Problems with salt buildup.
I guess I am new and not new to this.lol. I have a large collection of Streptocarpus and African Violets that I have been wick watering for the last year(just found out this is passive hydroponics method?). Anyway I have been using a mix of 75% perlite to 25% peat and have been having fertilizer salt buildup especially at the top of the mix due to excess evaporation (I live in high desert Utah). Even with constant leaching monthly I am having terrible trouble trying to get it to leach from the perlite. This is leading to problems with plant growth i.e.. nutrient intake problems....and also I hate the peat breakdown and acidity problems dealing with that. I just started looking into different mediums to use and discovered that I was using a form of hydroponics....WOW. I didn't even know! What I would like to know is there a way or chemical or something that can help the process of leaching these salts from my medium? Is there a medium you would recommend using that would work better? Both plants I am growing have to have plenty of air to their roots. I was looking at buying some Hydroton Pebbles to try (I was also told you can find the "same" material cheaper as some sort of baseball field additive?). Any ideas greatly appreciated and I can't afford any other methods than wicking.