What is Coco Peat and Coco Coir?
Coco peat and coco coir are both made from the same material, which is the fibrous outer husk of a coconut. Coco peat (or pith) is used to mention the product with fine, powdery texture, while coco coir (or coco fiber) is used to name the product with a coarser and more fiber-like structure. But as the coconut agriculture products are getting more well-known, the name “coco coir” is used to refer to products made from coconut husks in general.
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The Main Differences Between Coco Peat and Coco Coir
Coco Peat and Coco Coir are derived from the leftover coconut husks after nut harvesting. Coco Coir possesses a higher fiber content than Coco Peat, resulting in improved water retention capabilities. On the other hand, Coco Peat is more nutrient-rich. For optimal outcomes, combine peat or coco coir with potting soils.
1. Raw Material:
At core, both of these products are made from the same material: the fibrous outer husk of the coconut, but it is the process that separate them apart:
- Coco coir is made by grinding up and processing the coarse fibers
- Coco peat is made by grinding up and processing the fine dust or powder left over after the fibers have been removed.
2. Water Drainage and Retention
Coco peat has better water retention properties compared to coco coir, as it can hold up to eight times its weight in water. So a mix of coco peat and soil can hold alot of water, and there are plants that thrive well in an environment like that.
Coco coir on the other hand is fibrous, and the mix of soil and coir can be spacious in its structure, providing excellent aeration and increasing water drainage.
A coco mix of peat and coir can have both features, with the intensity depending on the ratio mixed between them.
3. Nutritional Value
Coco coir is relatively low in nutrients, but it does have some natural rooting hormones that can help with plant development.
Coco peat contains more nutrients such as nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus than coco coir.
Both of them share no overlapping features, and do not cancel themselves out, so most products on the markets are a mix of a certain ratio of them.
4. Color and Texture
Coco coir has a coarser, fibrous texture and a brown color.
Coco peat has a finer, more powdery texture and a darker brown color.
5. Difference in pH Level
Coco coir has a more neutral pH level of 6 to 6.8.
Coco peat tends to be slightly more acidic, with a pH level of 5.5 to 6.5.
The pH level has some slight differences depending on how they were processed and treated. When you are working with sensitive plants, measure the pH yourself to prevent over providing of nutrients.
Similarities Between Coco Peat and Coco Coir
These are some of the shared feature of the two coco product, they both are:
- Made from the fibrous outer husk of a coconut.
- Renewable and environmentally friendly alternatives to traditional peat moss.
- Known for their ability to improve soil structure and promote root growth.
- Hold water well, preventing water from pooling at the roots of plants and allowing for good water drainage.
- Used as a growing medium for plants and can be used in a variety of applications such as soil enhancement, hydroponics, and container gardening.
- Relatively lightweight, which makes them easy to handle and transport.
- Have a neutral to slightly acidic pH level, which is beneficial for many types of plants.
- Resistant to fungal decay and can be used repeatedly without losing their effectiveness (if properly retreated)
- Have similar applications in horticulture, agriculture, and floriculture industries.
- Versatile and can be mixed with other soil supplements, nutrients, and fertilizers to create customized soil blends for specific plant needs.
Choosing and Purchasing Coco Peat and Coco Coir
Here are some recommendations of Coco Coir Global’s products if your haven’t figure out what to choose:
Loose Coco Coir Bag
This product is quite familiar to growers, especially home gardeners. With its easy-to-use and versatile features, users are flexible in using them for various purposes.
Pre-filled Coco Coir Bag
Also known as a plant bag as the bag itself is already a container, plants can be grown directly in this bag. They are designed for growing plants both in and outdoors.
Coco Coir Grow Bag
Also known as coco coir slab, comes in the form of long compressed coco coir slab of brick, hence the name, usually widely used in greenhouses and recommended to use alongside grow bags.
Compressed Coco Coir Open Top Bag
The same finished Compressed Coco Coir product with Grow Bag product (OMRI Listed certified), only different in cube form. Cubes are customizable.
Raw materials are 100% natural from coconut husks. Easy to manage by just being an open-and-use product. Widely used for several plants such as blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, cannabis, and gingers.
- Lightweight, easy to carry and use
- Easy to transport with large quantities
Using Coco Peat and Coco Coir for Potting Mixes
You can mix coco coir with soil to increase productivity to the crops.
The mix will consist of coco peat/coco coir, potting soil, compost, vermiculite/perlite. Mix them 1:1 to each other for the easiest combination, store them in a sealed container until use.
Or, if you want to optimize the mix, as the compost holds excess nutrients, mix them in the ratio of 3:2:3 or 4:3:3 of soil:compost:coco peat respectively to prevent leaching of nutrients.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Coco Peat and Coco Coir
Is Coco Coir better than coco peat?
Coco peat offers superior aeration, moisture retention, and nutrient availability; however, it can compact over time. On the other hand, coco coir is an ideal choice for hydroponic gardens or container gardening due to its great drainage characteristics.
How long does Coco coir last?/ What is the lifespan of coco coir?
Once it is filled in bags, coconut coir can last up to three to four years, and they can take decades to decompose. So it is advised that you should reuse coco coir instead of dumping them, as they take a lot of space for a long time.
How many times can you reuse coco coir?
About 2-3 times before you have to re-treat and re-mix the medium again.