Coco peat (coco-peat), also known as coir pith, coir fibre pith, coir dust, or simply coir, is made from coconut husks, which are by-products of other industries that use coconuts. Coir waste from coir fibre industries is washed, heat-treated, screened and graded before being processed into coco peat products of various granularity and denseness, which are then used for horticultural and agricultural applications and as industrial absorbent.
Usually shipped in the form of compressed bales, briquettes, slabs or discs, the end user usually expands and aerates the compressed coco peat by the addition of water. A single kilogram of coco peat will expand to 15 litres of moist coco peat.
Advantages of COCO PEAT
- The properties of Coco Peat make it resistant to bacterial and fungal growth.
- Coco Peat holds water rather than shedding it like traditional peat does! It holds 8-9 times its weight in water.
- Coco Peat has the ability to store and release nutrient to plants for extended periods of time. It also has greatoxygenation properties which is important for healthy root development.
- Enhanced root penetration
- Coco peat extends the life of compost.
- Contains natural substances and beneficial microbes for plant growth
- The coco peat tends to expand in its volume, (i.e..,) Four to five times from its original volume provided.
- It has a pH of 5.2-6.8 which is neutral to slightly acidic. This makes it great for alkaline garden soils.
- Easy to use – Just put your compressed Coco Peat brick in a container, add 4 quarts of warm water and let it sit until the water is absorbed, fluff it up and you are ready to use Coco Peat!
- Coco Peat can be reused for up to 4 years.
- Coco Peat is very slow to disintegrate; it only begins to break down when it is 10 years old, long term benefits.
- Has high air-filled porosity
- Much lighter than soil
- Weed free, pathogen free, insect free and odourless
- Excellent medium for growing worms. It’s actuallygood for them and increases worm growth by 25%.
- Mixed with sand, compost and fertilizer to make good quality potting soil
- Environment friendly and non-hazardous
- It can be combined with any of the normal ingredients and use as a mixer or a stand-alone product.
How to use coco-peat:
The normal use of coco-peat in foreign country are the use of coco-peat block form. Then if we need to expand the whole block later immerse the block in a large tub capable of holding at least 25 litres of water. Remove the wet expanded cocopeat that floats in the water. While continuing to add water to the tub till the complete block is expanded. The cocopeat in the bag are light in weight and easily transported to the nursery area or rain shelter greenhouse. For a large grower who needs to expand large number of cocopeat blocks, place the cocopeat blocks vertically with about 1 ft between them. Spray water from a hose on the cocopeat blocks while working on the blocks with hand to expand them into moist cocopeat. Another method is to use machinery to crush the block into powder and then use the dust.
The use of low compression cocopeat for absorption purposes, normally we advise the farmers to simply break and crush the block into powder in the palm of your hand. This method practical for those fragile cocopeat either for locally produced cocopeat or imported cocopeat. The use of cocopeat for potting mix we advise the user to mix the expanded cocopeat with leaf mould or homemade organic manure in the ratio of 1:1. Add red soil or sand in small quantities for large plants, otherwise the cocopeat will not be able to hold the weight of the plants as they grow. Red soil tends to compact over time (despite the cocopeat), so take care not to mix more than one third of the mix. For germination, mix cocopeat, leaf mould and sand in the ratio of 1:1:1. If you are using commercial organic manure, it would be better to mix cocopeat and organic manure in the ratio of 10:1 as commercial organic manures are often of high strength.