March 7, 2024

Soilless Mixes Workshop: Current Status of the Growing Media Industry

DeKalb County Farm Bureau




As the green industry continues to adopt more sustainable cultivation methods, soilless mixes could play an important role. Growing ornamental plants using these products is a complex subject. Production technology affects not only the plant growth and yield, but also overall plant quality, which improves the cumulative benefits of plants.

Soilless culture systems, as part of sustainable methods for the future of nursery production, are rapidly expanding, especially where water conservation is a concern. Staying current on growing media, plant physiology, water & nutrition management are important to making well-founded choices.  By attending this workshop, you will learn the basics of soilless culture and how to execute, report and evaluate the factors involved.


8:30am – Registration / Check-In
9:00am – Welcome, Introductions
9:05am – Current Status of Growing Media Industry
10:15am – Sustainability of Growing Media
11:00am – Break
11:15am – The Science Behind Soilless Substrates
12:15pm – Lunch
1:00pm – Soilless Substrates: Design, Build, Maintain
2:00pm – Break
2:15pm – Crop Management in Peat-reduced or peat-free substrates
3:00pm – Classroom portion concludes; travel time to Midwest Trading
3:30pm – Mix Plant Tour at Midwest Trading
4:30pm – Event concludes


  • Brian Jackson, Professor of Horticultural Science, North Carolina State University
  • Kevin Donnelly, Horticultural Soil Scientist, Midwest Trading Horticultural Supplies & Products

Who Should Attend:

Designed for professionals working in horticultural companies, consultants and technical suppliers with an interest in process and plant related topics. This could include the Nursery and Greenhouse Production Manager, the Nursery Plant Health Manager, owners and managers involved in making decisions and managing cultivation systems, Garden Center operators/owners, and seasonal color crew managers. The fundamentals of soilless culture span all areas of crop production.

Organizer: Kellie Schmidt

Click here to contact [email protected] for further information about this event.