Potting soil is a common term used for the soil used in pots where the plants are grown. This potting soil has to provide all the nourishment in the confined space to the plant. This is definitely a challenging task and hence this soil is made in a special manner. If you are a gardener by hobby or by profession, you might know the process. It is a mix of peat, composted bark, sand, perlite and recycled mushroom compost. But what happens to the soil after the plant is removed? The plant might be diseased or would have grown too big to be contained in such a confined space. Efficient waste removal is the key to successful planting.
The first thing to note is that, if the plant has died because of some disease then that soil should never be reused. It is highly probable that the disease causing agents might be present in the soil and might affect and kill the newer plants as well. Other than that the soil can be reused. But there is some processing that must be done. While growing up, the plants use up all the resources available in the soil, making it completely barren. In order to give the newer plants their fair share of nutrients the contents of the soil must be rejuvenated before planting anything in them. Instead of sending your garden waste for waste disposal you can compost it and make the soil more nutritious.
- Reduce Salt:
Plants leave salt in the soil that they generate daily. This salt reduces the fertility of soil and acts as a barrier when trying to replenish its nutrients. So, the first step is to remove the salt in the soil. This can be done by pasteurization of soil. Put the soil in black plastic bags and bake them in the sun.
- Mix some newer compost:
This is very easy and pretty self-explanatory. Take the older potting soil and mix it with the new compost and replenish the soil for newer plants. This will serve two very important purposes: Lesser requirement of new compost and reuse of the older potter soil. This idea is proven to be the best if the soil is used for several years. Instead of removing garden waste or sending it for rubbish disposal, use to make a compost pile.
- Fertilize the containers:
If the previous plants have taken up all the nutrients from the soil, then it is the first and the foremost requirement to fertilize the containers. This will make the soil fresh and ready to be used.
All these processes can ideally optimize your potting soil usage and increase the productivity and greenery of the garden.