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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi folks
Has anyone used coco peat as part of substrate?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coco_Peat

It is more stable than peat and starts disintegrating only after ten years. It is an excellent medium for Hydroponics. It is acidic and so is peat. Can it be used as a substitute for vermiculite/ perlite/ peat, etc.?
 

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It can absorb water almost 15 times its volume! After proper soaking they will be a little buoyant(so is vermiculite/perlite) but they would form only the bottom and middle part of the substrate. The bottom, laterite or red mud commonly found in South India mixed with some river sand and coco peat; middle, river sand mixed with a higher ratio of coco peat- around 60:40. This can be topped off with at least 2 inches of 3-4mm river sand. This will keep the coco peat down and the substrate nice and and ready for planting. You can also boil the coco peat if you find it leaching tannins. Clean fibers can also used as a filter media IMO especially to reduce alkalinity. It takes more than 10 years to disintegrate. Possibilities of its use in the hobby are many. I'm going to experiment in a 24x24x24 cube. I'll try to document it. Meanwhile, I'd like to know if anybody has used this material and also the thoughts of fellow hobbyists.
Thanks
 

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It's also far better for the environment since peat harvesting destroys ecosystems that take thousands of years to regenerate.
 

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Peat also makes a big mess in a tank if it reaches free water. I would hesitate about mentioning perlite as something that is merely a little buoyant. I spent a few years mixing soil in commercial greenhouse and vermiculite will eventually sink as does peat but perlite is basically sand that is heat expanded, sort of like popcorn made of sand. It absolutely floats and will eventually even come to the top of a well watered pot of soil, just like styrofoam.
 
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