Square Foot Gardening Forum

Hello Guest!
Welcome to the official Square Foot Gardening Forum.
There's lots to learn here by reading as a guest. However, if you become a member (it's free, ad free and spam-free) you'll have access to our large vermiculite databases, our seed exchange spreadsheets, Mel's Mix calculator, and many more members' pictures in the Gallery. Enjoy.


Search
 
 

Display results as :
 

 


Rechercher Advanced Search

Latest topics
» CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in September 2016
by Kelejan Today at 9:53 pm

» What are you eating from your garden today?
by Mimi2 Today at 9:37 pm

» N&C Midwest: September 2016
by Scorpio Rising Today at 8:41 pm

» In between
by Scorpio Rising Today at 8:33 pm

» What's a good type of lettuce to try for some one who doesn't like lettuce?
by Scorpio Rising Today at 8:25 pm

» Plantoid' s going into hospital ....
by Scorpio Rising Today at 8:21 pm

» Hello from San Antonio, Tx.
by AtlantaMarie Today at 5:16 pm

» Senseless Banter...
by Kelejan Today at 2:52 pm

» Tomato Mystery Mix
by sanderson Today at 11:26 am

» Easy and Fabulous Crockpot Marinara
by trolleydriver Today at 11:03 am

» newbeone
by Cajun Cappy Today at 8:59 am

» The Research Journey:free-The Gardener’s Guide TO PERFECT GARDEN SOIL
by has55 Today at 6:40 am

» parsnips in square foot garden?
by sanderson Today at 2:57 am

» The SFG Journey-Cover crops
by jimmy cee Yesterday at 9:45 pm

» Oh no! My hibiscus moscheutos plant has some roots exposed!
by RJARPCGP Yesterday at 9:37 pm

» Tryst with my first DIY SFG
by Mimi2 Yesterday at 8:12 pm

» New England September 2016
by sanderson Yesterday at 7:50 pm

» Soil Blocks: Tutorial In Photos
by sanderson Yesterday at 2:57 pm

» Compost
by camprn Yesterday at 8:13 am

» Hand Pollination ?
by camprn Yesterday at 8:11 am

» Second Year SFG in Canada
by Scorpio Rising 9/26/2016, 8:33 pm

» The Research Journey:SELF-WATERING SALAD GARDEN COURSE
by has55 9/26/2016, 6:58 pm

» Admin back! Classic cars
by AtlantaMarie 9/26/2016, 5:38 pm

» Kale & Parsnip Question
by countrynaturals 9/26/2016, 3:09 pm

» compost thermometer
by sanderson 9/26/2016, 1:58 pm

» Northern California & Coastal Valleys - What are you doing this month?
by sanderson 9/26/2016, 12:37 pm

» EXPERIMENT: Tomatoes to Powder
by trolleydriver 9/26/2016, 11:00 am

» The Research Journey:what to plant now, fall gardening in Dallas-Ft worth
by sanderson 9/25/2016, 9:55 pm

» Medical Topic...may be helpful to some folk....
by sanderson 9/25/2016, 9:50 pm

» Gardening in Central Pennsylvania
by Scorpio Rising 9/25/2016, 9:04 pm

Google

Search SFG Forum

Soil Block Makers

View previous topic View next topic Go down

Soil Block Makers

Post  Kelejan on 3/6/2014, 3:44 pm

Has anyone experience of using Seed Block makers? I have made a cursery search but did not come up with anything, although I am sure they have been discussed here somewhere.
Johnnie's Seeds have them for sale and their explanation seems very sensible as to why one should use them.


Last edited by camprn on 3/7/2014, 12:05 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Corrected title)

Kelejan

Female Posts : 4220
Join date : 2011-04-24
Age : 81
Location : Castlegar, British Columbia

View user profile http://www.castlegarinkspot.ca

Back to top Go down

Re: Soil Block Makers

Post  keepercjr on 3/6/2014, 4:22 pm

I use them and I really like them!  I didn't even make my own mix but I bought some from pottingblocks.com (they also sell the soil block makers).  That website has a great tutorial as well.  This is my second year using them and I couldn't be happier.  For plants you plan to keep indoors longer before planting (like tomatoes) you will need to pot up eventually and I use a solo cup for that with mels mix.  Some people use the bottom half of 2 liter bottles.

keepercjr

Female Posts : 66
Join date : 2012-03-11
Age : 35
Location : Fresno, ca zone 9B

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Soil Block Makers

Post  mapspringer on 3/6/2014, 4:38 pm

I agree completely with keepercjr.  It's my second year using the Johnnys 4-block maker and I absolutely love it!  I have 2 trays of starts going under my desk at work right now.  When they're ready to up pot (to cheapie solo cups, or other re-purposed container) they'll just get dropped-in and layered with some additional compost and back under the lights until hardening off time.  They really took off last year using this method!


mapspringer

Male Posts : 66
Join date : 2012-04-01
Location : Middle Tennessee

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Soil Block Makers

Post  camprn on 3/6/2014, 4:54 pm


____________________________

40 years a gardener and going strong with SFG.
http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-weeks-until-frost

There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t1306-other-gardening-books

Outlander is outstanding!


camprn

Forum Moderator Certified SFG Teacher

Female Posts : 13981
Join date : 2010-03-06
Age : 54
Location : Keene, NH, USA ~ Zone 5a

View user profile http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-week

Back to top Go down

Re: Soil Block Makers

Post  FamilyGardening on 3/6/2014, 5:00 pm

a quick search brought up this page with lots of threads on soil blocks Smile

https://www.google.com/search?q=soil+blocks&sitesearch=http%3A%2F%2Fsquarefoot.creatingforum.com%2F%2F

soil blocks are something Im interested in too Smile

happy gardening
rose

FamilyGardening

Female Posts : 2424
Join date : 2011-05-10
Location : Western WA

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Soil Block Makers

Post  quiltbea on 3/6/2014, 5:05 pm

I have the 3/4" mini and the 2" midi (in mapspringer's photo above) and love that there is no root disturbance when potting up.  They are great.   And no plastic pots to toss out into the landfills.  You use the wwwwhole thing!!

quiltbea

Female Posts : 4610
Join date : 2010-03-21
Age : 74
Location : Southwestern Maine Zone 5A

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Soil Block Makers

Post  Kelejan on 3/6/2014, 5:54 pm

Thank you, keepercjr, mapspringer, camprn, FamilyGardening and quiltbea. I told you it was only a cursery searching, but I am getting canny in my slightly older age and letting others to the work for me, but thank all you so much.

I now have lots of of links to read and the assurance that people are happy with the soil block makers. I had better get moving and get a couple to start with.

Just a small question: what size or combination of sizes do you find most useful?

Kelejan

Female Posts : 4220
Join date : 2011-04-24
Age : 81
Location : Castlegar, British Columbia

View user profile http://www.castlegarinkspot.ca

Back to top Go down

Re: Soil Block Makers

Post  mapspringer on 3/6/2014, 8:55 pm

Kelejan,
Personally, I don't see the use in starting in the teeny tiny blocks, then adding to the 2" blocks.  It may be the skeptic in me thinking that Johnny's wants folks to buy more equipment, but then again others may have a good reason for doing it that way.  I know from experience that using only the 2" blocks works for me... and BTW, the quality of their block maker is fan-tastic!  Maiden England   , and feels like it will last a lifetime, with proper cleaning, of course Very Happy.
I can't see doing it any other way, frankly.

Mapspringer

mapspringer

Male Posts : 66
Join date : 2012-04-01
Location : Middle Tennessee

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Soil Block Makers

Post  yolos on 3/6/2014, 9:17 pm

One reason to use the mini blocks is because they take up less space.  When germinating seeds on a heat mat, you can get a whole lot more seeds germinating using the mini blocks.  Then after they germinate, move them off the heat mat, place in the 2" blocks and move under the lights.

yolos

Female Posts : 2788
Join date : 2011-11-20
Age : 66
Location : Brooks, Ga Zone 7B/8A

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Soil Block Makers

Post  quiltbea on 3/6/2014, 9:29 pm

As you can see, its a matter of personal taste.
yolos hit the nail on the head.  Space.

I like starting seeds in the 3/4" minis.  If the seed doesn't germinate, I haven't wasted space or soil in the starting.  Another reason is I keep my apt at a low temp of 59F nites and 61-62F days.   I can put many of the minis on the heating pad covered so they can get enuf heat to germinate.
Once they've germinated, they can go into the furnace room under lights where they enjoy temps in the 62F range.  To germinate, they need it a lot warmer.  For growing, they do fine at 62-64 degrees.
I drop them into the 2" block within a day or two after I move them to the furnace room.  If they are a bit leggy, I can drop them deeper into the 2" blocks.  When they have a few true leaves I pot up to 16 oz Solo cups for many things, like cole crops, lettuce,  but my peppers and tomatoes I pot up into 2- and 3-liter air-pruner soda bottles until they can get transplanted outdoors.  Air pruners prevent girdling and make it easy to transplant with no root shock.

Here are some recently potted up to air pruner bottle pots.  I bottom water all my indoor crops.

I also cut the bottoms of Solo cups so they are air pruners, too.

Its easy to do and makes it so easy to transplant. The idea is that roots won't grow across the air space so they won't circle (girdle) in the pot.

quiltbea

Female Posts : 4610
Join date : 2010-03-21
Age : 74
Location : Southwestern Maine Zone 5A

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Soil Block Makers

Post  camprn on 3/6/2014, 9:49 pm

I don't use them but I can see their benefit if you are going into major seedling productuon.

____________________________

40 years a gardener and going strong with SFG.
http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-weeks-until-frost

There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t1306-other-gardening-books

Outlander is outstanding!


camprn

Forum Moderator Certified SFG Teacher

Female Posts : 13981
Join date : 2010-03-06
Age : 54
Location : Keene, NH, USA ~ Zone 5a

View user profile http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-week

Back to top Go down

Re: Soil Block Makers

Post  mapspringer on 3/6/2014, 10:04 pm

I see the point made by yolo and quiltbea.  I got an incredible clearance deal on some of the "seed starting packs" with the 72 cell tray, bottom tray and plastic cover.  I recycled the cell trays and have used the ribbed bottom trays to put my blocks in (as seen in pic, above.)  Filling up 2 of those trays with 2" blocks has been plenty of starts for me, but if you are not constrained by space like this, I can see where you'd want the tiny blocks (and so they all fit on a single heat mat, I presume?)

mapspringer

Male Posts : 66
Join date : 2012-04-01
Location : Middle Tennessee

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Soil Block Makers

Post  FamilyGardening on 3/6/2014, 10:09 pm

quiltbea do you cut off all of the bottom of the solo cups? or just make slits?

if you cut off all of the bottom of the cup, how does the cup stand up?

I want to use something like this for cucumbers, they seem to be the only veggie that we have problems with when transplanting and when we direct sow into the ground they always get eaten by something.....

I love the idea of buying one of the soil blocks....but I have spent to much money this year and have to figure out another way to make it work  Very Happy next year for sure if I start with one of those first and then move onto other garden goodies!

hugs
rose

FamilyGardening

Female Posts : 2424
Join date : 2011-05-10
Location : Western WA

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Soil Block Makers

Post  Turan on 3/6/2014, 11:41 pm

I made a round soil block maker with a tomato paste can. It was good for doing a few blocks. I got my 4 cube block maker second hand a bit later.

____________________________

Find more about Weather in Belgrade, MT
Click for weather forecast

Turan

Female Posts : 1995
Join date : 2012-03-29
Location : Gallatin Valley, Montana, Intermountain zone 4

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Soil Block Makers

Post  Kelejan on 3/7/2014, 12:35 am

Nobody yet has pointed out that I made the mistake of calling this thread Seed Block Makers instead of Soil Block Makers. No wonder I could not find anything when I searched.  Embarassed

PS Sanderson I sent you a PM

Kelejan

Female Posts : 4220
Join date : 2011-04-24
Age : 81
Location : Castlegar, British Columbia

View user profile http://www.castlegarinkspot.ca

Back to top Go down

Re: Soil Block Makers

Post  quiltbea on 3/7/2014, 11:44 am

Kelejan, funny how the brain works.  Once I read 'block' my mouth was up and running with info.  I guess that soil block and seed block are interchangable for me. Very Happy

Family....I don't cut off the bottoms of the cups.  I punch 4 holes in the very bottom and then cut a slit up from that hole, about 2 inches.  The weight of the soil will separate the cup enuf for air penetration.
With the plastic soda bottles I cut a narrow slit (about 1/8") since they are less apt to separate themselves from soil weight.

Is this picture clearer?

I've heard of those that make soil blockers out of square plastic containers by punching out a hole in the bottoms and using a bolt and washer or something to form the hole for the seeds base but also for pushing the block out of the container intact.  I never tried that myself.

quiltbea

Female Posts : 4610
Join date : 2010-03-21
Age : 74
Location : Southwestern Maine Zone 5A

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Soil Block Makers

Post  Sponsored content Today at 9:53 pm


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top


 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum