Sometimes It is quite hard to choose what to use to enhance the growth of your garden. Who do you ensure that the plants your planted will stay in the best possible condition? You will have to do extensive research into what makes the soil better for the plants you planted.
While doing so, you will come across coconut coir and peat moss to choose from. Apparently, both of them do the same kind of things for your soil and garden. But, one may be a better choice for you than the other based on various factors. In this coconut coir vs peat moss fight, we discuss both sides of the two essential soil amendments.
What is coconut coir?
You may be familiar with peat moss as it has been in the gardening world for quite a while but not with coconut coir because it’s relatively new. Coconut coir soil mix, just like peat moss, is a soil amendment material made from coconuts. It has similar effects on the soil like peat moss. Let’s know the coco peat benefits.
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So, what does coconut coir gardening do for you?
•It helps to retain moisture or water in the soil with a really good absorbance. Your plants will not feel dehydrated and the soil will not feel too compact.
• Traps air in the soil, letting the roots, along with the soil breathe.
• It prevents the infestation of insects or pests because they do not like growing or living on coco peats.
• Coco peat is quite an environment friendly and it poses no extreme risk for your plants.
How to make coconut coir?
Making coconut coir is quite a lengthy task. Firstly, the inners ofter part of the coconuts are separated from the shell by soaking them in fresh or saltwater. After separating them, the shells are dried for about a year. Then, they are chopped or made into the various forms coco coir is available.
You will find the coir in the various forms- coco coir bricks, coco coir compost, coco coir husk fiber, coco coir bulk, coco coir chips, etc. In fact, you can use the various forms in various ways.
You can use coco coir as the only medium for growing your plant or you can use the coco coir fiber to just make the soil you plant the plants in more aerated.
Which type of coco coir depends on the type of coco coir soil mix you want. Or, if you just need the coco coir as the soil for your garden- yes, that works too. If you are thinking about the coco coir vs coco peat dilemma then you know now it just depends on how you want to plant your plants.
In this case, you have to answer the question of how to use coconut coir in gardening. Yes, there are a few ways in which you can use it which is why there are different types of coconut coir.
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How to use coconut fiber for planting?
With these questions, we will get to how you can use coco coir in your garden. If you only use the coco peat or fiber, the roots of your plants may drown in the coir. In fact, you have to use coco coir just the way you would use peat moss in your garden.
You can use a coco coir soil mix recipe to get your pot ready. In this case, you just add coco coir to an equal amount of soil and also add some compost if you feel like it. Another way you can use coco coir is a coco coir perlite mix. In this case, you usually add 30% perlite to the total mixture of both.
As weird as it may sound you can also use a coco coir peat moss mix. Why two of the same type of amendments? Because both of them have individual properties that can balance out the extremes of each other.
If you are concerned about coco coir nutrients- you have nothing to be concerned about, Apparently, neither coco coir nor peat moss has any nutrients in them. They just make the soil reach a better state for the plants.
Coconut Coir Vs Peat Moss
Peat moss is the more traditional soil amendment that is made from peat bogs. Both have similar functions in the gardening world. So, let us see how you can make a choice between when it is coconut coir vs peat moss.
1.The Water Retention Capacity
Both coconut coir and peat moss are excellent at retaining water in the ground. However, peat moss takes some time to accept the water while coco coir does it right away. Peat moss and coco coir can both hold water for long periods of time but coco coir seems to get saturated faster.
So, if you usually go a while without watering your plants then peat moss may be a better option. Other than that, one of teh growing in coco tips would be to water your plants carefully. You do not want to overdo it now, do you?
2.The pH level of each
One of the key differential points of the two is the pH level of each. Peat moss is quite acidic with a pH level ranging from 3.3 to 4. On the other hand, coco coir is much less acidic with a pH level of 5.2 to 6.8 This makes coco coir more suitable for most kinds of plants as it is very neutral.
You have to be careful about using peat moss. Because most plants cannot live in such extremely acidic conditions. Other than that, if you have an alkaline gardening environment or use tap water which is alkaline- then peat moss can be a good choice.
3.The Sustainability of each
It has been found through research that peat moss is much less sustainable than coco choir. While coco coir takes less time to make and is available greatly, peat moss cannot be remade from the same place for about 25 years.
Therefore, if sustainability is an issue for you, coco coir is a better choice. Only in the sustainability fight of coconut coir vs peat moss, does coconut coir clearly win.
4.The Salt Content
While peat moss can be very acidic, coco coir may have high amounts of salt in it as well. This depends on how the coco coir has been made. If the coco coir has been treated in saltwater then it will have more salt in it.
Also, coconuts usually grow in the sea environment where they take up salty water through the roots. However, there are ways to treat this problem and you can easily get rid of the extra salt in the coconut coir.
The cost varies depending on your location but they are quite close to each other. So, the cost is not really a determining factor in this case. However, the availability of the unit may determine a lot of things.
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It is not possible to choose between coco coir and peat moss in general. Coco coir organic is a great choice but if peat moss is more available in your area than that might do. In the end, it fully comes down to your own preferences, which one you choose for your garden.
So, the answer to the question Coconut Coir Vs Peat moss is quite subjective.
Despite a few drawbacks, coco coir can be quite a good choice based on its sustainability. In order to find the best coco coir, all you have to do is check if the type is alright for you, the content is neither too salty nor too acidic. The best depends on the needs of your garden.