What is ideal growing media?

From the grower perspective, the ideal growing media must perform well under their own specific operation constraints. Their objective may include plant health, uniformity, time table for plant delivery, predictability, reliability and sureness are crucial factors for selecting a specific potting substrate (Ball 1998;Schmilewski 2008). Traditionally, peat is a dominant material used as growing media worldwide. …READ MORE

Peat is a spongy substance which is an effect of incomplete decomposition of plant residues in different stages of decomposition. Between the several organic matters which are used as substrate for horticultural plants cultivation in soilless conditions, peat is the unabandonable ingredient for mixtures for commercial production of plants. Peat is used in horticulture as a component of garden plant substrates, in agriculture for the production of garden soil and as an organic fertilizers.

Sphagnum peat moss is still an indispensable ingredients in modern horticulture

The cultivation of vegetables, fruits and flowers is increasingly soil-less, i.e. takes place in pre-prepared ‘growing media’ that allow uniform, high-quality plants to be grown at very high productivity levels. Sphagnum peat has, in the last decades, emerged as the foremost constituent of these growing media (Joosten, 1995; Alexander et al., 2008) because of its structural stability, low bulk density, high porosity and low pH, nutrient and nitrogen immobilization levels.

General description for raw materials:

Based on color ( degree of decomposition)

White peat extracted by milling technique is suitable for substrates to be used in trays, small pots and packs. The flowability of this raw material aids rapid filling and thus is ideal for use in automated filling lines.

White peat

Brown peat is partially to moderate decomposed (H4-H6), rich in organic matter. It is very suitable for different substrate blends to improve plants growing properties.

Brown peat

Black peat is appreciated by growers because of its high water capacity and fertilizers retention properties. It extends irrigation intervals (especially under warm climatic conditions) and improve cultivation results.

Black peat

Based on size and mining technique:

Milled peat

Peat cutting is the most common type of peat extraction. It lends itself well to automated processes, both in the production process and in the use of finished substrates. White peat materials are extracted in the field by milling the surface of the peat bog, and  is suitable for substrates to be used in trays, small pots and packs. The flowability of this raw material aids rapid filling and thus is ideal for use in automated filling lines.

Milled Peat

Sod (block) peat

Extraction of peat sods is the optimal method for preserving the peat’s structure and thus to ensure the aeration properties when used in a substrate. Peat derived from sods has a very low proportion of fine particles like a dust (< 1 mm). Sod peat mainly used in substrates for plants with high requirements for air capacity and steady drainage. Sod peat is a beneficial component in potting and container substrates for green plants, flowering plants, shrubs and trees.

Sod (Block) Peat

Black & White

Any peat producer or knowledgeable agronomist will certainly recognize the best and most valuable peat substrate is mixture of sod peat and black peat. It combines all the essential qualities a plant needs. The only limit will be the price of such premium class supermix. However, the results will outweigh any investment. It is the best soil for a demanding plant

Black & White

Demanded properties for growing media.

Sphagnum peat has been the most important growing medium constituent for many decades because its properties are the best available. In addition to a high water holding capacity (WHC) and cation exchange capacity (CEC), peat has a naturally low pH and nutrient level. Natural peat from bogs has a pH value between 3.5 and 5.0. Peat based substrates are limed to a pH between 5.0 and 6.0 to stabilise the plant available nitrogen compounds and to ensure the nutrient availability of plants. By liming, fertilization and supplementation of other substances, horticultural soils can be optimally adapted to different requirements.

Available alternatives and additions

Other common organic input materials often used to reduce the peat fraction in growing media are compost, treated wood fibres, coir, composted bark, digestates, Sphagnum moss and inorganic materials such as perlite, vermiculite, clay granules, pumice and lava rock. Although growers are interested in new compounds for growing media, the alternative materials do not have the same properties, are expensive or not available compared to peat.

More detailed description of different types of Sphagnum peat moss (open through the each image listed below)

Baltic peat moss.

Produced for greenhouses, nurseries, professional gardeners. Also special offer for hobby market and private label substrates.

World class standards.

Baltic sphagnum peat moss is very well known thank to it’s excellent characteristics.

Despite the fact that peat deposits are available in many countries, genuine quality peat that can be used in professional gardening is a rare thing. Most peat has their physical characteristics insufficient to be used for substrate production. They are only useful for backyard gardening or for adding to existing soils to remedy one of the missing features. One of the main characteristics of professional substrates is their compliance with standardized requirements, which do not vary according to where or when the raw materials were obtained. The Baltic peat substrates are recognized as one of the best in the world. The demand for them is increasing every year, and they are competing strongly with products of other origin. Air irrigation and water absorption capacity is very high comparing to other region peat moss products.

There for Baltic peat is very well suited for:

  • Greenhouses;
  • Nurseries;
  • Professional gardeners;
  • Landscaping professionals;
  • Hobby substrates;
  • Professional peat substrate  manufacturers.

Areapeat manufactures and exports directly to end-users: professional growers, greenhouses, nurseries, hobby market and peat moss substrate manufacturer as well.

Wide range of substrate recipes cover all needs of growers. Full range specification list  including different screening, peat type, additives : NPK, perlite , clay, lime for pH adjust, trace elements, wetting agent, etc. Also we can customize peat moss according to client requirements.