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RE: hypertuffa troughs and ways to make it neutral...

Thanks, Donna and Marge!  If I can't get it done one way, I'll get the other
and take care of the trough.  Oddly enough, granboy Brenden and I did an
"experiment" with a chemical kit I got him not long ago and we used aluminum
sulphate.  I'll go take a peek and see if we used it all up or whether I
need to purchase some.

Bonnie (SW OH - zone 5)  

PS  I hope everyone has a great day despite any inclement weather out there!
It's 14 here now, but at least we don't have much wind with it (less
wind-chill factor.)

-----Original Message-----
From: owner-gardenchat@hort.net [mailto:owner-gardenchat@hort.net] On Behalf
Of Marge Talt
Sent: Tuesday, January 20, 2004 12:33 AM
To: gardenchat@hort.net
Subject: Re: [CHAT] carnivorous plants was: Clivia Golden Dragon

> From: Bonnie & Bill Morgan <wmorgan972@ameritech.net>
> Ohhhh, it is hypertuffa!  Is there something I can line it with? 
What is
> the best media to use for a bog container?

As Donna said, rubber roofing (AKA EPDM), but that might be hard to
handle in a small trough as it's thick.  I just used plain old 6 mil
poly to line my minibog; put some old carpet under it to prevent
rocks and roots from puncturing it.  It has NO lifespan when exposed
to air and sun, but will last many years if completely covered.

In a small trough, poly would probably do the trick; the hard part
would be the top, where it would likely be exposed unless you figure
some way to cover it.

As for Ceres' question about using vinegar water to rinse it to stop
the leaching...I have no personal experience here as I've not worked
with hypertuffa; have only one pot made of it, given me by a friend. 
However, I saved the following 2001 Alpine-L  post from Bob Llewelyn,
Shropshire UK regarding acidifying hypertuffa:

"Apply or soak in a soluble sulphate solution. Aluminium sulphate is
probably best but ammonium sulphate is also good and more easily
obtainable by gardeners. Any free calcium salts will rapidly form
calcium sulphate (gypsum) which is neutral and almost insoluble. Hose
it down before use. Don't be tempted to use acids. Using a
waterproofing agent and/or bonding agent in the hypertufa mix
considerably reduces leaching and makes the hypertufa much more frost

"By the way, application of soluble sulphate salts is the best way of
lowering the pH of soils and certainly much better than applying
vinegar which was advocated by somebody on Alpine-L recently.
Applying elemental sulphur also works but is much slower."

Bonnie, you might try this soaking method and not worry about lining
it unless it has really free drainage, which you don't want for a
bog....might be less trouble in the long run.

Marge Talt, zone 7 Maryland
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