Bonsai Study Group Forum

General Category => General Bonsai Discussion => Topic started by: Judy on August 27, 2013, 10:31 AM

Title: Dragon Spring soil mix
Post by: Judy on August 27, 2013, 10:31 AM
I wonder if anyone has used the Dragon Spring blended soil mix?  It looks like a pretty good blend, I am specifically interested if anyone knows if the akadama in it, is as hard as the "super hard" akadama.  It is listed as heat treated hard akadama. 
Title: Re: Dragon Spring soil mix
Post by: Owen Reich on August 27, 2013, 11:22 PM
The bags I've opened and checked turned into "super powder".......  :-[
Can't speak from experience as it's a new product or at least a new label.  Anyone used it yet?  The high heat treatment for this specific brand IMHO turned it into rice crispy powder balls.  Maybe it's just me but I was not enthused.
Title: Re: Dragon Spring soil mix
Post by: Judy on August 28, 2013, 07:53 AM
Not exactly what I'm looking for in a soil...
But good to know. 
Title: Re: Dragon Spring soil mix
Post by: John Kirby on August 28, 2013, 08:40 AM
I bought 50 or 75? Bags of the medium conifer mix last spring, I also purchased 25 bags of Akadama from Fred. The Akadama is heat treated like the old double red line Akadama. However, it is somewhat softer than the old stuff. The premix is interesting, I have been sifting the soil down in to three sizes and dust, I then blend in sifted and sized lava. Unlike Clay King or Aoki blends, this soil needs to be heavily sifted for sizing at least.

The heating to 300 degrees C eliminates live organisms in the Akadama and allows t to pass USDA APHIS inspection.
Title: Re: Dragon Spring soil mix
Post by: Judy on August 28, 2013, 09:39 AM
Thanks, sounds like a lot of work as opposed to just blending it yourself.  Too bad Fred doesn't carry lava as well.
Title: Re: Dragon Spring soil mix
Post by: Owen Reich on August 28, 2013, 08:06 PM
By means am I saying the whole lot imported of the dragon stuff is bad.  My initial impression was not good but I have only opened about 5 bags.

Without getting into a soil war, from my experience Aoki Blend is my blend of choice.  If I find softer Akadama for sale, I'll buy it and use it for maples and other deciduous trees; cut with lava pumice and granite grit.  I just tone down the amount of Akadama if its super soft.

I tend to mix or adapt a given mix for individual trees when repotting.  Hard to explain online.
Title: Re: Dragon Spring soil mix
Post by: Judy on August 28, 2013, 08:49 PM
I'd love to use the Aoki, but it's not available for under $40. per bag as far as I've found, and that's before shipping.  I am looking to get components at this point.  I can do the components for about $40 per bag shipped. 

Unless someone out there can point me to available stock of AOKI???? Would love to find some affordable...

But if the dragon spring is going to have any sizable quantity of dust that to me is waste. So although the dragon spring is slightly less it's probably not worth it with the waste involved.
Title: Re: Dragon Spring soil mix
Post by: John Kirby on August 28, 2013, 10:13 PM
No soil war here, I bought it because it is here. Let me be clear, my sifting is not so much for dust,it is for the variable particle size. I want as much particle uniformity as I can get, for me Clay King is the best, but it is a personal choice.
Title: Re: Dragon Spring soil mix
Post by: Judy on August 29, 2013, 07:43 AM
Thanks for the clarification. No war at all... just getting into an akadama based soil for the first time.  So all info is good for me.
Title: Re: Dragon Spring soil mix
Post by: Chrisl on August 29, 2013, 12:39 PM
John,  how much do a ?# of Clay King cost out of St. Louis?  I'm getting tired of the whole process to track down soil ingredients each yr.  So much less a hassle to buy something like Clay King and just sift for size.
Title: Re: Dragon Spring soil mix
Post by: John Kirby on August 29, 2013, 01:40 PM
Try cass bonsai, not sure what their retail price is, lastime I bought Clay King there I bought 250 bags or so.email Milt and ask him, they are extremely air on pricing.
Title: Re: Dragon Spring soil mix
Post by: Chrisl on August 29, 2013, 04:50 PM
Thanks John, I will.