Bonsai Study Group Forum

General Category => General Bonsai Discussion => Topic started by: Judy on October 06, 2013, 09:40 PM

Title: Akadama differences
Post by: Judy on October 06, 2013, 09:40 PM
I need to ask the forum members who use akadama how different the akadama labeled "super hard" is from the regular akadama. I've heard that its too hard to be much different than lava.  I am getting ready to change my soils over to an akadama base, so would like to have experienced input to compare these two types.  I've thought about doing half and half.  Thanks for any answers!
Title: Re: Akadama differences
Post by: John Kirby on October 06, 2013, 11:30 PM
Super hard isa relative term for which there is no empirical standard. There was aversion of Double Red Line akadama that was high fired like pottery, not as high buy certainly higher than the temps needed to "sterilize" the akadama. It is my understanding that the Double Red Line brand has been purchased and improved practices including heating to at least 250C and improved dust removal is used.

I purchased "extra hard" akadama from Hollow Creek Bonsai and used it this year, it is a little softer than the old double red line, but it is quite good. I think the folks who export akadama to the western markets, in collaboration with the importers, use words like extra hard to overcome peoples' fears of some of the really soft junk that has been imported by some in the past.
Title: Re: Akadama differences
Post by: Judy on October 07, 2013, 08:39 AM
Thank you John, the Hollow Creek soil is what I'm looking at, so that is perfect!.
Title: Re: Akadama differences
Post by: coh on October 07, 2013, 05:27 PM
Judy, don't know if this will be helpful or not. I have just started experimenting with akadama during the past year. I got a couple of bags from hollow creek. This stuff is definitely  NOT like ceramic or turface in terms of hardness. Turface particles cannot be broken with a fingernail (for the most part), but the akadama (dry from the bag) can be broken fairly easily (though some particles are harder, they still can be split).

I don't have experience with other brands or hardness types, and haven't used this long enough to know how well it holds up in the pot in our cold climate. However, it seems more and more people in this area are using akadama so it must hold up reasonably well.

Title: Re: Akadama differences
Post by: Judy on October 19, 2013, 07:52 PM
Thank you Chris.  Guess we'll be finding out!