kumquat: what soil should i use?

rubyjchangSeptember 16, 2013

Hi everyone,

I am a newbie who just ordered a 3 year old Fukushu kumquat from Four Seasons (I have been researching a WHOLE lot on Gardenweb, and EVERYBODY recommended Four Seasons!!!).

All my other plants (NON-citrus) are in the Gritty Mix. But I have heard good and bad things about the Gritty Mix for citrus. So I am a bit scared. Can anybody offer any tips/ideas about what mix to use for my new kumquat (that is to be arrived next week).

Could I use Miracle Grow Cactus/Citrus mix and add a bunch of bark/granite pieces/perlite to it?

Can I use the Gritty Mix? (I am worried about the repotting process too...barerooting a big citrus tree is very scary to a newbie like me).

ANY TIPS ARE GREATLY GREATLY GREATLY APPRECIATED!!! (poor college student here don't want to loose an expensive citrus tree). Pretty pretty please give some tips!

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Anything well draining...

An ultimate would be a mix made of 5 parts bark, 1 part peat, and one part perlite..Something close to it if you can understand the concept of it...

Yes the gritty can be challenging for newbies, but worth every effort..But if you want to get use to understanding the concepts of fast draining mixes, I really think you will get use to the ease of the mix I recommended above and have a first success...
Maybe you can eventually graduate to the gritty one..

Fafard mixes heavy weight too...

Great to have you!


    Bookmark   September 16, 2013 at 9:49PM
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Hi Mike!

Thank you for your tips! I know that the 511 requires dolomite lime (which I lack), and prefers partially composted pine bark (...I only have Reptibark-which is uncomposted), and perlite (that should be screened right? I kept on searching through the container gardening forum for the ORIGINAL 511 mix ingredients but some of them weren't super clear as to bark size, perlite size...Al's 511 is so popular that everyone is talking about the 511 and Gritty but it is not super easy to find all the ingredient in detail together all at once).

I do have the gritty mix ingredients on hand (since ALL of my other plants are in the Gritty Mix). I just really don't have experience with barerooting citrus into the Gritty Mix, and I am scared to risk such a great quality tree from four winds. If I do decide to put it into the gritty, what size pot should I choose (the 3 year size from four winds), and what should I pay particular attention to with regard to kumquat bareroot potting?

Thank you for your help!!! I really appreciate it.


    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 10:51AM
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Hi Ruby, I've done kumquat in gritty mix, then moved it to 511 because it was a lot less heavy (arthritis). I thought that my trees acclimated faster to gritty mix to be honest, I liked it better and I miss it. But they do fine either way. You know about gritty, so you know to make sure there are no air holes around the roots. My trees are 3 year bare rooted from 4 Winds, I have good luck with trees in approximately 11 or 12 inch diameter pots, depth would be around 9-10" roughly. Whether gritty or 511, I water well once per day for 4 days, then every other day 2-3 times. Watch the leaves carefully. They'll tend to fold inward when water stressed and they'll be stressed in the beginning. You'll start to notice the leaves relaxing over time. If you see leaf folding getting worse, especially as you move into direct sun, water it. No intense sun at first, it will stress them. Start in shade, gradually move into Bright light then direct full sun at around the 12-14 day mark. This is what I do, hope it helps...

    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 8:34PM
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This will help you Ruby and hi Manderine:-)

Here is a link that might be useful: Mix ingredients for the 5.1.1 or gritty

    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 8:58PM
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Steve, Micro (6B ground, 5B roof)

My sweet lee tangerines and kumquats (meiwa and nagami) are planted in a mix consisting in volumetric parts 1 crushed bricks, 3 sand of varying grain size, 1 pine bark fines, 2 rotted leaf mulch. It was all free and drains fast. You can substitute the bricks with clay pot shards. The sand I found in the street gutter. The rotted leaves came from my compost pile. and the pine fine came from the kroger dumpster and the m5 gallon bucket came from a contractor throwing his empty 5 gallon paint bucket out.

Also transplanting is as simple as (check ,out the link below)

Here is a link that might be useful: https://plus.google.com/photos/111099372377958308731/albums/5869826671114565057/5920315434603073298?banner=pwa&pid=5920315434603073298&oid=111099372377958308731

    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 9:05PM
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Thank you all for the tips!!! I will post progress images! I think I will go with the Gritty Mix!

    Bookmark   September 18, 2013 at 12:42PM
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