Handling the packages
Peat products should be handled carefully because the plastic packages and pallets are sensitive to breaking. Loading and unloading are stages during which a big part of the damage can be caused.
High pallets need special attention because the tops can hit the roof of the container causing the pallets to tip over. Be aware that high pallets of compressed bales can become unstable during shipment. The pallets may fall and/or bales can fall down when opening container doors.
Compressed XL bales are heavy (50-55Kg / bale) and must be handled by 2 persons.
Storing the products
Kekkilä substrates are peat-based products. Peat is natural, organic material and contains naturally occurring microorganisms. These natural microorganisms will continue to be active in the substrate after production, which is perfectly normal. Some natural microorganisms are antagonistic against fungal diseases and may help to produce healthy and strong plants.
Peat products should be taken into use during the three months after the customer has received the products. The best place for storing peat products is a cool, dry and dark storage area. Peat products are sensitive to direct sunlight. High temperature accelerates the action of microbes and induces the loss of nitrogen. High humidity can cause problems with moulds. Peat products should be isolated from any form of potential contamination by plant diseases.
To ensure that the quality of the substrate is maintained during storage it is recommended to:
- Store under cover and off the ground
- Store in a cool and dry place
- Store away from any potential contamination
- Protect from direct sunlight
Taking the growing media into use
Before using the product, we recommend to always conduct an arrival check ensuring that:
- The product received (product code and name printed at the side of the bale) matches with the delivery note / ordered product
- EC (Electrical Conductivity) and pH are in line with the declaration at the point of use
- The product is as expected for the specific growing requirements
- The product physically appears as expected and has a natural and normal smell
Loosening the bales
Substrates in compressed bales (XL or Maxi-bale) require some loosening and preparation before taking the product into use.
The bales should be loosened carefully before use. When loosening the bale, water should be added 15–25 litres per XL Bale, 350–500 litres per Maxi Bale. This secures the optimal volume, filling and structure of peat substrates. Loosening of compressed peat substrates can be done manually or mechanically
Handle peat products with care, and avoid long periods of mixing or milling. This is particularly important for products that contain coarser fractions of peat where excessive loosening and mixing will break up the peat fractions into finer particles.
NB! Over mixing of the product will cause the peat to lose its structure. The addition of water aids the formation of peat granules and is necessary for obtaining the optimal out-turn volume of peat.
Nutrient levels in substrates may decrease during storage time. In order to avoid the problems with the low nutrient content of peat we always recommend to add a water-soluble NPK fertilizer before use, or at the latest at the beginning of growing.
Kekkilä Professional products are produced in places with very low temperatures during winter time (from November to April approximately). Packed substrates coming out of the factory may freeze soon after production (before loading for shipment). They might be frozen when they arrive at your premises. The freezing and thawing processes will not affect the quality at all. You should check that the product is thoroughly thawed before taking it into use.