Making Your Own Organic Potting Mix

As it was a beautiful sunny day in Sydney, I decided to spend the day in the garden, re potting some pot plants.  Lately I have been making my own organic potting mix, which I learnt how to do from a free City of Sydney Council, Live Green Workshop.

My Aloe Vera plant's new home. Finished results.

To make good potting soil, you  need to include three elements; water, air and nutrients.  Here are my ingredients for making organic potting mix that has all three of these elements:

1) Water – Coconut fibre

2) Air – Sand

3) Nutrients  – Humus  (can be compost or castings from a worm farm or even EM Bokashi treated dog poo.  NOTE if using dog poo in the recipe, it is well advised not to use the potting mix for edible plants, like fruit, veggies and herbs).

Let me explain in more detail:

Purchase organic compressed coconut bricks from nurseries or hardware. Make sure they are organic!

Organic, compressed, coconut fibre

Soak the coconut bricks in water for at least 15 minutes, so the compressed brick will separate and expand.

Place organic, compressed coconut fibre into a bucket of water

If like me you do not have a wheelbarrow (for mixing the potting soil), lay a tarpaulin on the ground.  Add the bucket of separated and wet coconut fibre onto the tarp.

Use a tarp to mix your organic potting mix, if you do not own a wheelbarrow

Now add the sand (in the same quantity as the coconut fibre).

Sand is an important ingredient in creating your own organic potting mix as it provides air

Now add the nutrients.  As I am not re planting edible plants like fruit, veggies or herbs today, I will use my EM Bokashi treated dog poo.  Again in the same quantity as the sand and coconut fibre (all three parts equal in quantity).

Dog poo treated / coated with EM Bokashi powder makes good nutrients in organic potting mixture for non edible plants

Mix well together.

Mix the coconut fibre, sand and dog poo coated with EM bokashi powder together on a tarp

Now to pot your plant (just as normal).  Using one of my  garden pot ‘finds’ – I picked this garden pot up just recently from the side of the road.  Saved it from going to land fill.

Using a garden pot that I picked up from the side of the road.  Saved from landfill.

As you can see this Aloe Vera plant is overgrown and needing a bigger garden pot.

Overgrown Aloe Vera Plant - needing re planting

And Walla……..the finished results.

My Aloe Vera plant's new home.  Finished results.

Here is my mint that I replanted a month ago.  As mint is an edible plant, I used worm castings as the nutrients in my organic potting mixture.  The mint has doubled in sized since I planted it!

Mint re planted one month ago has now doubled in size.

Why is dog poo so interesting?

If you take a sneak peak at the statistics of each individual post on my website you will discover something a little strange.

 

The overall top posts in regards to how many hits (different from the daily top posts which I display on the left hand side) are all to do with dog poo!  Funny hey?!?

 

It is been awhile so here is an update on our household dog poo and what we do to recycle it.

 

Currently I am scoping up the poo and placing inside a bucket with a lid.  I do this daily then sprinkle ‘EM Bokashi’ over the top (about a handful).  For more information on why I am doing this please read ‘what to do with dog poo’ post.

 

Since I have been doing this we have noticed that there is no really bad smell in the bucket.  The previous bad smell has been replaced with a vinaigrette type fragrance.  The bucket is kept outside which used to attracted lots of flies (even with the lid on) but now we are adding ‘EM Bokashi’ the files are not flying around the bucket anymore.

 

Very soon I plan to burry the dog waste in the large plant pots around our home.

 

As regular readers will know, we live in the inner city of Sydney.  We are lucky to have a reasonably large back courtyard (no grass) where the dogs are kept.  This means we are able to have large pots.  But what if you live in a unit with no real option of burring dog waste?

 

I think I have finally come up with a solution (feel free to judge my thinking).  Try scoping up the doggie poo in those biodegradable doggie bags then sprinkle ‘EM Bokashi’ over the poop. 

 

Then tie the bag up tight so no air can get in, which will make it an anaerobic brake down process (without air).  Apparently ‘EM Bokashi’ neutralises the methane and hence is not emitted into the atmosphere if brake down is anaerobic

 

You then could burry the bags in a family or friend neighbour’s yard.  Or if have no other option then you could put into the garbage bin (because you will not be adding to the landfill methane problem).

 

I am really interested to know my readers thoughts on this one.  J

 

 


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