Coir bricks

bonniepunch(USDAz4 AgCanz5a)February 28, 2007

What do you do?

I finally found some. I plan on using it in place of peat for my seeds, but I'm not sure how to go about using it. Usually I mix up my peat, vermiculite and perlite in a big bin and put this mix into my newspaper pots as is - dry. Then I water it and add the seeds.

This coir expands like crazy when it gets wet, right? So I don't want to put it into a newspaper pot and then wet it - I assume the pot will burst? The package says to add a gallon and a half of water to the brick - will this make it saturated, slightly damp, or somewhere in between? Do I have to use it all up right away, or can I bag up what I'm not using?

BP

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peatpod(Z5b Ontario)

Hi Bonnie .. I have used the bricks in the past but never to start seeds. I have broken up the brick and just slowly added the water as the coir expanded. It does expand quite a bit and I tend to use it in the large outdoor planters with my Taro and Brugs .. just go slow on how much water you add and only mix up what you are going to use. I found it got pretty stinky if I kept the extra.

Laura

    Bookmark   March 1, 2007 at 10:29PM
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bonniepunch(USDAz4 AgCanz5a)

I guess I'll find out how good it is for seed starting!

How did you break up the bricks? I cut one of the coarser ones in half with a saw (it was that hard!) and soaked that, but for the finer ones I just plunked the whole thing in the water. I'll use several of them up so the one I did won't get a chance to go bad, but I'll have to remember not to bag up any damp leftovers - keeping it in a open container should keep it from getting stinky :-)

I'm trying to really get away from using peat, but I've been having a devil of a time finding these bricks!

BP

    Bookmark   March 2, 2007 at 6:32PM
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peatpod(Z5b Ontario)

Hi Bonnie .. I used an old electric knife .. it took a little bit but I made it though ... also a pruning saw or the drywall saws work well too :o)

    Bookmark   March 3, 2007 at 1:07AM
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judith5bmontreal

Hi Bonnie,

I have also used it for my outdoor pots and hanging baskets; seemed to work well. I haven't tried it for seeds either. I usually use Ultra Pro-Mix for them. I just dump the bricks in one of those big plastic storage bins, add the warm water and mush it up, and it is pretty hard to break up. It's a lot more work than just using the bagged stuff. I also had to lug the hot water from the house outside to the bin every time, and that was a bit of a pain, but I ordered more from Lee Valley for this spring, so I guess I'm a sucker for punishment LOL
Judith

    Bookmark   March 4, 2007 at 7:22PM
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peatpod(Z5b Ontario)

Oh Bonnie I almost forgot .. dont let the coir dry out.

Laura

    Bookmark   March 5, 2007 at 6:08PM
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bonniepunch(USDAz4 AgCanz5a)

Laura - that makes sense. I guess one would have serious shrinkage problems if it dried out!

Judith - what brand did you use? I bought 'coco-tek' (or something like that) and they did not require warm water. I used cold from the tap (darn cold this time of year!), and it puffed up right away. They were easy as pie - well, the one I cut in half was tough to cut, but the other was no trouble to prepare at all. Both soaked up the water like a sponge.

BP

    Bookmark   March 5, 2007 at 7:29PM
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judith5bmontreal

Hi Bonnie,
I just ordered the ones that Lee Valley sells - I haven't seen them in the stores around here before. Where did you get yours? It would be a lot easier just to use cold water, that's for sure. Thanks,
Judith

    Bookmark   March 5, 2007 at 8:39PM
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bonniepunch(USDAz4 AgCanz5a)

I bought them from a place downtown (Montreal). It is a little hole-in-the wall hydroponics store on Duluth. They sold three different sorts (a fine, medium and coarse sort - I bought the fine and medium ones) and all were $4.50 or so each. I suspect that's expensive, but I had been looking for awhile so I just grabbed some. One brick made a good 8-10 litres of stuff once expanded - it is a little bit less than I would have paid for the same volume of peat, so I didn't feel ripped off. I will be going out to Jardin Jasmin in Ville St. Laurent in a few weeks (when they get their bulbs in) and I plan to see if they carry them.

If you want to know the name of the store, I'll have to pass by to get it. But if you're in the area and want to take a look, it is on the south side of Duluth, on a corner, about three blocks east of St. Laurent blvd. It looks like a temporary place, but they've been there awhile.

BP

    Bookmark   March 5, 2007 at 9:10PM
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ptmax(Zone 6b)

Last spring I used a product called Peat Eliminator bought from the Bargain Bin at Zehr's. I think I paid $0.50 cents each so I bought 4 bricks.It is a coir brick you add water to and it expands. I found it to be very heavy and used it in outdoor pots as a soil additive only. I found it difficult to work with and probably won't buy it again.PM

    Bookmark   March 6, 2007 at 8:20AM
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jroot(5A Ont. Canada (near Guelph))

I buy it by the case. When I need it, then I put one in the bottom of a large pail. I add water according to directions, let it sit for a while, and then get my soil mixer / auger ( which I purchased at Canada Bloom). If I have some potting soil, or sterilized soil lying around, I'll also add that to the mix.

Those who warn about letting it dry out are absolutely right.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2007 at 10:35AM
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judith5bmontreal

Hi Bonnie,

I think I have the address of that Hydroponic place on Duluth on a paper somewhere!(I know which pile it's in, will find it later). I had called McDonald College for a source for organics (alfalfa, cottonseed meal, fish meal, etc) and they emailed me a list of places (all Hydroponics stores, by the way) - the Duluth place was on the list. Next time I have a day off, I will be taking a drive to check out some of them. I also found a couple of places that might carry alfalfa (for my roses) not far from where I live. I will have to call first. I don't drive too far, so not ready to make a long trip to a country feed and grain store for it. Anyway, I sometimes go to Duluth with friends for the restaurants, so maybe I can pick up the bricks then. Thanks,
Judith

    Bookmark   March 7, 2007 at 9:50PM
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gardencoir

Hello!!! There:

I have several hundred Coir Bricks in my garage - I was competing with several other vendors to supply Coir bricks/bales to Scotts Lawn Products in Marysville, Ohio. I have a steady access to this 'wonder growing media' straight from India. If you've seen at the various Internet sites - they sell for an average of $2.50/Brick - I can sell them at just $2.00 a piece if you take a minimum of 500 bricks at a time or $2.25 if less than 500 bricks (All shipping charges will be passed on to the customer) Â Drop me a line if there is an interest and I can call you. Since I have access to the product from India, I can do an on-going supply if there is enough demand from users of the product in the US. People in this country are not really aware of a product this good - The nurseries I talked with here in Ohio haven't even heard of the Coir Bricks as a growing media.

Regards
Garden Coir

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 12:20PM
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