Planting in peat pots is a great way to start seedlings that will eventually be transplanted into the ground or garden. They are a biodegradable alternative to plastic pots that comes in many different shapes and sizes. They can be made at home using materials you probably already have lying around the house.
You can use them for a variety of plants from flowers to vegetables and everything in between!
In this blog post, I will answer all your questions about how peat pots work, how they should be used, how they are made, how long they last before decomposing. And basically anything you need to know about these nifty little things!
What are Peat Pots?
Peat pots are biodegradable, reusable plant containers made out of peat moss and other plant materials. They are most often used as starter pots for seeds but can also be transplanted to larger containers once the seedlings have grown in size.
They have been used for centuries to grow plants in a sustainable manner that doesn't deplete soil resources. They are similar to clay pots, but instead of sand or gravel, they use peat moss as the base material for construction.
You can use them for a variety of plants from flowers to vegetables and everything in between!
How are Peat Pots made?
Peat moss comes from decomposed plants initially found in bogs and marshes, formed over centuries by a natural process of extensive decomposition underwater or saturated soil conditions. It's rich in nutrients like nitrogen, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and phosphorous, making it perfect for growing healthy, nutrient-rich plants!
Commercially, manufacturers of these pots will take large quantities of peat material and thoroughly saturate it in water, causing it to turn into a thick muddy mixture. They will add some wood pulp to this mixture for rigidity and blend it thoroughly into a peat slurry.
Once the slurry is prepared, it will be pressed into forms. Pressing it compacts the moss and wood pulp into its intended shape and squeezes out most of the excess liquid. Tightly compacted together, it will then be dried thoroughly, creating a biodegradable pot.
Due to the addition of the wood pulp, these pots will hold their shape long enough that starting seeds in peat pots shouldn't be a problem. However, the pot will eventually lose form, so it's essential to plant your seedlings quickly once they're ready.
Planting pot can also be made at home using materials you probably already have lying around the house. Look further for details.
What plants can you be planting in peat pots
If you're looking to grow plants in a peat pot, it's best to choose plants that don't need deep roots or adapt well to shallow root growth.
In this case, your options are many:
- Herbs are usually great for starting out in peat pots and come with the added benefit of being easy to transplant.
- Vegetables like tomatoes should be transplanted as soon as possible due to their long taproot, which will pull up any nutrient-filled soil on its way down. They'll still last without proper drainage for some time if they just have one leaf poking through the top while staying moist from rain overhead.
- If you want flowers to start them now because even though seeds can take weeks before sprouting into shoots, once they do, they're ready for transplanting
- You can also use peat pots to start seedlings.
Keep these tips in mind when planting your next plants so that you can get off to a good start!
Can you grow plants in just peat moss?
No, you can't grow plants in just pear most as it is not a complete potting mix and needs at least one more ingredient, such as sand, perlite, or compost before it can be used for plants.
What are the different types of peat pots?
There are a few different types of peat containers, pots, strips, and peat pellets. They all have their own use cases, which I will explain right now.
Some people prefer looser material that allows the plant root system to penetrate more deeply. In contrast, others like it tightly packed to not let any moisture escape.
Peat strips are long strips of peat moss that are typically used for seedlings. They are the cheapest and most eco-friendly option for planting.
These pressed strips of peat form little chambers that serve as rows in a seedling tray. However, you can use a razor blade or scissors to cut the chamber into sections. These cut sections may even separate from one another by hand.
You then simply plant the whole section with a pot attached which causes less transplant stress because the layer of peat within will eventually break down over time.
However, they are designed to be lightweight and will only hold up long enough for the plants to get started. You'll need to transplant these plants quickly before the peat layer starts breaking down.
Peat pellets are made up of many individual pieces, making them more expensive than strips but cheaper than plastic pots.
These pellets do not use the wood pulp as the standard pots or strips. The biomass is covered with a fine mesh material, giving the pellet some shape.
When these pellets arrive, they're small compressed discs.
Some kits come with peat pellets and a plastic tray with round indentations for the discs. The instructions for Jiffy peat pellets say to pour warm water over them until they have fully expanded before planting plants.
Once warm water hits the compacted pellets, the pellet immediately starts to swell up, forming a cylinder of peat which is barely held in place by the surrounding bio-mesh. There's usually a tiny indentation in the planting side, making it easy to drop a couple of seeds inside. It's almost like using miniature fabric pots!
Peat pot is the most common type - these look like a small plastic container with drainage holes in the bottom, which you fill with potting mix and plant your flowers into.
Some come with an insert, so it's easy to remove those once roots start growing through them! You can also buy biodegradable pots, but how do you make homemade peats? Check out our blog post on how we made ours from scratch!
The size ranges from small miniatures for seedlings up to large containers for trees and shrubs.
How to use Peat Pots?
Peat pots are used by following the same process as most standard garden containers – add potting soil to fill the pot, plant seeds or seedlings, and water.
Seedlings in peat pots are perfect when you need to transplant your plant into larger containers or raised beds. They can grow in them until ready, so you don't have to worry about how well rooted your plants might be before transplanting them from peat pot!
When using peat pellets or strips, you should start by laying them in a flat layer on top of your potting mix and then add more soil so that it is level with the peat pot. This will help keep moisture levels even, which can be crucial in desert climates.
If you're using strips, simply cut the piece to size for how deep of a container you want and use scissors to make slits around it where you'll hold onto it when placing it into the ground!
You can start seed germination in peat seed pots, but you'll need to transplant them into a larger container or raised bed as soon as they have their first set of true leaves.
Regardless of whether you're using seed pots, strips, or pellets, you will need to set them into some form of a tray. Set the tray on top of the seed starting heat mat if you need extra warmth. The peat moss provides some warmth which helps the plants germinate quickly. Just make sure to avoid placing them in direct sunlight.
You can keep seedlings of most vegetables and flowers inside the starting seeds pot or container for at least two weeks. Still, after getting their first set of true leaves, you'll need to transplant them into a larger container or raised bed.
When transplanting plants from pots, make sure to loosen the pot base to give roots an easier time breaking through.
Taking a razor and making some shallow cuts around the bottom of a pot or through the pellet base is essential before transplanting. This makes it easier for growing roots to penetrate through and extend into the soil where it has been transplanted.
Take care not to damage roots while doing this. If they are damaged during transplanting, plants could suffer severe shock after planting!
Place newly transplanted plant deeper than its original depth now that there's less root mass exposed – about as close as how deep the plant was initially planted.
Continue watering and fertilizing as usual, just like how you would wet your plants in a traditional pot garden or any type of container gardening.
Peat pots are handy for planting tower gardens that have oddly shaped spaces. When wet, the peat pot becomes flexible and easy to set into place.
Do peat pots dissolve?
Yes, peat pots will dissolve over time and decompose into the soil. So just make sure not to water excessively- which speeds up the process!
There's no set time frame as for when peat actually breaks down into compost. Many factors are involved: how big was each pot; what type of soils were used; how often did you water them (not too much); how closely together were they planted etc.?
However, they do not last as long as disposable plastic containers do.
This means that eventually, roots will break through the bottom of a peat pot and loosen it from its place on top of the root ball. When this happens, you'll need to make another set of fresh peat pots or use something else like biodegradable planting pellets instead.
Where to Buy Peat or Biodegradable Pots?
You can buy peat pots or biodegradable pots easily online. You can also get them at many local garden stores. Here are some recommendations:
1. Seed Starting kit -by Mr. Sprout
The kit comes with biodegradable pots, so they won't adversely affect the environment.
Peat pots also help retain moisture since it is made of 100% organic peat moss. The potting soil stays moist longer than traditional containers such as plastic cups.
This Kit Includes:
- 2 Heavy Duty 1020 Plant Trays (No Drain Holes)
- 2 Humidity Domes (Lids)
- 10 Peat Trays of 10 Pots (100 - 1.75" Pots Total)
The lids are keeping the humidity in, and seeds grew more quickly that way.
2. Jiffy Peat Pellets
The product comes with 50 pellets that have a thin net holding them together. Once your plants are ready to be transplanted, all you have to do is transplant them directly into the ground or container. You will minimize transplant shock and root damage.
This pellet is 36mm and will expand (1.50in x 1.50in.)
3. ANGTUO Peat Pots
No transplant shock, no root circulation, and no withered plants and flowers - it's that simple! Just grow your seeds, and then plant them in your yard or garden without removing them from the pots.
The product includes:
- 30x organic pots
- 20 x Plant Markers
How do you make homemade peat pots?
If you want to make your own peat pots, you can use a number of different materials. You may want to consider using:
- cutting up sections from sphagnum moss
- old coffee filters, toilet paper or newspaper strips
- cheesecloth and toilet tissue rolls
When using peat moss to make your own pot, it is best to mix the moss with some compost, soil, and sand. This mixture should be moistened before being placed in a pot shape.
After you have made your own peat pots, they need to be set out in the sun so that they can dry. Once dried, these will start decomposing on their own or if left outside.
If you want to make a pot from all other materials, either newspaper strips, toilet paper, or coffee filters. Make sure to soak them in water and then place them in a pot shape.
Here is a great video explaining how to use newspaper to make a pot:
After making some peat pots, there's only one thing left to do--get gardening! The best way to ensure success while using this type of container is to have drainage holes at the bottom of it and be sure not to water too heavily when seeds are first planted.
Peat pots are also an excellent option for starting seedlings because they provide a warm and humid environment that is perfect for root growth, making transplanting much easier later on.
If you're looking for an eco-friendly alternative to plastic pots, peat pots are the perfect solution. They work great with different plants - from flowers and vegetables to those that need a little extra time in their pot before being transplanted into the ground or garden.
I hope you've found the information in this blog post to be helpful! If there are any other questions you have, please don't hesitate to reach out.