How long storage affects performance

Uneven growth due to long storage

Are you seeing uneven germination and growth in your young plants? There’s a chance that this has to do with inconsistent fertiliser levels within the substrate mixture.

These pictures clearly show uneven growth:

Uneven germination and growth

Uneven germination and growth

Long storage of substrate 

The quality of Kekkilä Professional products is thoroughly monitored and checked before they are shipped to our distributors. However, when a bag of substrate is stored for a long time before taking it into use, it will require some additional love and attention before filling your trays. During long storage and especially when exposed to heat the starter fertiliser that is blended into the substrate mix will start to be consumed by the beneficial microbial life in the substrate. Thus, the amount of fertiliser within the mix will gradually decline. In the end, this results in inadequate and unevenly distributed fertiliser for your crops. 

 So, you might wonder what qualifies as a longer storage time. If the substrate is stored in a sheltered and cool environment, this applies to any bag stored for over a period of 6 months.  

 If the substrate has been exposed to extreme heat or sun, this period is shortened to 4 months.  

How to check the age of your substrate 

Every bag of Kekkilä Professional substrate has a LOT number printed onto it. This number can be used to check the production date of the package. If you know the production date, you can determine for how long the substrate has been in storage.  

Getting back to that premium product  

Whenever you take substrate into use that has either been stored for over 6 months or has been exposed to extreme sun or heat, make sure to follow these simple steps: 

  • Loosen and fluff the substrate 
  • Add some water and fertiliser (NPK) 
  • Mix it well 

 After doing this, you will be able to use our premium products to their maximum capacity again.  

Good even germination lettuce

Check out this related article if you’re looking for generic instructions on how to prepare your substrate before use, regardless of the storage time.

Contact your distributor