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Cheap potting mix

    6 responses

amanda starts with ...
Hi all...i just thought i would mention that after years of testing lots of potting mixes for SOIL improving - that the Coles brand is the best value believe it or not. It's got the standard quality ticks and costs about $3 for 25kg bag. I have found it good stuff and use it in my veg garden etc.

My other bargain is black and gold Fish emulsion - cheapest fert you buy at around $3.50 for 500mL (about60 cents /100mL)

Anyone else know of any bargains?
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Geraldton. WA
29th January 2010 1:18pm
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Charles cant spell says...
Nice tips :)
I have one, not a bargain buy, just an idea, I have a potting area where all my small to intermeditate pots are sitting, growing and being potted up, its in dappled shade under a tree.
There is just crap sand under the tree.
So I put down leaf litter or mulch etc, couple of handfuls of manure and some BnB and sit the pots on top. Given you need to water the smaller pots so often the moisture, worms and bugs speed up the breakdown of the potting area bed mixture. Every 3-6 months you have new potting mix, best of all its under the pots in the potting area. No buying no moving no worries. Just take 50% sand and 50% organic matter. Replace and repeat, you may need to add more soil/sand once it gets to deep, but a depression in the potting area is benificial as all water is retained, and there is a lot as half of it doesnt go in the pots and another 1/4 comes out the base of the pot.
Dont use anything woodchips that are to course else you will just have to pick it out. The real bonus is you get the soil biology as the potting mix is in your soil and it will be full of worms, unlike bought mix.

Pretty obvious and you need a sligh shade area and hand watering the pots every 2-3 days but other than that its easy.
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Perth - Innaloo
29th January 2010 6:57pm
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Original Post was last edited: 29th January 2010 7:00pm
Julie says...
amanda, you say 'years of testing', but what/how did you test? Would love to know.

I have had poor results lately from Richgrow potting mix and blended manure. So I might give the Coles one a bash if you recommend it, also the fish emulsion.Thanks for the tip.
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Roleystone WA
29th January 2010 7:05pm
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amanda says...
Hi Charles n Julie.. what a great idea Charles - makes sense! Julie - I have always added potting mix to my sandy soils - (only in the veg garden and when planting trees) - it's just a quick way to get "soil" up n running and (IMO) it's a great, instant sand improver/conditioner.
I have tried all of the cheapest brands available - especially at Bunnings (as I don't want to spend too much) and also worked out the price "per kilo". Mostly they are awful in that they either become water repellent easily or they "dissappear" really quickly.
I don't know why that it is..maybe it's the quality of the mix.
Cols brand price per kilo - cheapest for me so far. Quality ticked - good. Works really well in my soil.
I use a premium potting mix only for pot plants.
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Geraldton. WA
29th January 2010 8:58pm
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James1943 says...

I just bought ten bags of this new Richgro potting soil which is now made up of mainly re-cycled domestic garbage waste I understand?

After buying hundreds of bags in the past and been very satisfied with it I won't be buying any more?

(1) It now won't drain properly.
(2) Its stinks like a wet sour paper. (3) When re-potting the roots get ripped off because this stuff just will not separates from the pot.
(4) Not only won't it separate from the pot, it crumbles away from the plant ripping off fine roots.
(5) After a few watering the sand content is pushed to the surface.
(6) The plant is rocked lose by the breeze and flops about like a lose tooth.
(7) Forget planting frangipani cutting it this stuff or similar root systems because when re-potting all the roots get ripped off due to this funny stuff not separating from the pot and it crumbles away from the root system.

Now I'm looking for a replacement after tipping this rubbish and giving it a good mix in with the compost.

I'll let you know how that plan works out?

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19th December 2017 12:26pm
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Markmelb says...
Ive been using Scotts Potmate all purpose 50lt from B-----gs and amend it for my purpose whether for a long term planting with 7mm scoria & coir / pearlite / vermiculite etc or nothing for seedlings etc - Ive not tried the regular bags at Km--t for a while - at least the Potmate is as close to the old Debco i used to use and does have minor ferts included as call Scotts to find out.Ive also used glass stones (like 7mm pumice pebbles and lighter than Scoria)
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20th December 2017 9:18am
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Manfred says...
I'm totally with you, James and Amanda on this.
When I'm in my southern location I use Coles potting mix. I bought some Richgro in IGA in Tully a few months ago, which was the worst potting mix I have ever used. They don't sell that stuff any more and went back to Black and Gold (or whatever) which is OK.
I read the Australian Standard for potting mixes years ago and the only difference between premium potting mix and standard potting mix with the SAA ticks is fertiliser.
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20th December 2017 5:53pm
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