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Old November 23, 2018   #1
greenthumbomaha
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Default Oasis Cubes

Doe anyone use Oasis (or Rockwell cubes) to start seeds for non-hydroponic growing?


Just looking for a change of routine and possibly a neater option than Jiffy for in between sowings. Most sites I glanced at are geared to hydro and mothers. I'd like advice for things that I am used to growing at this time. How does this material compare to the common use for these products?



- Lisa
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Old November 23, 2018   #2
SQWIBB
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I have, a few years back.
They hold a large amount of water.
I have had success with them when I first started growing starts from seeds.
I just didn't like planting them out in the rockwool.
So I would try and tear the rockwool a bit from the roots.
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Old November 24, 2018   #3
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Well nix that one!

- Lisa
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Old November 24, 2018   #4
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oasis and rockwool are two totally different products. Oasis is the green foam that you find in flower shops for fresh flower arrangements. rockwool is like a fiberglass mass. I am not saying it is fiberglass, just that it looks like fiberglass. I have no idea what it really is made out of.
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Old November 25, 2018   #5
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Oasis horticubes are all I use for seed starting.
Germination rates are very high, fungal problems are non existant.
Had endless trouble with other media for starting befor horticubes.
Rootcubes are for cuttings not seed starting.
Oasis is not the foam used in floral arrangements, it is quite different.
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Old November 25, 2018   #6
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Almost lost a whole season of transplants into rockwool.
I found it to be vile stuff.
It must be soaked in acidic solution to remove lime flux that is a by product of its manufacture.
Get it wrong and your plants will die.
Wear gloves and a respirator or you will regret the day you thought of using the stuff.
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Old November 25, 2018   #7
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Nematode:

How many cells/sheet do you use? 50, 162, 276?

Jeff
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Old November 26, 2018   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtjmartin View Post
Nematode:

How many cells/sheet do you use? 50, 162, 276?

Jeff
50, plants need the room unless you are transplanting them early.
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Old November 26, 2018   #9
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I had great germination with rockwool and never had an issue with growth, damping off, moisture retention or fungus/mold problems.
What I liked most about it was its ability to retain moisture for a long time without harming the plants

I did soak the rockwool in water with a bit of vinegar though.


What I did not like about Rockwool and When I stopped Hydro, I was afraid to plant in soil with the rockwool intact, not sure if it would hurt the plants that and the fact I didn't want Rockwool in my soil, my gut instinct was to not use it in non-hydro gardening.



Its also not a very environmentally friendly product and has a high PH, as far as being a carcinogen, it hasn't been proven either to be safe or unsafe.

















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Old November 26, 2018   #10
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I'm pretty sure the Oasis cubes are the same foam as the Florist Foam being an engineered hydrophilic foam.


This is from the Smithers-Oasis site under their environmental statement page.

OASIS Floral Foam MaxLife, our most popular product, now has enhanced biodegradability. It has been shown by ASTMD5511 to biodegrade 25 percent within 18 months in biologically active landfills.


What is ASTM D5511 - 18 Standard Test Method for Determining Anaerobic Biodegradation of Plastic Materials Under High-Solids Anaerobic-Digestion Conditions


From the MSDS, it is found to "NOT" be biodegradable.






Here's a snippet I found on the Oasis cubes, I found interesting




"Foam stored in stagnant or hot enclosures may result in off gassing of residual formaldehyde gas. Wash thoroughly after handling. Observe good personal and industrial hygiene procedures. When foam is soaked or used in water, some low levels of residual formaldehyde may accumulate in tub water. Repeated skin immersion in water containing formaldehyde has caused skin rashes, particularly in sensitive persons. It is recommended that impervious latex or chemical resistant gloves be worn and water tubs be emptied regularly."


And an MSDS about the Oasis cubes, but this is from Australia
https://docs.wixstatic.com/ugd/89820...7c476f79d2.pdf




This one is from USA
http://www.fdionline.net/fdi/public/..._Foam_2009.pdf



Smithers-Oasis site with MSDS

https://www.oasisfloral.com.au/mater...ty-data-sheets






Is it safe? That's a decision you will have to make on your own, a lot of times the MSDS sheets scare people to death.


Is it environmentally Friendly, IMHO, NO, for more reasons than it just not being Biodegradable that I wont get into.
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Old November 26, 2018   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greenthumbomaha View Post
Doe anyone use Oasis (or Rockwell cubes) to start seeds for non-hydroponic growing?


Just looking for a change of routine and possibly a neater option than Jiffy for in between sowings. Most sites I glanced at are geared to hydro and mothers. I'd like advice for things that I am used to growing at this time. How does this material compare to the common use for these products?



- Lisa
Have you seen the rapid rooter or Root riot products? I believe they are a peat based cube with some type of binder. Spongy material that soaks water well, I've used both that I mentioned and had no problems with germination on either. It was cool being able to lift the plugs and see the roots developing. What I did eventually struggle with is the plugs drying out rather quickly when the seedlings got bigger root systems, they just drank all the time. Soil gave me a slight buffer and retains moisture better and allowed more time between watering. From these I planted the entire things into solo cups, and eventually into the garden. Never an issue with the plugs not fully breaking down. In my experience they are a tidier option, and they do work. Having said all that, I did switch back to seeding stating mix this year. I too, just like to mix it up from time to time.
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Old November 26, 2018   #12
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My journey to researching plug format began when I met a local Daylily breeder and she starts her seeds in Rapid Rooters. She doesn't grow the volume of plants that I do, but I was going to buy a small pack for this purpose. My hydro store repacks things from bulk packages, and they always seemed drippy and gross. Perhaps they added too much water so the cubes don't dry out. The Daylily starts get really fibrous roots so I'll be watering even more than your did, hunt. I'm starting in mid December and will update when things get going. I practiced using regular peat with a common variety Daylily seed from Lowes and the germination is about 75%. She gets the same rate in the rooters.

Squibb, great pic as always, and healthy transplants too. But the environmental specs are gross - just no for me!

- Lisa
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Old November 26, 2018   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greenthumbomaha View Post
My journey to researching plug format began when I met a local Daylily breeder and she starts her seeds in Rapid Rooters. She doesn't grow the volume of plants that I do, but I was going to buy a small pack for this purpose. My hydro store repacks things from bulk packages, and they always seemed drippy and gross. Perhaps they added too much water so the cubes don't dry out. The Daylily starts get really fibrous roots so I'll be watering even more than your did, hunt. I'm starting in mid December and will update when things get going. I practiced using regular peat with a common variety Daylily seed from Lowes and the germination is about 75%. She gets the same rate in the rooters.

Squibb, great pic as always, and healthy transplants too. But the environmental specs are gross - just no for me!

- Lisa
My shops carry the 50 pack tray/plug combo as well as bags of extra plugs. Condensation isn't abnormal on the inside of package prior to opening, the plugs should be slightly damp when first opened, but definitely not dripping. Root Riot brand was very similar across the board but one was a few bucks cheaper, just cant remember which one. Good luck!
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Old November 26, 2018   #14
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I noticed there was something cheaper om homedepot.com with free ship to store. Have to check on the stove now but will look into all options. Thanks!

- Lisa
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