See what happens when you grow vegetables in compost & sand


hello friends welcome to California
gardening In today’s episode we will look at how to grow plants in a sand and compost based potting
medium now it’s a cheap potting medium but
does it really work? well let’s find out [music] now I’ve chosen different kinds of
plants for this test so the first plant that we will beand act looking at is radish so radish being a root vegetable is an
interesting test so let’s see how it performs in this
potting medium so to prepare this container mix we will be using play sand and perlite and compost and you can see the
proportions on your screen right now and this is what we will be using for
all our tests so after the kids are done playing with
the play sand at home there’s a lot of leftover sand so
we decided to use that play sand and put it to good use so what kind of
sand would you use for this potting mix now you could use any kind of sand the
only sand that you wanna stay away from is sands that are found next to saltwater sources like Oceans or sea the sand that’s
found around them on beaches are not good because they
contain a lot of salts now i added the perlite for
better drainage however you can skip the perlite if
you want to so as you can see here the radish plant
is growing really well it has very nice leaves, a strong stem and hopefully there are radishes growing
below the soil too. So it’s now time for us to harvest our
radish and see how it looks like now it was a little difficult for me to
pull this radish out of the container which was quite surprising and let’s
look at how our raddish looks like that’s our first one and I think it’s
pretty well sized and its a good-looking radish and let’s go
ahead and harvest the other one as well and as you can see this is also a nice
big radish that we could harvest now overall I was very happy with the
quality of radishes that I got now as you can see here the soil is a
little dry and this is one of the downsides I would
say to growing in sand is that the soil
dries out pretty quickly and that’s why you need to make sure
that the soil is moist all around you can see the worms love this container mix too
so this combination of sand and compost as well as the added perlite
really makes a good potting medium so what’s our conclusion for radish I
think be the radish grows really well in this container mix and as you can see the radish looks
great and it also tasted very nice so root vegetables like radish are a good candidate to grow in a sand and compost base potting
medium no plant test is complete without a
tomato plant so what I’ve done is I’ve used the same
container that I had planted the radish and I planted this tomato plant this is the Juliet hybrid variety of
tomato which is one of my favorites and as you can see here I’ve added a little
bit of mulch on the top and this much really helps retain a lot
of moisture in the soil so this tomato plant started
with some really good growth nice leaves strong stems and it
continued to grow throughout the growing season in a very nice way and it also started producing fruit at
the right time so the fruits this plant produced were of
great quality as you can see here and they also tasted very nice so overall this plant grew really well in
this container mix now I noticed that the soil was drying
out a lot on hotter days So I added a drip irrigation system and
that really helped retain a lot of moisture as well so let’s go ahead and harvest some tomatoes
from this plant and as you can see these tomatoes are
not only good looking they also tasted really good so
overall this plant was producing some high quality fruits throughout the
growing season and hence I can conclude that this
potting max this sand and compost based potting mix
worked really well for this tomato plant as well you can see all these vine ripened
tomatoes really good and really delicious all
being harvested from this tomato plant and as I
mentioned I was able to harvest a lot these tomatoes right throughout the
growing season and the plants are still growing it’s been three months now and the plants
continue to flourish Now the next plant that will be testing in this
potting mix is Cilantro which is a herb now the cilantro
seedlings were able to emerge very easily and it was a tough job keeping the
seedlings moist as you can see the potting mix got
very dry on hotter days and it was tough to keep
up with the watering all the time so yes with this sand based potting mix you will need to water your plants a
little bit more than usual but as long as the seedlings were
watered well they had no problems keeping up with
the growth and they showed a lot of
vigor when they were growing now once the seedlings emerge one of the
tasks that we need to do is thin the seedlings now
what I realized was that in a sand based potting mix it
was a lot easier to thin the seedlings because they were easy to pull out and once the
soil was moist I was easily able to pull out the
seedlings and thin them now for cilantro I usually keep two or at the most three seedlings per location however I prefer to keep
just one as much as I can if I have to keep 2
I’ll keep 2 but I stick to one for most of the
plants including cilantro now some of you might remember my
earlier video on growing cilantro and in that video a lot of you had asked me
how I grew cilantro so easily now the results are in front of you it’s a
simple sand based potting mix cilantro has grown really well the leaves are really nice and I was
able to harvest these leaves several times and they keep coming
back and just look at the quality of the
cilantro leaves they are really good and fresh cilantro is one of the most
amazing things you can grow in your garden and as you can see you do not even
need a lot of space to grow cilantro so there we have it this was
our experiment of growing plants in a sand and compost based
potting medium and I would say that was quite a success all the plants did really well the radish the tomato as well as the cilantro so
I’d like to know from you if you have tried growing in this sand based potting medium I would love to know your experiences
and I’ll see you again soon Happy Gardening! [music]

89 thoughts on “See what happens when you grow vegetables in compost & sand

  1. English is not my first language by play sand do you mean the kindergarden kind?
     the yellowish one?
    Thanks.

  2. A very interesting and well documented experiment about growing food crops in a sand/compost mix! You say cilantro we say coriander 🙂

  3. This was a very interesting video.  I am growing my spice pumpkins in straight compost.  I rarely have to water and going into the 2nd month, I have not had to fertilize them.  What purpose does the sand provide?

  4. We planted a single cilantro plant in our raised bed and it went to seed after 2 wks! I pinched off the tops that looked different from the other leaves and it keeps growing slowly but still tends to bolt.

  5. I too use sand but for the purpose of good drainage as well as a filler. It can get pretty expensive to fill raised beds and containers. As long as i have a good amount of nutrient rich material the plants flourish 🙂 well done my friend, thanks for sharing!

  6. As to the cilantro/coriander confusion, the US and UK refer to the leaves and the seeds differently. In the UK the leaves are coriander and the seeds are coriander seeds. In the US the leaves are cilantro and the seeds are coriander.

  7. I just recently discovered your channel and love it! Thank you for so many informative videos. We end up with a lot of sand in our compost because the chicken coop has a sand floor. It has helped our raised beds enormously. Here in AZ the hard clay is an issue, we brought in soil a few years back and add compost every year.

  8. You have put sand and compost to good use. Your radishes came out very clean in the mix. It is certainly a good soil mix for root crops. Great video, you put a lot of thought, time, and effort into your videos.

  9. I grow asparagus and strawberries in mostly sand with some potting soil on top. But it's mostly sand and they seem to like it.

  10. Just wanted to drop in a line..
    Your videos are very informative and nicely put together. I have been following you for a while and really enjoy watching a new one every time you upload it. Thanks again and keep up the good work. You make me want to move to California at least till the end of the video.. ;-p

  11. I grew tomatoes & peppers in sand/mulch/rabbit pellets. I couldn't keep it moist & had problems with splitting. I think root crops are better in soil with more drainage were a tomato could thrive in a wetter soil. My new place here is nothing but sand/clay. I'm going to get wood chips & spread over the acres to make some topsoil. Next spring I'll make some raised beds with bought compost & try some row crops in the sand & see if they can survive.

  12. I found my neem trees to grow really well in sand, the roots get through easily and the water drains out quickly!!

  13. our natural soil is sugar sand We are adding a lot of compost to help it retain moisture and nutrients. Great explanation  and vid

  14. Wonderful video. I will be trying this for sure. Loved you grew so many varieties too. Great work!

  15. I just planted potatoes. This potatoes I planted but it would rain so much and all I got was real small ones so I replanted to see what happens and I got 4 medium size potatoes so I decided to plant them in just sand and fertilizers lol I still don't know what will happen but can't wait to see.

  16. This works very well. I tried growing eggplants and bell peppers on plain play sand  and compost from home depot last year. It worked very well as long as you plant the plants very close so the foliage cover the entire area thereby trapping the moisture in the raised bed. It's also very easy to remove dead plants after the season is over.

  17. Mulch would have helped keep the soil moist! Love your videos! I experiment often with my plants. It's the best way to learn!

  18. I Love Your Passion about your gardening 😃 ….What kind of compost would you recommend to use with that mixture ?

  19. I grow my chili plants in a very similar mix. One thing I noticed is that this mix not only dries out quickly, but it also becomes much more hydrophobic than other mixes i use. I let one of my pots almost completely dry out at one point, and my usual method of deep watering didn't penetrate more than half an inch of the soil (my usual method is to water the surface lightly moisten the top layer and overcome the hydrophobic properties, then come back in 15 minutes and water deeply). in order to completely rehydrate the pot, i had to dunk it. this isn't such a problem for chili peppers, but i could imagine it being terrible for other vegetables.

  20. Hello California Gardening, we are trying to get in contact with you regarding sending you a compost thermometer and moisture meter for potential review or to be featured in your videos. If you are interested, please contact us at [email protected] to discuss this further. Thanks!

  21. Did you plant the tomato and cilantro plants with the perlite? You only mentioned perlite when you speaking about the radishes.
    Cheers!
    Louise
    I put my garden to bed today as we are going to have a hard frost on Sunday AM. zone 7

  22. I agree with you – sand and compost works great for Diakon – that's what we call it here in Hawaii. Do you add any fertilizers? Drain holes in your containers? Keep up the good work – great service you're providing.

  23. I am relatively new to gardening. My biggest problem is I cannot get my hands on perlite and/or vermiculite. Everything else I can get. Will I be at a disadvantage? How do I overcome this situation?

  24. hi i'm new to gardening.. just wanna ask what it would be like to grow in pure compost? would that be better?

  25. Nice informative video,explained nicely for new gardeners like me. liked your idea of using foil trays to grow Cilantro.

  26. I just pulled a bunch of compost out of the backyard heap. I'm trying to figure out what soil composition to use. I'm considering just planting into straight compost. Is that safe for the plants, or will it be too acidic or have too much nitrogen?

  27. I've grown cilantro & fenugreek seeds. The seeds get germinated but after they grown upto 2 inches, they started to burn, finally small plants died. I've tried 2, 3 times, every time same thing happened. I have tried putting them in shade, semi-shade but every time same problem occurs.
    Can you please guide me, what is happening with the plants.

  28. I feel frustrated about which sand I should use in my garden.. I see you used play sand but I keep hearing negative reviews about it. What brand of play sand did you use? Can I get it from a big box store?

  29. Thanks! I wanted to add sand to the soil Cus I plant directly in the ground but soil was mixed with cow horse manures n it was still very hard dried tightly packed even if if things grew. I felt it didn't grow as fast or as well. But I'm gonna try in ground to see if it would loosen the soil. (1st year at gardening)

  30. As I live in Hawaii, I found that beach sand was useful in my Wicking Barrel… Need to rinse several times in a bucket. About half a foot deep, each time.
    -Meanwhile, your video was interesting. My soils are about half sand, near the ovean. Mahalo!😁

  31. You always use expensive soils. This is an exception. Cheap does not mean it will not work when it comes to soils. Sand adds weight. Perlite is lighter.

  32. Hey man , you have some of the best pot plants growing videos , do you think using sand like you have done it here , would decrease fungus gnats population ? I'm struggling with those root eating bastards.

  33. Misleading title of the video. I really thought it was just sand and compost. And now you say perlite?

  34. Sand is widely used here in the UAE. In fact some of the potted plants that I bought from the nurseries such as mint, curry leaves, moringa were planted in sand. I have also seen tomatoes, okra and other plants successfully planted on the ground (sandy desert ground). You just need to irrigate the sand well.

  35. hey man, is sand necessary for drainage or can i just pot everything into straight compost? everyone is trying to tell me i need like half sand but something in me doesnt want to accept it haha

  36. Sand with fertilizer is much better than mud cause mud tends to harden the soil and water won’t penetrate down which make the pot dry inside

  37. I'm in south Florida. All we have here is sand and we're about 12 miles inland from the gulf. I grew some nice peppers and tomatoes in sand and fertilizer. The tomatoes got too much rain so only got about half the harvest. They were delicious though. The rest were rotten. The peppers were great! Way more than we could eat. This year I'm trying radishes and some other kind of veggies. Nice video on how to plant in sand and compost.

  38. Gd idea.I tried.no more fuss of aphids.I pour liquid all purpose fertilizer frequently

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