Soil Mix Well Tested for Superior Vegetable Yields

Soil Mix Well Tested for Superior Vegetable Yields

Greenhouse Gardening: The Ideal Solution for Plant Trials and Commercial Growing

NutriHarvest® Soil Mixes were tested for a popular green in a greenhouse. Greenhouses are the top choice for conducting plant trials and growing plants commercially, especially in cooler climates. Greenhouses offer a controlled environment that's perfect for accurate plant research and year-round cultivation. Whether you're a researcher conducting plant trials or a commercial grower looking to produce a variety of marketable plants, greenhouses provide the protection and consistent conditions needed for success. Explore the benefits of greenhouse gardening for reliable and efficient plant growth.

Soil Mix Performance: A Greenhouse Experiment in Summer 2018

In an experiment conducted in May 2018, a plant and soil expert at an agricultural university explored the effectiveness of organic soil mixes for growing lettuce in a greenhouse setting. Commonly consumed lettuce (Black Seeded Simpson (USDA Organic; No GMO) by Botanical Interests) was selected for this trial. This trial aimed to find out how well lettuce would grow in different types of soil mixes, including a specially prepared organic mix versus a popular commercial brand found in stores.

Experiment Overview: Greenhouse Environment for Optimal Growth

The greenhouse used for this experiment benefited from natural sunlight and was also equipped with artificial lighting to maintain a consistent 16-hour photo-period each day. This setup ensured that the lettuce plants received an optimal amount of light, simulating the perfect growing conditions.

The Soil Mix Trial: NutriHarvest® vs. Commercial Brand

NutriHarvest® Soil Mixes

Fig.1. Trial progression: A – initial sprouts on day 6; B – plants on day 14; C – plants on day 28. (Row 1 - Commercial Market Brand Soil Mix;  Row 2: NutriHarvest® Enhanced Soil ; Row 3- NutriHarvest® All Purpose Soil Mix)

NutriHarvest® Soil Mixes


Fig. 2. Trial progression day 36: Batch A: Commercial Market Brand Soil Mix. Batch B: NutriHarvest® Soil Mixes

The experiment began with planting lettuce seeds in three different soil mixes. The expert observed the first sprouts on day 4. By day 11, it was clear that the lettuce growing in the NutriHarvest® Enhanced Soil Mix was thriving better than those in the NutriHarvest® All Purpose Soil Mix, and significantly better than the lettuce in the Commercial Market Brand Soil Mix. This trend continued until the plants were ready for harvest on day 36.

Results: Visual Evidence Backs Superior Growth in NutriHarvest® Mixes

NutriHarvest® Soil Mixes

Photographic evidence and measurements of above-ground biomass weights showed that lettuce plants grown in NutriHarvest® soil mixes outperformed those grown in the commercial soil mix. However, despite visual differences, there was no statistically significant difference in the final dry weights of lettuce between the washed and unwashed NutriHarvest® mixtures, though plants in the washed mixture appeared healthier. Both NutriHarvest® treatments significantly outperformed the commercial soil mix.

Conclusions: Choosing the Right Soil Mix Matters

This experiment highlights the importance of selecting the right soil mix for growing lettuce:

  • Lettuce plants grow better in NutriHarvest® soil mixes than in the commercial soil mix.
  • Despite observable differences, there's no statistically significant difference in the growth results between the washed and unwashed NutriHarvest® soil mixtures. Yet, visually, the lettuce in the NutriHarvest® Enhanced Soil Mix seemed healthier.
  • Overall, the NutriHarvest® soil mixes significantly outperformed the commercial soil mix, indicating that choosing a high-quality soil mix can lead to healthier and potentially more productive lettuce plants in your greenhouse.

By understanding the impact of soil quality on plant growth, gardeners and farmers can make informed decisions about the materials they use, leading to better crop yields and more successful gardening projects.

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