Media (substrates) for cuttings & seedlings

The medium used for propagating seedlings or cuttings should provide high oxygen and moisture content.

Oxygen:  The medium should ideally provide a higher percentage of air (“air-filled porosity”) than ordinary soil. This is required because developing root systems need more oxygen than those that are mature.

Water:  The medium must retain sufficient water to minimize the risk of the root zone becoming dry. Water must also be able to drain freely from the pore spaces in the medium. Failure to do so can cause diseases to develop and roots to become starved of oxygen. This can eventually cause seeds to rot before germinating, and cuttings to rot before roots begin to form.

Common media for cuttings and seedlings

Examples of appropriate media are (Fig 17.9):

● Rockwool.
● Perlite (1 part) + vermiculite (1 part).
● Coco Peat (2 parts) + coarse river sand (5 parts).
● Perlite (2 parts) + coarse river sand (2 parts) + coco peat (1 part).


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