Tomatoville® Gardening Forums


Notices

General discussion regarding the techniques and methods used to successfully grow tomato plants in containers.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old February 28, 2019   #1
greenthumbomaha
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Omaha Zone 5
Posts: 2,325
Default Growing in Bush Doctor Coco Loco

I've never grown in coir buckets outdoors, but it seems to get high marks here.

I have about 3.5 cu ft of this bush product, which was delivered wet and with moths, so using it for potting up inside was impossible. I wanted to avoid fungus gnats but got a whole bunch of other bugs instead. It was disgusting, and I have part of one bag covered up in the house and a full bag in the garage. The few plants that I started in this aren't doing well (onions & leeks) or didn't germinate at all. I started over with Wondersoil and everything is looking much better. I see everyone is adding a good amount of perlite to their coir, but this product contains a fair amount of big chunky chips already. Do I need to add anything else?



What is the best outdoor use of this product (that is legal in my state) obviously!. a. What vegetables are most adapted to growing in this medium (my water is highly alkaline so not as worried about ph as I probably should be.)

b. On hand I have several sizes of unused smart pots, 2 empty Earthboxes, 3 gal food safe buckets from the bakery, and a pair of 10 inch leftover hanging baskets. Sun pr part shade areas can host my jungle.



I won't be able to set up drip , but I have a hose spigot on the other side of the garden. Could use more than a little help with fertilizing whatever ends up growing in "the Bush:.


Still two feet of snow & ice packing down on the backyard.


- Lisa
greenthumbomaha is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 28, 2019   #2
Tomzhawaii
Tomatovillian™
 
Tomzhawaii's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Honolulu ,Hawaii
Posts: 241
Default

Aloha,
For me coco coir has been a true humbling ride. I found the 1st thing
I should have done was wash it. I found that G.H. has florakleen. It's a liquid flush for hydro users. Flush, rinse, repeat... I let it dry for a week and fluffed it up and off I went . In hind site, I could have gave it more time to dry. But I couldn't wait.
The deal is that salts or saline buildup in the coco, creates problems with uptake of nutrients to my plants. Once I did the flush this grow has been a huge difference.
The coir that I have is almost 3 yrs old. I just kept replanting , my bad. I should also tell you that I use hydroton (clay pebbles) and perlite. And due to many factors like weather, humidity , heat.etc.. some of my planting ideas do not work for Hawaii. But as far as coco coir I am a true believer. It is a great medium to use in containers.
Aloha and good luck.
Tom
Tomzhawaii is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 28, 2019   #3
greenthumbomaha
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Omaha Zone 5
Posts: 2,325
Default

Obviously the bales will go only so far, 6 -8 buckets?. Always experimenting like the others on here, I was thinking of splitting this between a few peppers and compact indet tomatoes uning 3 gal bakery icing buckets. Another option which is sounding more appealing would be trialing the newer releases of the dwarf project and using the coco exclusively for that. Or exclusively for ???. Is there something else that grows extremely well in coir? (Again, legal in my state please, not interested in prison gardens or wearing orange). I'm leaning towards the dwarf project since its been a few years, so any info on care for these in particular would be appreciated.



Once summer finally arives here, my growing climate may not be that different from yours Tom. It gets humid, and stays that way at night , and we have bucket rainfalls. On the flip side we can go weeks without rain, but I can remedy that.



- Lisa
greenthumbomaha is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 1, 2019   #4
HudsonValley
Tomatovillian™
 
HudsonValley's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: Hudson Valley, NY, Zone 6a
Posts: 612
Default

I use Coco Loco once, when I couldn't get "Just Coir" (Black Gold brand) to germinate my hot peppers; I cannot get hot peppers to germinate in the peat mixes sold around here! I put Coco Loco into several containers and grew peppers and eggplants in them. I did have to feed the peppers with Epsom salt to get heat; your mileage may vary.



FYI - I also tried Lucky Dog K9 Kube, a peat moss blend; like Coco Loco, it's made by Fox Farms. I don't plan to repurchase either. They are very fluffy and compact a lot over the course of the season. On the other hand, they drain very well.



My Coco Loco didn't come with bugs, thankfully. WonderSoil is awesome stuff, but far too expensive for me to buy regularly. Good luck!
HudsonValley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 1, 2019   #5
PlainJane
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: North Florida
Posts: 927
Default

I use Coco Loco for seed starting (and like it) but not general growing. I’m not sure it has enough heft unless you mix it with pine bark fines or something else.

My 5-1-1 formula was made with coir instead of peat but I used the ‘chips-n-fiber’ mix, again to give plenty of volume.
PlainJane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 1, 2019   #6
shatbox
Tomatovillian™
 
shatbox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Los Angeles County, CA
Posts: 223
Default

@tomz +1 for washing, though I bet since the bag is loose fill and from a good source it's already been washed well. I've bought tons of compressed bricks from all over that leave sand and salt after getting rinsed through a collander a couple times.



I would add peralite. I think that's where I went wrong . Coco is deceiving; my mantra is if I think it's wet, it's too wet. Those chunks hold a lot of water.



Spread it and dry it out then pot it. And post pics!
shatbox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 1, 2019   #7
Tomzhawaii
Tomatovillian™
 
Tomzhawaii's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Honolulu ,Hawaii
Posts: 241
Default Finally

Mine is" roots organics " from aurora innovations. It is compressed. No stems, no seeds, no sand either. It says rinsed and cleaned. My issue was using it over and not flushing it between each grow cycle.This season my tomatoes are doing better than ever. Aloha
Attached Images
File Type: jpg IMG_0457.JPG (117.9 KB, 81 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_0463.JPG (127.3 KB, 80 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_0473.JPG (145.5 KB, 81 views)
Tomzhawaii is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 2, 2019   #8
greenthumbomaha
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Omaha Zone 5
Posts: 2,325
Default

The Coco Loco is washed three times, and with the downpours we get , any further washing needs should be completely taken care of. It is a night and day difference from the Wondersoil, literally. The CL is heavy and black, even with their generous inclusion of large chunks of perlite.

I do agree that the Wondersoil needs to be beefed up after a few weeks of use. Last year I had
grand illusions of using it to pot up and be free of fungus gnats, but after a few weeks it just compacted and stayed too wet. I ended up repotting again in peaty regular mix. It is definitely my first choice for germinating peppers, and worth a few bucks to avoid wasting time starting peppers over.

I'm not getting much of a feel of confidence using this outdoors in containers in a potentially rainy year. If I were to go this route since I'm inundated with the stuff, flip a coin for pine bark or perlite as an addition. And what granular fertilizer would work in coir?

- Lisa
greenthumbomaha is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 26, 2019   #9
PlainJane
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: North Florida
Posts: 927
Default

Lisa, I would mix the Coco Loco with pine bark fines if you can get them. (Mine come from a local stone yard, of all places.)
For a wheelbarrow’s worth of CL and PBF I would mix in a cup of lime, about the same Epsom salts, and 2 cups of a dry veggie fert. (I use TTF’s dry formula). Let that settle for a week or 2 before planting if you can.
- Joyce
PlainJane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 28, 2019   #10
brismith70
Tomatovillian™
 
brismith70's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Cambridge, MA
Posts: 70
Default

Most coco based products are washed in salt water so removing those salts is paramount. Make sure to rinse it several times. Also, keep in mind that coco is inert and used by hydroponics growers for just this reason. So, this means that you have to add nutrients to it or to your feeding solution. Most hydroponics growers pre-charge the coco with a Cal-Mag and fertilizer, letting it dry out a bit before transplanting.
brismith70 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 07:17 AM.


★ Tomatoville® is a registered trademark of Commerce Holdings, LLC ★ All Content ©2019 Commerce Holdings, LLC ★