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The growing large plants, outdoors, thread...

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    The growing large plants, outdoors, thread...

    Hello Tom

    I was wondering if you could take the time and talk to us about your soil mix, perhaps a recipe you might use?

    For example could you explain to us the amount of soil and mix you use for one of these containers you make. Also any idea of the size?

    Thanks - Jenn

    Hi Jenn,

    I've played with a lot of different soil recipes over the years, 1rst year new soil mixes, as well as yearly additives. Here's a very simple mix that is well proven and I am comfortable recommending for those large outdoor containers. It gives about 50 cubic feet or just over 300 gallons (dry U.S), and fills a 6ft diameter container to a depth of about 18inches - perfectly.

    25 bags black gold potting soil (1.5cf ea)

    4 bags stutzman farms chicken manure (1 cf ea)

    1 bag perlite (4 cf ea)

    1 bag (50 lbs) bonemeal (steamed, not precipitated)

    1/2 bag gypsum (aprox 1/2 cf) - Edit -> 1/2 of a 40 lb bag (20lbs).

    Mix well, water thoroughly, let rest for 2-3 weeks minimum, transplant, and stand back

    Best Regards,



      Very good

      Thanks Tom


        wow! jenn, so happy you asked this question. have been thinking all day about getting on and looking for anywhere tom posted his mix. this solves some problems.

        Tom: thanks fort this straightforward and easy to follow mix! Especially after re-reading about your huuuuge plants, I've just been thinking and thinking about what your soil mix could be. THanks for outloning the container size too.

        WOuld it be safe to say that a container size you mentioned with this mix and appropriate airflow, feeding, and sunlight, and genetics could let someone end up with a 10 Lb plant?

        Been thinking about searching for a big yielding super silver haze or afganhi/haze cross and shooting for a few nice large plants inside a greenhouse. If you happen to put out your SCCB or would consider a SCCB/haze cross, i'd be on that quicker than you can say boo.
        600w organic grow


          Thank you for the detailed answer Tom. Now if we could, lets discuss your containers. It appears that your containers have a six foot diameter and a depth of 18 inches.

          Do you leave the bottom of the containers open to the ground below or do you use the black tarp to cover the bottom? Also have you used chicken wire or something of that nature to prevent animals from working their way into the containers from the bottom?

          Could you also tell us what type of cage you use to form the container and what exactly is the black linning you use.

          Thank you for the time - Jenn


            just wanted to pop back in and ask if you're regularly using any nutrient teas or any kind of supplemental nutrients with that mix along the way? wondering specifically if this is a mix that you use for pretty much all the strains you grow or if its designed more for one of your favorites or something.

            again, thanks for your time and the info Tom. It's much appreciated.
            600w organic grow


              wow! amazing pictures - i love mother nature


                First tracks,

                Yes, what you posted is a recipe for giants plants. SSH and Afghanistan/Haze crosses are imo good hunting grounds for this type of plant we want. I hope to locate the proper combination in clone form from within an Afghanistan/Haze F2 and spread that around for these types of grows, as well as have that (F2 gen) be the start of a new inbred line I'd like to create for indoor/outdoor.

                The mix is for outdoor use only, for one we wouldn't want to use chicken manure indoors with a quicker cycle. If your water is good, plain water with this mix until budding (at which time I like to slowly add bloom formula, maxing out at week 4-5 or so with 2-3 consecutive fertigations at full recommended strength) seems fine. I had very high pH water source (8+) so I used Earth Juice grow/cat at the rate of aprox 1/4 tsp per gal on every watering to lower irrigation pH to 6.5. Folk who have no H2O pH issues, use plain water in this mix with excellent results. Also, If my H2O pH was closer to 7, I might go 50/50 gypsum/lime instead of straight gypsum.

                Folks who are checking out the numbers on this mix will no doubt note that it is high in Calcium.

                Hi Jenn,

                Yes, 6'x18". The goal here for me is to tend well the soil depth in the area from about 1"-12" deep, this is where maximum potential (Oxygen levels, temp etc) lies regarding a productive soil. While tending this depth correctly (in regards to irrigation frequency), roots deeper than 24" would likely get culled off due to insufficient Oxygen levels anyway - so 18" soil depth is about right imo.

                Some of these have 1/4" "hardware cloth" laid down first to keep critters from burrowing up into them, some don't. Some have this black breathable "ground cover" covering the entire bottom, some are left mostly open on the bottom - it all works. I have also used heavier "shade cloth" in the past instead of the ground cover, the ground cover holds up a little better/lasts longer. I use a heavy gauge "field fencing" for the containers and I think it comes in rolls that are 32" high, then I fold them to aprox 2' high. Cut to 20', + a little overlap at the connection = 6' containers.

                A definite improvement is to also then wrap these things in burlap, so you don't have heat culling your roots before they reach the edges of the containers. -T


                  Great info, Tom. Thank you.

                  Must say I'm surprised by the amount of bone meal you add. 50# per planter? And bloom nutes as Maybe I'll add more in future mixes and see how it goes.

                  I made planters this year in the manner you described, though mine are 5' across. Used landscape fabric that is kinda silver. High albedo, but I'm sure those roots still get warm.


                    Tom: what can I say other than a whopping thanks! I can't rep you anymore at the moment, but will spread whenever i can.

                    This forum is awesome I have to say. Not only does our community get access to information about your genetics, we also get a master grower to guide us along.

                    Props on not getting upset at me/editing out my post refferring to genetics from other sources. I know that can be a tricky/touchy issue with many breeders, but I really appreciated how you're not afraid to let people know what might work from other breeders as well.
                    Like I said before though, if you do get out something with some nice big potential again such as the crosses you mentioned in your previous post or even a newer version of SCCB or an SCCB/haze cross I, and expect many many others, would be all over it in an instant.

                    I'm not reinvesting in new genetics until november or so, and can wait that 12 weeks + for your haze, but whenever you release, if I have cash, I'll be down for buying up some stock.

                    Again, thanks so much for your knowledge, genetics, and overall contributions to the community.

                    way to get your breeder forum off to a strong start!

                    be well

                    600w organic grow


                      Tom can we switch over to plant protection

                      I see you use fencing to prevent animal attacks such as deer, but can you chime in on any outdoor insect soaps or something of that nature that you find very helpful in protecting your crop. A favorite perhaps?

                      Thanks - Jenn


                        This thread is already epic.


                          Beautiful, thanks!


                            Is bonemeal sold already steamed or must I do that myself? That mix is simple as fuck, hope to use it this year.


                              Originally posted by ocean99 View Post
                              Is bonemeal sold already steamed or must I do that myself? That mix is simple as fuck, hope to use it this year.

                              You can buy it that way -