How to make peat free compost from your 5kg block of Cocopeat compost
Place the block in a suitably large container. A waterproof wheelbarrow or trolley cart is ideal for easily moving it around afterwards.
Add about 50 litres of water. Leave it to soak in for around 20 minutes.
Crumble the block into the water. If it’s looking dry add more. Mix it up a bit and voilà: 70 or so litres of peat free compost!
What is cocopeat compost made of?
Coconut trees are amazing! Every single bit of it is used in one way or another. The husk of the coconut is coir. The more stringy bits are used for mats, ropes, brushes, even caulking for boats. The less stringy bits weren’t much use until someone had the brainwave of compressing it into blocks which could be re-hydrated to make compost. It’s composted enough to make it friable. Coir compost seems to vary quite a lot; I’ve seen some that is very coarse but this produces a nice fine potting compost.
What is the cocopeat compost good for?
Cocopeat holds a lot of water. It is also good for drainage. It contains potassium, zinc, manganese, iron and copper. Cocopeat supports strong root growth and is good for starting seeds. You wouldn’t need to add vermiculite to this when propagating plants as it is already drains well. And even better, unlike vermiculite and perlite this stuff is biodegradable. And even better still, it’s not mined like vermiculite and similar soil improvers, it’s simply a waste product from the coconut industry, so it’s a lot more environmentally friendly and does two jobs in one.
However it does lack some other key nutrients so it’s good to mix it with a fertiliser for optimum growth. We recommend our sheep wool pellets to give the growing medium extra fertiliser and structure (well we would, wouldn’t we!). You can mix it with regular soil. Or you can use it as a kind of hydroponic medium, adding the right amount of nutrients diluted into the liquid mix you add to it. It’s quite a clean growing medium so it doesn’t get dirt on your herbs and vegetables.
What is the pH of Cocopeat Compost?
Cocopeat compost is virtually neutral, ranging from just over 5 to just under 7, whereas peat extracted from precious peat bogs is slightly acidic. This makes the Cocopeat compost much more suitable for a wider range of plants, as well as being much more sustainable. You know not to buy peat compost, right? I mean, not even a small proportion of peat in the compost? I know I go on about it but peat extraction is so destructive.
Is Cocopeat organic?
The Cocopeat compost is a by-product of commercially grown coconut so it can’t be guaranteed to be organic. However it’s a totally natural, environmentally friendly and sustainable product.