Unused stockpiles of decomposing nutmeg shells have been given a new lease on life by the Grenada Cooperative Association (GCNA). Collected shells have been ground up, mixed with peat moss and packaged as a potting media for use by farmers, nursery operators and home gardeners. The GCNA has branded it as Nutmoss Potting Mix.
CARDI Grenada tested several concentrations of the mixes ranging from the pure 100% media, to those combined with peat moss at ratios of 75%, 50% and 25% respectively, as a potting media. In collaboration with the GCNA, the results were demonstrated on the use and effectiveness of the mix to agriculture retail stores, nursery operators and farmers, on 23 July, 2020 at the CARDI Field Station, Westerhall, St David.
Across the board the results were excellent! Not only were the seedlings healthy but, the root balls were also well developed and vigorous. According to Reginald Andall, CARDI Representative in Grenada and Agronomist “this potting mix is very easy and it fits very well in one’s vegetable seedling production. It has tremendous potential for the agriculture sector, not just in Grenada but around the Caribbean, as it can be easily exported.”
Agronomist Ronald O’Neale, explained that for every thousand pounds of nutmegs that is processed by the GCNA, 300 pounds of nutmeg shells are generated. The positive results of these mixes as an alternative potting media in nursery production presents an agripreneurial opportunity and the creation of a potential spin off industry. The GCNA hopes this mix can be commercialized in the near future, so reducing the dependence on imported potting media.