Hydroton is a unique lightweight expanded clay aggregate (LECA) made in Europe. It is similar to other LECA stone products known as Aliflor, Hydroton, Hydrokorrel, Hydrocks, Hydro Corn, Hydro Pebbles, Lecarocks, Leca stone and Hydrocorn grow rocks. It is ecologically sustainable as it is derived from a plentiful source, clay. Size ranges from about 1/4" - 5/8"). The clay is formed into pellets and fired in 1200 degree rotary kilns which causes the clay to expand inside like popcorn which makes it very porous.
Orchids love that porosity to wrap roots around. Advantages of Hydroton include free draining qualities, pH Neutrality, and they can be reused. The clay is formed into pellets and fired in rotary kilns which causes the clay to expand inside like popcorn which makes it very porous. Hydroton is uneven in shape and size providing good support for orchid roots. Advantages of Hydroton include free draining qualities, pH Neutrality, and they can be reused. Hydroton is dust free and inert while promoting good oxygen levels at the root zone. Hydroton is also known by the name HydroLECA.
Can unused mix or media be stored for later use?
Absolutely yes! Because we make all of our mixes fresh, the container of mix or media you get will usually have some moisture in it. This is perfectly normal and is because we use water in the processing and preparing of many of the ingredients. It is necessary to dry out any mix or media before storage so it stays fresh.
What is the best way to dry and store mix or media?
We recommend removing the mix/media from the container it comes in and allowing it to get bone dry. This can be done on a cookie sheet or other suitable surface and may take a few days. Once dry, it can be placed back in the original container (box and/or bag) and stored in a cool dry location. Leave a small opening in the bag for air to get in and check periodically.
How long can stored mix/media last?
Dry mix can be stored for many months or longer depending on the location it is in and how dry it is kept.
When I am ready to use the mix/media after it has been stored, what is the best way to get it ready?
Uniformly moisten the mix/media by rinsing at the sink in a colander or similar container with drainage. It is not necessary to soak overnight. All rePotme mixes and medias are already prepared for immediate use when received, but it is always best practice to uniformly rinse before using.
What if I see any kind of green algae or mildew form on the mix or media ( stored or in bag or in pots with plants)?
Algae and other natural growth is not uncommon on growing media that is damp and that is exposed to sunlight especially. Normally this is not harmful to the plant as these elements are often present in a natural growth setting too. Rinsing with clean water can often be all that is needed to remove this and we recommend a regular monthly application of a mild solution of Physan 20 for this purpose as well (mix at a rate of 1 tsp per gallon). Keeping containers and mix/media clean and fresh is best as it reduces premature breakdown of material and allows more light to enter while helping us to see and monitor plant development at the root zone when using clear pots.