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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
helllo quick question, I'm making diy root tabs and i need to know if air dry clay is suitable for this.
i bought craftsmart terra cotta natural air dry clay.
as far as i can find its safe.
is air dry good for root tabs and is it okay? could the rest of the brick be used for dirted tank to mix w topsoil?
or should i get regular pottery clay that "needs to be fired" even though I'm not going to.
thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
It looks like this clay is treated with some chemical so it dries out faster, maybe isopropyl, I don't know. You want regular clay that can be in fired.
thanks for the answer,
all i can find around here are inflated 50lb bags of terra cotta.
if I'm gonna pay like over 50 bucks then I'd like clay with more iron cause I've heard most use mexican but it is what it is

follow up question, how long do they take to suitably dry? I've read tom says to put them in the freezer for an hour.
but wouldn't they still easily fall apart in the water/substrate? will the clay in tabs hold enough to slow release?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Some smaller ones on Amazon

You can use facial clay too

The dried clay will break apart within a day. If you need a really slow release, you can fire the clay, I suppose.
thanks, i don't think firing it is the best idea from what I've heard. (bad effects to the ferts?)I'll try letting them dry and the freezer thing (hopefully effect here either).,, i really think these sound awesome i just wanna do it the right way. it doesn't need to be slow release like osmocote lol,
but something that wouldn't need replacing for a couple months would b ideal.
aquasoil doesnt need tabs for awhile right? just dirt and inert
have a good day,
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The fancy aquasoil is clay mixed with dirt/nutrients and fired so it doesn't break apart.
that's interesting, and sounds like a fun project. it's probably just low fired for a lil bit?
may consider firing my tabs for a few minutes, do u know i could really low fire them to where they stay useable and still mostly moldable?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Probably 900F for 40 minutes. You put the dried clay balls in double tin cans and throw them in a pit fire.
sounds like a good idea,
hope i don't sound like an idiot but couldn't high temps like 900F damage the dry fertilizers or something?
i think the tin cans should help when i get the right clay I'll try a few different methods.
is mexican over terra cotta necessary even with a lot of csm b in the tabs?
 

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Terra cotta isn't necessary. Plants might not be able to get at the iron in the clay anyway.
Yes, heat can change nutrient salt compounds but the nutrients should still be available for plants.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Whats your recipe? I have all the ingredients to do this…
i got my inspiration from How to make DIY root fertilizer tablets with clay

but in my case i think I'll add a little extra ca and mg cause i have soft water. maybe less micros or phosphates. I was planning to make a small batch to test my ratios and methods for lengthening how long they can hold their shape / "slowly" release nutrients.

i haven't tried this yet I've only just thought about it five minutes ago, but if you add a pinch of baking soda or some form of sodium bicarbonate to root tabs, would that help in providing nutrients for alkaline heavy feeders in soft water conditions? maybe in just low tech? sorry if that's a dumbo questiono
i don't remember if carbon can be available in the substrate.

if i blend the nutrients really well, and then divide amount of nutrients by how many balls i made, i can get a rough dosage ratio maybe?
I'll update this when i go to make them
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
i got my inspiration from How to make DIY root fertilizer tablets with clay

but in my case i think I'll add a little extra ca and mg cause i have soft water. maybe less micros or phosphates. I was planning to make a small batch to test my ratios and methods for lengthening how long they can hold their shape / "slowly" release nutrients.

i haven't tried this yet I've only just thought about it five minutes ago, but if you add a pinch of baking soda or some form of sodium bicarbonate to root tabs, would that help in providing nutrients for alkaline heavy feeders in soft water conditions? maybe in just low tech? sorry if that's a dumbo questiono
i don't remember if carbon can be available in the substrate.

if i blend the nutrients really well, and then divide amount of nutrients by how many balls i made, i can get a rough dosage ratio maybe?
I'll update this when i go to make them
woah
follow up question, if i add something decomposing like leaf mould compost in with the root tabs, in theory can that provide small amounts of available co2 over time? or would the amount be insignificant?
i also wanted to add humic acids and eventually try kelp meal but as i have neither of those it will have to wait.
 
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