Potting Mixes & Composts

An open mix with high air porosity and good drainage is important to stimulate root growth and prevent many root diseases but it also leads to rapid leaching of nutrients away from the root zones of plants. Escott Zeolite prevents this by attracting and holding the nutrients preventing them washing through the container. The typical approach to growing crops has been to apply high rates of fertiliser to overcome the losses due to leaching. This is both expensive and inefficient as well as environmentally damaging in terms of high nutrient run off.

Use of Escott Zeolite will soak up excess ammonium in mixes often released under hot conditions, preventing root burning. Escott Zeolite is not effected by temperature and buffers the dumping of nutrients by polymer coated fertilisers under hot conditions. And Escott Zeolite is not acidic. In fact it is marginally alkaline and its use with fertilisers can help buffer soil pH levels thus reducing the need for lime applications.

Zeolite carries a negative ionic charge which naturally attracts positive charged cations like Ammonium, Potassium, Magnesium and Calcium. The open crystalline structure of zeolite has many storage sites for these ions which hold naturally through a loose chemical bond. These fertiliser ions are available to plants. Zeolite has a very high cation exchange capacity and thus increases the mixes ability to hold and release nutrients. As cations are water soluble they escape from mixes by leaching.

You get better value from your fertiliser dollar, improved plant growth and reduce the nutrient load in your runoff and collected water, reducing the E.C. levels of your water storages. 

Research

Initial trial work into horticulture commenced in 1988 and was conducted by the University of New England and carried out by the Department of Agronomy & Soil Science. Test planting of Lettuce and the flowering plant Reseda odorata into potting mixes at 8% by weight and Uralla (sandy granitic) soil

Conclusions:
The results of the trials using Escott zeolite from Zeolite Australia were significant. 

  • Escott Zeolite addition produced considerable increases in plant growth

  • Escott Zeolite reduces Nitrogen toxicity in early plant growth.

  • Zeolite has the ability to retain nitrogen in the absorbed (NH4+) form against leaching

  • Escott Zeolite improves the uptake of Nitrogen in plants and improves fertilizer utilization

  • Escott Zeolite did not increase residual nitrogen in the mix but improved uptake by plants by 175% in Potting mix 

Used by Australia's Leading Potting Mix Manufacturers

Escott Zeolite is used by many leading potting mix manufacturers for inclusion in the bark composting process and in finished growing medias to commercial growers, where its nutrient retention and ammonium buffering provide nutrient efficiency and ammonium safety. It also assists in the even distribution of water through mixes and increases the capillary uptake of water in capillary matt and ebb & flow irrigation systems.

Zeolite is also used in greenwaste recycling where it assists in even moisture and nutrient retention through composting windrows, reducing composting times and producing a less odourous, more consistent final compost.

Rates of Inclusion

1% of mix volume = 10 Kg per M
2.5% of mix volume = 25 Kg per M
5% of mix volume = 50 Kg per M

 

 

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