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Article

The Use of Wood Fiber for Reducing Risks of Hydrophobicity in Peat-Based Substrates

1
EPHor, L’Institut Agro, 49045 Angers, France
2
Department of Horticultural Sciences, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Anna Tedeschi
Agronomy 2021, 11(5), 907; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11050907
Received: 1 April 2021 / Revised: 29 April 2021 / Accepted: 30 April 2021 / Published: 5 May 2021
Peat substrates are well known to become hydrophobic during desiccation, thus degrading their water retention properties. Synthetic wetting agents are commonly incorporated to limit the risk of hydrophobicity, but substrates companies are searching for more sustainable alternatives. To that end, the effect of wood fiber addition in peat-based mixes was measured using contact angles and hydration curves. The study was carried out on two raw materials (white milled peat and wood fiber) and binary mixes. The results showed a shift from hydrophilic to more hydrophobic character with a decrease in the ability to rewet of peat-based substrates in relation to the intensity of drying, whereas wood fiber remained hydrophilic. Increasing wood fiber content in peat-based mixes improved the rehydration efficiency, but with a lower intensity of that measured with synthetic wetting agent addition. Our results highlighted the hydrophilic nature of wood fiber and demonstrated an additional benefit of wood fiber use in peat-based growing media. View Full-Text
Keywords: peat; wood fiber; rewetting; wettability; water retention; physical properties peat; wood fiber; rewetting; wettability; water retention; physical properties
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MDPI and ACS Style

Durand, S.; Jackson, B.E.; Fonteno, W.C.; Michel, J.-C. The Use of Wood Fiber for Reducing Risks of Hydrophobicity in Peat-Based Substrates. Agronomy 2021, 11, 907. https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11050907

AMA Style

Durand S, Jackson BE, Fonteno WC, Michel J-C. The Use of Wood Fiber for Reducing Risks of Hydrophobicity in Peat-Based Substrates. Agronomy. 2021; 11(5):907. https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11050907

Chicago/Turabian Style

Durand, Stan, Brian E. Jackson, William C. Fonteno, and Jean-Charles Michel. 2021. "The Use of Wood Fiber for Reducing Risks of Hydrophobicity in Peat-Based Substrates" Agronomy 11, no. 5: 907. https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11050907

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