Growing media are the materials used for growing greenhouse crops. Plants are relatively dependent on the growing medium. Soil serves as a medium and its properties influence plant growth and development. Growing Media can be solid or liquid and are have three major functions:
1. Provides physically support to the plant
2. Allow for maximum root growth
3. Provide roots with nutrients, air, and water
Various components are used to prepare homemade and commercial growing media. Components for Growing Media can either be organic or inorganic.
Organic Components – These includes peat moss, bark, wood fiber, coconut coir, rice hulls and composted materials such as green wastes, municipal solid wastes, and even sewage.
Inorganic Components – These include perlite, pumice, vermiculite, rockwool, sand, grit or gravel, hydrogel, polystyrene balls or flakes etc.
Numbers of laboratory tests are done for growing media's physical characterization, but there are three measurements that are most familiar – bulk density, water holding capacity and air porosity.
pH and E.C. are the two important measurements that are done for growing media.
PRO-MIX products are available as standard or blended with ingredients including biofungicide, mycorrhizae or both.
Many people prefer to buy agriculture growing medium, but at the same time, some choose to make their own. Purchasing your own culture medium gives you peace of mind as the manufacturer has already done all the consistency checks for you.