University of Maryland Extension

Learn more about growing media

Neith Little

Urban farmers often grow their crops in raised beds or containers filled with a mix of materials including peat, coir, vermiculite, compost, course sand, woodchips, and soil. 

This is an innovative practice that blurs the lines between how farmers have traditionally grown in the native soil and how nursery growers have raised plants in soil-less potting mixes.

Applied Extension research is ongoing to develop recommendations specific to urban growing media. In the mean-time, urban growers who raise their crops in material other than soil may find the following references helpful.

Important Note: In Maryland, if you are a grower who sells at least $2,500 worth of produce, you need to base your nutrient applications on an approved nutrient management plan. 

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