MG potting soil in comparison

bjdurham(z7a GA)July 5, 2013

One of these plants is not like the others. :)

I thought I was finished planting for the season but decided to buy 4 more padrons from the farmers market about 3 weeks ago (the front 4 plants in the light gray pots). All 4 were identical - small and yellow.

I used up the last of a bag of MG brand potting soil in one pot and bought another national brand with time-released fertilizer for the other 3. We've had 9 weeks of rain and overcast weather, and I've rotated the plants. The plants are under the dripline of a 100-foot white oak and can only hope for 2 hours of sun when the sun eventually comes out.

All things being equal, i see a big difference in height, width, and color in the one plant. If the weather ever dries up a little, I'll fertilize the small ones when I fertilize the container flowers, and they'll green up, but I thought you might want to see the difference.

I hesitate to mention the other brand of soil in case the other 3 peppers are actually a different variety. At the market, just the flats were labeled not the individual pots.

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Yep, definitely a difference. Would have been better to have two of each or even three of each just in case something like an off variety did get mixed in or some other random issue. However, from your non-scientific experiment, it does look like the MG is doing better than the others. It is equally surprising in that it is nearly 100% peat which doesn't normally do well in excessively wet conditions. Of course, I am sure the "other national brand" is equally comprised of peat. Several people on this forum grow with the basic MG potting mix in containers and do just fine with it. Keep us posted on how things progress.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2013 at 2:16PM
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DMForcier(8 DFW)

FWIW, I used MGMC almost exclusively the last couple years and was generally quite happy with it one I learned to water conservatively. (This year I'm in 5:1:1.)

By comparing reports, MGMC seems to vary somewhat by region. Mine is rather fluffy and though it retains water to some extent, in a large enough pot and summer temps (up to 100 last year) it balanced out fine. In the second year the built-in ferts lose their effectiveness so you have to treat it more like dirt and feed it.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2013 at 4:38PM
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bjdurham(z7a GA)

It must be the peat moss. The MG (not moisture control) was fluffy not peaty, but the other brand's website says it's peat moss and perlite.

Here's another pic from this morning. The smaller 3 plants (now on the right) have had 2 small doses of fertilizer. The sun has been out for 2 days!!, and I'll increase the fertilizer if the soil drys out.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2013 at 8:09AM
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I have a Dragon's Claw growing in MG potting soil. All my other peppers are in some form of 5-1-1.It's a beautiful plant and quite large. The only problem I've noticed is BER. I initially thought it was because we've had SO much rain. I've had a pepper or 2 suffer on most of my plants. The Dragon's Claw ,however, has had BER on every pepper. I think I've tossed about 10 peppers off of that plant. I'm only growing it in MG because my wife said I was insane for spending so much time assembling the 5-1-1 I use. She insisted that if I just put them in MG I wouldn't notice a difference. I was starting to believe her until I noticed all the peppers suffering from BER. I've harvested a pepper from my Douglah, Yellow Devil's Tongue, and Yellow Fatali, but not from the Dragon's Claw. Obviously I can't say with 100% certainty that the BER is only caused by the MG soil, but it does seem suspicious. Good Luck!


    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 10:27AM
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Tim: did you add lime to the MG? I think you're supposed to, but not sure.


    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 11:36AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Soils that hold too much moisture also impede a plant's ability to take up Calcium, an essential nutrient in preventing BER.


    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 11:56AM
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I use MG orchid mix and MG Organic choice but I always use bonemeal at the start of the season and as I pot up I add more. So it may be possible the type of MG you use and if you don't add additional calcium may cause BER. I've always used bonemeal so would not know 100% if MG itself would be the cause.


    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 12:23PM
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Yeah, I meant POTTING mixes/soils, in general. I think container gardeners, no matter the medium, try to get Ca into the mix in one way or another. Bone meal, Lime, gypsum et al.


    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 2:01PM
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I typically add dolomitic lime, bone meal, blood meal, and Osmocote to my 5-1-1. I honestly don't remember if I added anything to the MG or not.


    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 2:30PM
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