What is Coir Pith?
Coco peat, also known as coir pith, coir dust, or simply coir, is made by processing coconut husks. The coir dust is obtained from the husks by separating the long fibres.
The speciality of coir pith is its ability to hold large quantities of water just like a sponge. This allows it to be used in horticulture as a soil-less substrate.
After the coir dust is extracted from the husk, it is then sieved to remove the last remaining fibres.
The coir dust is washed in order to remove chemicals such as potassium, sodium and chloride.
The salt content is also reduced to an EC < 1.0 mS/cm [1:1.5 water extraction method].
If required, the coir is buffered.This involves introducing, calcium [2+] in order to remove monovalent positive ions such as potassium [1+] from the coconut complex. This allows us to remove elements bound in the coconut complex in addition to the water soluble elements removed while washing.
The pith is dried to remove excess moisture after washing.
The coir is then compressed to 5kg blocks and prepared to be shipped. By simply adding water, the end-user can decompress the pith.1 kg of compressed coir pith will expand up to 15 litres of moist pith.
Uses of Coir Pith
- It can be used as a substitute to peat, as it is free of bacteria and most fungal spores and can be produced in an environmentally friendly manner.
- It is mixed with sand and compost, to make potting soil.
- It is used as a growing medium for strawberries, vegetables and flowers.
- It is a great medium for hydroponics or container plant growing.
Advantages of Coir Pith:
- Holds up to 9 times its weight in water
- Has a moderate pH – 5.6 – 6
- Excellent air holding capacity
- Contains nutrients – Nitrogen, Potassium, Phosphorus, Calcium, Copper and Magnesium.
- It is reusable for up to 4-5 years.
- Very easy to use.
- Has natural rooting hormones
- Antibacterial and anti-fungal properties.