Friday, October 3, 2014

Sanitize Potting Soil for Reuse

Did you know that sanitizing soil is a great way to save money, while ensuring optimal health for your plants? And all you need is an oven, a cooking tray, some tin foil, and a meat thermometer! And the soil you want to sanitize, of course.

Obviously, reusing your old potting soil is cheaper than buying new. But why should you sanitize it? Heating your soil to high temperatures in a microwave, oven, or pressure cooker kills the pathogens that could cause plant disease in your future plants. Sanitizing is especially important if your previous plantings had problems with pests, fungus, or disease. Be careful though; if your soil gets too hot, it could produce unhealthy toxins!

How to Sterilize Soil in the Oven
Don’t spend money on new soil when you can reuse!

·      Preheat oven to 200°
·      Put 4 to 5 inches of moistened soil into an oven-safe container and cover with aluminum foil
·      Put soil in oven
·      Use a cooking thermometer to find when soil reaches 180°, then cook for an additional 30 minutes
·      Do not allow soil to reach a temperature of higher than 200°, as this may produce toxins

Sterilizing soil is a good idea to ensure optimal growth and health of your plants!

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