Perlite and Rooting Questions

love_the_yard(z9A Jax FL)May 20, 2013

1) How do you keep perlite from washing out the drainage holes in the bottom of rooting plastic or styrofoam cups? I made holes using a soldering iron tip and the holes are bigger than the perlite pieces. They wash right out the bottom. So I took some old window screen and cut circles that fit flat in the bottom of the cups, but, wow, labor-intensive. What is a better way to cut drainage holes? I'm thinking next time, maybe just make slices or very small holes using a box cutter?

2) Can perlite be reused?

3) What is the best way to transfer rooted cuttings from perlite to soil? I am new to rooting in perlite. In the past, I always used potting mix so if I was successful, the whole plug - mix and plant - were planted. I have never separated a rooted plant from the rooting mix. What is the best technique?

Thanks!
Carol

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
david52 Zone 6

If you have a spray bottle, spray the perlite first, it isn't as 'slippery' - with big bags, I use a watering can to dampen the whole top layer - and you don't breathe the dust.

You *could* reuse perlite for cuttings, but it isn't that expensive, and you'd avoid any chance of contaminating the next batch with any bacteria/fungus that had developed. I just 'recycle' it by mixing it in with the regular potting soil.

I gently tap out the roots and perlite, dumping the lot out on its side, gently lift out the rooted cuttings, and then swish them around in a container of water to knock off the excess perlite. A few pieces left don't matter - but the big clump can be an issue.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2013 at 5:41PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

I've always used either window screen or the plastic grid used for needle point to cover the holes. Labor intensive? How can something that takes a few seconds be labor intensive? The plastic grids will stay in place even with just perlite. No need to cut in circles....just squares that will fit over the holes.

I like to use perlite as a rooting medium.

This post was edited by rhizo_1 on Tue, May 21, 13 at 13:14

    Bookmark   May 21, 2013 at 1:13PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
love_the_yard(z9A Jax FL)

David, thanks so much for the help. I appreciate it!

Rhizo, well, I guess like everything "that takes a few seconds", it depends upon how many you have to do.

Carol

    Bookmark   May 22, 2013 at 9:28PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Speed up Plant Propagation!
This will not be needed for most plant propagation...
hummersteve
Moisture retaining but inert media for layering?
Hi all, Been poking around the garden forums reading...
horti2791
problem with carica papaya seedling survival
Hi I live in a temperate zone, have a large conservatory,...
marcyoung
Easy Propagation Chamber
I make a little propagation chamber that is so easy,...
little_dani
I'm Lazy--What can you root in plain old water???
Are there any perennials that you can just put in water...
love2weed
Sponsored Products
Hydrofarm Super Coarse Perlite Growing Media - GMPER50L
$39.05 | Hayneedle
Sunshine Perlite #3 - 4 cu.ft. - SUGRPLITE
$67.99 | Hayneedle
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™