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Author Topic: Seramis- clay granules  (Read 11433 times)

Maggi Young

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Seramis- clay granules
« on: January 31, 2011, 02:23:08 PM »
As I understand it, this stuff is able to be 'cleaned' for re-use : my questions are.... how does one clean the stuff and how many times is this possible and how many of you can report prolonged use of it as a potting medium with good results?

Reason is, we've just had two tonnes of sand and two tonnes of 5 to 6mm  grit  delivered and after moving the first tonne, I'm thinking that another way MUST be easier!
 I was prompted to this Seramis questions by seeing Tony Willis write about his Frit. experiments ( after Paul Cumbleton's Log entry on the material here : http://www.srgc.org.uk/smf/index.php?topic=6490.msg182693#msg182693

I know that Seramis is expensive, but if it is truly re-useable then it might be something to consider when my back and that of the BD, gives out entirely and this four tonnes of ingredients are used up!
(Thankfully the other three bag loads are on the side of the drive and need not be moved immediately. Phew! What a relief!  ::) )

« Last Edit: November 01, 2012, 05:15:45 PM by Maggi Young »
Margaret Young in Aberdeen, North East Scotland Zone 7 -ish!

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David Pilling

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Re: Seramis- clay granules
« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2011, 02:55:00 PM »
Paul's log is at:

http://www.srgc.org.uk/logs/logdir/2011Jan261296057047Log_1_of_2011.pdf

At Home Bargains the latest thing are big bags of silica gel cat litter.

David Pilling at the seaside in North West England.

ArnoldT

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Re: Seramis- clay granules
« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2011, 03:02:16 PM »
We have similar products here going by the name of Axis or Turface.

It's expanded clay products used on golf courses and baseball infileds.  Good at absorbing water to help surfaces dry.  Also used for fuel spills.
Arnold Trachtenberg
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Paul Cumbleton

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Re: Seramis- clay granules
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2011, 05:21:50 PM »
Hi Maggi,
I re-use small amounts by sieving to get rid of any bits of old root etc, then to sterilize it I moisten it a little and put it in the microwave on full power until it is really steaming. Somewhat larger amounts I put in trays in a hot oven. Both ways seem to work fine.....as long as whoever controls your kitchen accepts unorthodox uses of equipment (and some smell)!!

Of course this only works if you grow stuff in pure seramis. Those who use it as just one ingredient of a mix presumably use new stuff each time.

Paul
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Maggi Young

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Re: Seramis- clay granules
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2011, 05:32:28 PM »
Thanks Paul..... I'm getting less enthusiastic by the minute. The smells I like in the kitchen are those of delicious food cooking.
Margaret Young in Aberdeen, North East Scotland Zone 7 -ish!

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John Aipassa

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Re: Seramis- clay granules
« Reply #5 on: February 04, 2011, 01:18:57 PM »
Thanks Paul..... I'm getting less enthusiastic by the minute. The smells I like in the kitchen are those of delicious food cooking.

Hi Maggi,

Personally I have not re-used seramis yet. But I believe sterilization is not required. According to my information you can re-use seramis endlessly without sterilizing. A good rinse with hot or boiling water will clean the stuff sufficiently.

I use it in my garden to "improve" my soil for my Cypripedium orchids. It is great stuff but in this way I will probably not re-use it and leave it in the garden soil.

Best,
John Aipassa, Aalten, The Netherlands
z7, sandy soil, maritime climate


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Maggi Young

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Re: Seramis- clay granules
« Reply #6 on: February 04, 2011, 01:34:26 PM »
Thank you John.
Margaret Young in Aberdeen, North East Scotland Zone 7 -ish!

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johnw

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Re: Seramis- clay granules
« Reply #7 on: February 04, 2011, 02:39:33 PM »
after moving the first tonne, I'm thinking that another way MUST be easier!

There's a much easier way Maggi, have Ian move it instead.  ;)

Seriously now, is Seramis - aka Turface in North America - the same as Lecadan in Denmark? Seems to me when I received a plant - Shortia as I recall - many years ago that was grown in Lecadan solely the particles were very porous looking and less like pressed clay - i.e kitty litter.  ??? ???

I tried incorporating turface into a bulb mix (mainly around the bulb) thinking it would draw excess moisture away from the bulb. Well it probably did that until it got saturated and this resulted in too much dampness around the bulb with disastrous results. Coincidentally I have just read Paul C.'s excellent article on drainage in pots. I have made the fatal mistake of making a coarser grittier mix in the upper half of the pot in the region of bulb.  You'd think after all these years one would have at least figured a decent mix for bulbs especially Galanthus, but not I.  Amaryllidaceae are the crankiest I find, must be the eternal dampness of our coastal air (dense fog).

johnw
« Last Edit: February 04, 2011, 02:59:28 PM by johnw »
John in coastal Nova Scotia

John Aipassa

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Re: Seramis- clay granules
« Reply #8 on: February 04, 2011, 02:59:00 PM »
after moving the first tonne, I'm thinking that another way MUST be easier!

There's a much easier way Maggi, have Ian move it instead.  ;)

Seriously now, is Seramis - aka Turface in North America - the same as Lecadan in Denmark? Seems to me when I received a plant - Shortia as I recall - many years ago that was grown in Lecadan solely the particles were very porous looking and like pressed clay - i.e kitty litter.  ??? ???

I tried incorporating turface into a bulb mix (mainly around the bulb) thinking it would draw excess moisture away from the bulb. Well it probably did that until it got saturated and this resulted in too much dampness around the bulb with disastrous results. Coincidentally I have just read Paul C.'s excellent article on drainage in pots. I have made the fatal mistake of making a coarser grittier mix in the upper half of the pot in the region of bulb.  You'd think after all these years one would have at least figured a decent mix for bulbs especially Galanthus, but not I.  Amaryllidaceae are the crankiest I find, must be the eternal dampness of our coastal air (dense fog).

johnw

John,

Lecadan is broken clay pebbles and not the same as Seramis. Seramis is not used as cat litter either. Way to expensive.
Seramis is made of special clay originating from the Westerwald region in Germany. It can absorb a lot of water.

Cheers,
John Aipassa, Aalten, The Netherlands
z7, sandy soil, maritime climate


"In all things of nature there is something of the marvelous." - Aristotle

johnw

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Re: Seramis- clay granules
« Reply #9 on: February 04, 2011, 03:06:44 PM »
Thanks for the clarification John. You may note I had gone back to my posting while you posted and changed to Lecadan was "less like kitty litter" (than the fine grade of turface here).  Have you tried using Lecadan the same way as Seramis? The Shortias were certainly well grown and settled into a bark peat mix without a hitch. Theey were mainly larger and looked like spheres split in half with a bubbled interior.

johnw
John in coastal Nova Scotia

John Aipassa

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Re: Seramis- clay granules
« Reply #10 on: February 04, 2011, 03:30:21 PM »
Thanks for the clarification John. You may note I had gone back to my posting while you posted and changed to Lecadan was "less like kitty litter" (than the fine grade of turface here).  Have you tried using Lecadan the same way as Seramis? The Shortias were certainly well grown and settled into a bark peat mix without a hitch. Theey were mainly larger and looked like spheres split in half with a bubbled interior.

johnw

Hi John,

No, I have never used Lecadan the same way as Seramis. Clay pebbles broken or not broken are only used by me as a bottom layer in large pots or plant holes in the garden for drainage only. Seramis' or any other calcinated clay granulate's (e.g. Turface) ability to absorb water is far more superior when compared to Lecadan. I have no experience using Seramis as a single potting medium for a plant, but I know it is used by many other enthusiasts as a single medium for all kinds of plants.
John Aipassa, Aalten, The Netherlands
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Maren

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Re: Seramis- clay granules
« Reply #11 on: February 04, 2011, 10:42:13 PM »
Hi Maggi,

may I ask, what do you intend to use the Seramis for and why would you want to re-use it?

I use the stuff all the time for different things. If you tell me what you intend to do with it, I can be more helpful. :)
Maren in Marlow, Buckinghamshire, United Kingdom - Zone 8

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Maggi Young

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Re: Seramis- clay granules
« Reply #12 on: February 04, 2011, 11:12:46 PM »
I don't "intend" to use it as such, Maren.... it was just that on reading various forumists' reports on using it for Fritillarias in pots I got to thinking that it might, if re-useable, be an option for a replacement potting medium ( or even one ingredient of a future potting mix) when we get too motheaten to be able to shift the tonnes of sand and gravel we need for our existing potting mix.

Ian bagged four tonnes of sand and gravel and then we've unloaded it from those bags ,  barrowed it and reloaded it to storage bays over the last few days. We've both decided we're getting past it - that works out to moving a lot of tonnes!
The prospect of a medium that could be cleaned and re-used was appealing.

But....the price would be prohibitive for us, I'm sure.  Ian says when we can't cope with the  potting mix ingredients we'll just have to make ssure all the bulbs are out in the garden., where they'll have to take their chances.... poor little devils, I hope it's later rather than sooner  ::)
« Last Edit: August 29, 2019, 12:24:21 PM by Maggi Young »
Margaret Young in Aberdeen, North East Scotland Zone 7 -ish!

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Martin Baxendale

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Re: Seramis- clay granules
« Reply #13 on: February 04, 2011, 11:42:14 PM »
I use pumice grit, which makes my compost for small snowdrops (seedlings, bulbils from chips etc) very well drained and aerated but also water retentive. Small bulbs love it. And it weighs so little you can pick up large bags with one hand quite easily. Lot more expensive than ordinary grit though. I also use small baked clay particles from the same supplier, called Moler - supposed to do the same sort of thing as pumice grit, give good drainage and aeration but also good water retention and also said to hold nutrients well.
Martin Baxendale, Gloucestershire, UK.

Diane Whitehead

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Re: Seramis- clay granules
« Reply #14 on: February 16, 2011, 05:06:35 AM »
Quote
Ian bagged four tonnes of sand and gravel and then we've unloaded it from those bags ,  barrowed it and reloaded it to storage bays over the last few days.

A stone slinger can put sand, gravel, mulch, etc into otherwise inaccesible areas.

Do you have them over there?

Or your bags could be lifted up and over with a rented crane.
Diane Whitehead        Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
cool mediterranean climate  warm dry summers, mild wet winters  70 cm rain,   sandy soil

 


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