hydroculture pots with medium other than clay?

odyssey3(7 noVA)November 1, 2003

Hi all,

Ths is my first time on this forum. I came over here because I would like to try hydroculture pots with a few of my houseplants. I saw some at interiorwatergardens.com, but dislike the terra-cotta colored clay growing medium. I hate the color of terra-cotta. Are there any other kinds of hydroculture pots that would contain another medium? Is there another medium I could swap out for the clay if bought these pots from interiorwatergardens?



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tailwheel(z9 CALIF)

I use #3 perlite. It's white and about 1/4 to 3/8 inch in size. It has good moisture retention. You may have trouble finding it unless you go to a greenhouse supplier. Most of the bagged perlite sold in stores is smaller sized grains.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2003 at 10:17AM
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You could probably use something like aquarium gravel if you kept the water level up pretty high. Or just top dress the terra cotta with gravel or moss.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2003 at 3:08PM
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mycarbumps(Zone 6b E.TN)

i use pea gravel but lava rocks wil work too.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2003 at 2:07PM
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Pumice would be the best choice because it is cheap, and heavier than perlite. My orchids and orange love it!

    Bookmark   October 31, 2004 at 1:23AM
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There must be 20 different kinds of media, each with its proponents.

There are many different colors and you can probably have designer media if you are willing to pay for it.

Here is a link that might be useful: Various media

    Bookmark   October 31, 2004 at 8:34AM
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Do a search in this forum for MEDIA. Baci has a very nice summary on Media types.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2004 at 12:08AM
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adrianag(AL z7)

If you want a media that looks like soil but wicks well look into "Soil Conitioner" available in 40# bags for $2-4 at Lowes and Home Depot. It is "pine fines", the siftings from making pine nuggests, bark and mulch.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2004 at 8:29AM
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I've placed on top of the expaned clay in some of my pots different coloured stones to hide the clay. You can get it at most garden centres or you can ask the people at purlec hydroculture if they have any.

Here is a link that might be useful: Purlec Hydroculture

    Bookmark   March 31, 2005 at 6:25PM
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hydro4me(z5 IN)

I just want to say thanks to Willard for the media link. I actually work on the wholesale end of this company. Getting paid to garden hydro and sell it to garden centers across the states. The discount on supplies is very helpful for trying out different media and supporting my gardening habit. I can tell you that the coir, silica stone, and Foxfarm's Big & Chunky perlite all work great as alternatives to terra cotta hydroton balls. The silica stone is white and looks great, with the exception of some surface algae at times it keeps roots healthy white.


    Bookmark   April 1, 2005 at 12:45PM
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Media can be heavy, so local resources would save you shipping costs. If you are looking for bulk Perlite & Vermiculite, you can get it for about $12.00/4 cubic ft at some of the chain hardware stores. They will also have decorative stones, as some above suggested at cheaper rates. Your local hydro stores are also good sources for some forms of media. If you are willing to experiment, you could also find some materials at the dollar stores.
You can also top some plants with rocks. I have had some success with Quartz & petrified wood. Some rocks leach minerals, which can interact with the nutrient, so it depends on the rock.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2005 at 10:06AM
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i think media types are probably infinite. some people grow on cypress mulch, sawdust, sand, shagnum moss, brick chips, blends of items you name it. differant medias will all have differant charachteristics some effect ph such as rock wool. each media will have it's own water retention and drainage properties as well as weight etc. perlite is an excellent choice as to moisture retention and drainage is quite light for houseplants but being lighter than water would float in a flood and drain unit so it goes. clay is hard to beat for moisture and air properties as well as being easily sterilized and recycled. maybe you could just cover the clay with pretty colored marbels or glass stones from the craft retailers or lava rock in a color you like. If you buy a premade unit and change media type you may have to adjust the operating procedures.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2005 at 6:59AM
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