest instructions for use.
Coconut briquettes are a convenient and ergonomic way of transportation and storage: after mixing with water, one “brick” gives up to 8 liters of ready soil.
There are also coconut discs and “tablets”: the disc fits into round pots, you need to place it there and fill it with water. But what is this “sustainable” growing base made of?
Coconut coir is a fibrous part of the shell that has proven to be an excellent medium for growing cannabis. Recently, they have even pushed peat out of its rightful place as “the most popular soil for home gardening.”
Cocoon soil is more predictable:
- no surges in acidity,
- does not get salted,
- well aerated,
- free of parasites and pathogenic fungi,
- not prone to mold,
It does not need to be disinfected (although it is recommended “just in case” to treat the soil with special disinfecting agents).
Growing on coconut is a way to get healthy plants “organic” without any extra effort. Some gardeners and growers practice mixing cocoa soil with soil – for example, outdoors: this way you can improve the quality of natural soil, even clay, enrich it, and increase aeration.
You can use pure coconut soil: contrary to popular misconception, it, not soil, is the best substrate for indoor. Note the air permeability and moisture content of the coconut substrate (retains moisture 7 times its own weight).
How to prepare coconut substrate?
How to dilute the coconut substrate and how to use the soil obtained after cultivation?
A simple recipe: pour water according to the instructions, wait for swelling, rinse the wet mass 3-4 times (to remove excess salt and other accidental impurities). If there are no instructions, consider the approximate proportion: 1 kg of compressed and dehydrated fiber gives 15 liters of ready soil, while absorbing 7 liters of water.
How to soak a coconut substrate: Take a basin or bucket, pour a briquette (1 kg) with three liters of water and wait until it is completely absorbed. If dry lumps remain, gradually add water until the finished soil is moist and uniform.
How to store the coconut substrate if not the entire volume of the finished mass has been used? Let the remainder dry completely and store in a bag in a dry place, soak and use as needed.
Washing the coconut substrate is an optional step, but it is better not to skip it, especially if it is planned to use it in its pure form indoors, where the likelihood of accidental impurities is minimal.
How to rinse out the coconut substrate without getting dirty around everything? Experienced growers recommend:
- use an old cloth bag, a linen pillowcase, a worn T-shirt with a sewn collar and sleeves;
- put the dry briquette in a bag, pillowcase or T-shirt, and then in a basin;
- soak in a bowl with plenty of water;
- tie the hole with an elastic band and leave for a while – the first water will be dark;
- carefully drain the water and refill it (attention: the warmer the water, the more intensely it is colored, therefore it is recommended to rinse it not with cold, but with hot water, if possible);
- repeat 3-4 times until clean water.
This “how to dilute coconut substrate” method is more difficult than preparing according to the instructions. How to grow coconut substrate with less time, while killing random microorganisms or fungi that may have gotten during transportation and improper storage? Pour the briquette according to the “recipe” on the label, but with boiling water.
How to make coconut substrate: soil recipes
We figured out how to dilute the coconut substrate. You can use it in its pure form – it is already an excellent environment for plants (taking into account, of course, competent fertilization and care).
– Add soaked coco soil to natural soil when grown outdoors;
– Use coir discs as mulch;
– Mix in half with “flower” soil for seed germination and seedling growth;
Prepare a nutrient soil: a diluted briquette of 1 kg, 200 ml of liquid vermicompost (or liquid fertilizer based on bat guano), 5 liters of dry vermicompost, 3 liters of water.
Anchor the plant to coconut when growing hydroponically.
How to prepare coconut substrate for hemp growing?
A popular way is to mix three parts of the substrate with part of perlite or vermiculite (other proportions are popular) and sprinkle with nutrient-rich water. Agroperlite is a swollen volcanic material that provides normal air exchange in the soil, prevents caking and compaction performs the function of drainage, is able to absorb liquid (becoming four times heavier), and gradually release it. This creates a productive environment for healthy cannabis to grow.