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Packed soil, need to loosen.

Discussion in 'Organic Growing' started by Munfy, Feb 24, 2013.

  1. I searched for this so hopefully im not making a repeating thread. Anyways, I was just wondering, ive packed my pots to much with dirt, and its clearly effecting the root growth of my plants, what I was wondering was what is a safe and effective way to loosen or break up my soil without causing to much stress to my plants or hurting the roots. I put them in 7 gallon pots from seed so I cant really transplant them.

    Thanks for the help!
  2. Hopefully you have learned the very important lesson of maintaining soil porosity. Never ever pack the soil medium in a growing container and always use larger chuck size perlite or similar to help avoid it in the future.

    Without transplanting the current container one thing you can attempt to do to break the soil up is to use a very slender resilent object that can withstand some torsion without snapping or breaking. Bamboo skewers work well as would anything in similar diameter. Insert the "skewer" (that is the reference) into the container and beging working the skewer in a circle fashion creating a hole in your container. Do this enough times and you can loosen the soil. Have you heard of spiking" plants with fertilizer? This is the prepatory step prior to doing so only you are using the technique to attempt to loosen the soil and get much needed oxygen to the root system as well as making the medium conducsive to new root growth.

    Be aware that everytime one touches the containerized plant and moves it the virbration that occurs will serve to compact the soil. The easiest defense agains compacted soil is to ensure a good tilth to your soil mix containing ammendments that will guard against compaction, and not move or otherwise handle your plants container as much as is feasible in an effort to avoid compaction.

    Use a skewer, a dowel, or anything similar than can withstand the pressure of your breaking up your soil manually. Do it correctly and you will not sustain any irrepairable damage to the root system.

    Good luck.
  3. I seem to have a similar problem with 1 plant rightnow. Thanks for the good idea DoodleBug.
  4. If you aren't using chemicals such as in nutes and whatnot earthworms are the way to go. But chemicals will kill them.

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