Job offersmore »

Tweeting Growers

Last commentsmore »

Top 5 - yesterday

  • No news has been published yesterday.

Top 5 - last week

Top 5 - last month

Exchange ratesmore »

In-house sampling methods to monitor the growing media

Some of the most common problems in container production are associated with inadequate pH and EC levels in the growing media. Fortunately, many problems can be prevented by monitoring the growing media. Four in-house sampling methods are available to monitor pH and EC of container-grown plants in greenhouses:  Saturated media extract (SME), 1:2 Method, Squeeze Method and Pour-Thru.

Saturated media extract is the method commonly used in horticultural commercial labs. It is recommended for new batches of growing media, when sub-irrigating and for containers of any size. It can also be used for plugs, by collecting multiple samples. The downside of SME is that it is a destructive sampling method. The 1:2 method applications are similar to SME. However, the SME method is preferred over the 1:2 method because it is not affected by moisture variability or exact volume of the sample.

Pour-thru method is an excellent alternative to quickly monitor changes overtime. It is highly recommended for container production where it is possible to collect leachate and when using controlled release fertilizers. Plants irrigated with ebb-and-flood benches or flood floors tend to accumulate high level of salts on the top layer of the growing media. The pour-thru method may displace the salts to the bottom of the container and leach to the sample, providing inaccurate results. Therefore, avoid using pour-thru when sub-irrigating. Instead use SME or 1:2.

Plug squeeze is used for plugs or bedding plant flats.

Keep in mind that the reference numbers vary by method. For more information on interpretation of results go to:

Sample analysis cannot be better than the quality of the sample. Consistency on how, when and who collects the samples is essential to track changes in the growing media over time.

Source: e-Gro

Publication date: 2/7/2017



Other news in this sector:

6/4/2018 Jiffy Products Sri Lanka successfully EU Organic certified
5/21/2018 UK: Grants for peatlands restoration
5/16/2018 Oasis starts offering Rootcubes retail packs
4/12/2018 US (MA): Molds on the surface of growing media
4/9/2018 RHP explanatory video about potting
4/4/2018 International Peatland Society celebrates 50th anniversary with symposium
3/20/2018 "I tested my growing media, now what?"
2/19/2018 Peat moss: A sustainable component of growing media
2/13/2018 Biochar could replace unsustainable peat moss in greenhouse industry
1/26/2018 Take a peek in Kekkilä's production facility
1/26/2018 Local raw material provides alternative to coconut products
1/18/2018 Shakti Cocos B.V. is now an independent company
1/10/2018 US (MI): Managing substrate pH of soilless substrates
12/22/2017 Video: Phytosanitary clean peat for bulb packaging
12/12/2017 Substrate handling influences air porosity of substrates
11/29/2017 BrownGrow appoints Dr Mike Nichols as technical consultant
11/20/2017 Peat moss comes in many grades
11/2/2017 Peat and Growing medium markets: supply and demand
10/27/2017 Is all peat moss the same?
10/16/2017 US: Enroot Products ships first Ameri-Coco bagged coir


Leave a comment: (max. 500 characters)

  1. All comments which are not related to the article contents will be removed.
  2. All comments with non-related commercial content, will be removed.
  3. All comments with offensive language, will be removed.

  Display email address

  new code