As the saying goes, a good crop starts with a well prepared nursery. If your seedlings perform exemplary, you are definitely going to have a good yield. In the recent past, farmers have been shifting to soilless media to propagate their seedlings. One of the media that is increasingly becoming popular is coco peat planting media. Unfortunately, many farmers have little knowledge on how to handle this product, especially new users.
Coco peat planting media must be treated first before use, what many farmers don’t do. Failure to treat the growing media will lead to poor germination due to the scorching effect and nutrient antagonism. Plants also exhibit some form of stunting in their growth.
• Soak in water to hydrate it. This also loosens it.
• Add calcium nitrate to replace the sodium. This is a displacement reaction.
• The water is then drained, the pH and electrical conductivity (EC) of the media measured. Ideal pH should be 5.6-6.5 while the EC should be 1.6-2.0.
• Finally, the media is potted in seedling trays then seeds sowed.
• After germination, nutrition programme begins after two weeks since the media does not have nutrients.