Epsom Substitute For Dolomite Lime

Discussion in 'Growing Organic Marijuana' started by genghiskgro, Jun 19, 2013.

  1. Hey GC,
    I know that there are probably a bunch of threads but just kind of wanted to address before i go to work.
    I just wanted to know if i could just use 1/2 cup to a cup of epsom salt alone for ph buffer instead of dolomite into my 7.5 gallon mixture?
    I only ask because resourcing eggshells at this point would take too long although I am in the process.
    And or if i could cut with fast acting gypsum sold at Lowes and Home Depot.
    Thanks for the input and happy growing

  2. No and no. Epsom salts are sulfur + magnesium; gypsum (calcium + sulfur) won't alter your ph but will provide a short term source of calcium.
    Source some oyster shell powder or agricultural lime (CaCO3) for calcium needs. Or just work with dolomite if that's what you have on hand.
    I used oyster shell flour and crab shell meal in my soil mix, for short and long term calcium needs. I simply topdress a bit in every now and then, but mostly for pest management (chitanase enzyme) rather than calcium.
  3. #3 genghiskgro, Jun 19, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 19, 2013
    Thanks Gimik,
    But if that is the case then a couple more question arise
    I have already bought garden lime at lowes from Austinville Limestone and here is there recipe please tell me if you think this is good garden lime for organics I'm already in the process of growing two, and I'm running into problems as of right now that seem to be getting better but I was trying to do deduce the problem to either shitty lime, or acidic soil from unbalanced teas.
    But looking into getting oyster shell powder and crab meal but just can't source it around here but found a pretty good website online.
    10 mesh 100%
    20 mesh 100%
    40 mesh 95%
    50 mesh 90%
    60 mesh 88%
    100 mesh 80%
    CHEMICAL ANALYSIS Content by Weight
    Calcium (Ca) 20.0%
    Magnesium (Mg) 11.5%
    Calcium Oxide (CaO) 28.0%
    Magnesium Oxide (MgO) 19.1%
    Calcium Carbonate (CaCO3 50.0%
    Magnesium Carbonate (MgCO3)40.0%
    Calcium Carbonate Equivalent (CCE) 97.6%
    Effective Neutralizing Power (ENP) 1839 lbs. per ton
    Effective Neutralizing Value (ENV) 89.0%
    Total Neutralizing Power (TNP) 97.0%
    Relative Neutralizing Value (RNV) 95.0%
    Agricultural Liming Materials 
    Classification Fine Pulverized
    CAS# 16389-88-1
    Moisture Content <1%
    This product requires 1844 lbs. to equal one ton of standard 
    liming material (with CCE of 90%).
    Happy growing and thanks ahead of time
  4. #4 GiMiK, Jun 19, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 19, 2013
    50 lb sack of crab shell meal for a decent price here.
    The single most important attribute in a soil mix is "humus", or a source of decomposed organic matter that is degraded so far as to become stable.
    For practical usage of the term, refer to vermicompost and/or compost that has been matured past the point of recognizing any material used to make the pile. This is our source of "humus" even though it is most likely still in the active phase of decomposition.
    Start there; ask yourself if your source of "humus" is of quality (diversity of life forms and organic matter) and whether or not you have enough in your mix. My own mix suffered a bit until I added more "humus".
    If you wouldn't mind listing your mix, I'll try helping you with what little I know.
  5. #5 genghiskgro, Jun 19, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 19, 2013
    Thanks again GIMIK and this is actually quite helpful but my soil mix is as follows:
    -1/3 part spag peat moss (not hydrated before mixing I just kind of broke it up but i read somewhere can't remember right now that it should be pre soaked before mixed and i most certainly didn't do that.
    -1/3 part Wiggle worm EWC I know I know but i haven't set up my worm bins yet
    -1:1 aeration/retention with vermiculite and perlite
    1 1/2 cups of kelp meal epsoma
    1 cup of epsoma plant tone
    1/2 cup of powdered oyster shells(homemade)
    3 cups of Azomite
    Just found a source of oyster shells for DIRT cheap! just got five lbs or so for a dollar, but the only downside is i have to break it up myself was going to use a 1/2 cup or 1 cup of that as my calcium carbonate substitute. any recommendations welcome as to the best way to pulverize them.
    --Should also mention i have homemade fish hydrolysates, dandelion stew/fpe I guess, And LAB culture, and going to be ordering powdered aloe very soon do you think I should get the 200x concentration figured I might as well get the one that is most effectively concentrated i mean .5 of a gram makes a gallon from this website:
    --Last question the same place that sells the dirt cheap shells i was talking about earlier also sells mushroom compost, organic mix, etc etc in bulk and fresh do you think i should maybe invest in that instead of the wiggle worms or even cut the wiggles with the fresh mushroom compost? Just been hearing pretty good things about mushroom compost, might also invest in the castings they have there, they aren't alive but are probably just from a more viable source....
    Also any additions, recommendations, etc etc welcome and thanks for the input 
    Happy growing
  6. #6 GiMiK, Jun 20, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 20, 2013
    If you're in need of "better" (I don't trust WW's quality personally) vermicompost, I'd take a look at these links. Here's the site I sourced mine through for my first mix, though the second link looks to be of better quality vermicompost for a bit less money.
    Ask the people from the place selling the shells what they use for bedding/"food" in their bins. If they provide materials other than just cardboard and grass clippings....you're good to go until you make your own. (imo)
     I didn't look into it too much as I don't have a source locally, though IIRC there tends to be issues with residual chemicals in mushroom compost depending on the source. I'd ask them about it. Again, I don't/haven't used any before, so I'm just working based on discussions I've read from people who have experience with it.
    On the subject of  freeze dried aloe vera, you might want to source the 200x strength powder...more bang for your buck. Great find though, the whole aloe approach thing. 
  7. #7 genghiskgro, Jun 21, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 21, 2013
    Thanks GIMIK, 
    Yeah i was a little skeptical of the compost most of the ladies there while cute and old didn't seem to know much more then me about the subjects I was trying to discuss with them.
    But thought about just investing in my own worm farm, once the time is right i suppose, but i figured the wiggle worm might not be bad(i have two bags might as well use before) i thought i would try to pre moisten to kick start possibly with some aloe water or just regular before top dress and or AACT.
    But I do have a couple more questions so please bare with me:
    --I just recently strained and retained some dandelion liquid slurry that i let sit in water for two weeks at about an ambient temp of 90 pretty much the whole time, thing is that i never stirred it not even once maybe a steep or two but honestly that wasn't till the end. It smelt horrible but did have mold growing out the yin yang. Before letting it sit I I I hit it with some LAB culture, my question is do you think it would be okay to use? I mason jarred the liquid up and have yet to use it but am currently brewing an AACT with just casting and 1/4 tsp kelp. And or at what ratio i was thinking another 1/4 tsp.
    --Second question i just recently brewed up home fish hydrolysates and ph tested it and it was running at a 4 or lower and isn't really giving off a fishy smell but im not really picking up a vinegar smell either I just kind of smell the molasses, keep in mind i only used the head and probably only about 2 parts water but ehh i was using distilled and didn't have that much at the time. But do you think that is ready I was just kind of taking into consideration less fish plus the lab breaking it down as well, but it really has only been sitting for 1 and a half weeks give or take, input would be appreciated.
    --Next question being do you think it would be more effective to use ZHO fungi spores and aloe concentrate drench of cubes and or just mix in general for them to sit in for 10 minutes to 30 minutes? I'm basically asking instead of using it at the transfer site put it in the water to make them soluble and active plus once you make that initial incision they would be laced all over the transfer spot?
    ---Last question being do you think that adding rice wash water to soil would be an effective thing to do I know there is buku bacteria and fungi building up and I just wondered if hitting the soil with that the bacteria and fungi hopefully already dominating the rhizosphere can get a little something to eat.
    Thanks for the input and help buddy
  8. #8 GiMiK, Jun 22, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 22, 2013
    At this point, it's mostly just try it and see. Instead of worrying so much about adding this or that, follow doodle's advice. Shore up your basic botany skills and experiment as you go after you nail the simple things down.
    I've only used 4 ACT's in over 6 months of using my soil, 3 of them within the first month of building the soil to help establish a healthy population of microorganisms. I'll post a few pics for proof in a few hours, but following sound soil science and simple gardening practices has helped me to grow some beautiful, healthy cannabis plants.
    1. Not confidant enough to answer this without sounding ignorant.
    2. IIRC the PH should be around 2.8 or so before adding a preservative (ie citric acid) to arrest fermentation. I have not done this myself yet, as I just bury my fish guts/heads after spraying a lacto bacillus culture.
    3. ZHO? Never read that acronym. Are you referring to arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi being used during transplanting or something else entirely? I just take my cuttings, place them in a solution of fulvic acid, potassium silicate and water...though if I had aloe I'd use that as well. I leave them in that solution for 10 - 30 minutes and then dip in VAM before I place the cuttings into my soil mix (or rapid rooters, w/e) and then put them into the humidity dome. Mine are usually ready for transplant in roughly 7 days this way, though I use 2" x 2" x 3" pots to start mine.
    4. Not confidant enough to answer this without sounding ignorant, though IMHO it should be safe.

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