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Thread: Peat smells like sulfur

  1. #9
    nimbulan's Avatar
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    Feb 2014
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    I understand your position there. I've read that sterilization tends to cause the media to degrade faster.

    Finding space to dry all that peat out could be an issue though. It's winter in Oregon which means it'll stop raining about...June. And I certainly don't want that sulfur smell indoors.

  2. #10
    War. War never changes. Est's Avatar
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    Apr 2004
    Pasadena, CA
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    I would worry about airing it out on an as-needed basis. If you can keep the bulk from sitting wet, that's great, but I don't think that sitting anaerobic in the meantime is an issue. Much of your peat had probably been sitting anaerobic for many, many years before if ever got to you. And yeah, beyond any media breakdown as a result of sterilizing with heat, I just don't generally see the point. It seems like a lot of work to avoid moss, and I don't think that avoiding the native community of microbes is necessarily desirable. Soil microbes tend bounce back from significant abuse incredibly quickly -I've measured methane production (another anaerobic byproduct) within minutes after wetting up soil that'd been parched for months!- and in the meantime they're not doing anyone any harm.

    In this instance I'd want the microbes around anyway because they're a useful indicator: if the media in your pots starts to stink, you know that you're overwatering and/or your media isn't "breathing" sufficiently.

    Hope that helps!
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