Sources for lava rock in Florida

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Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  PeacefulAres on Sat Jan 26, 2013 6:32 am

I want to try this out as a medium for growing plants. I bought one of those 40 lb bags of larger sized lava rock chunks, with the intention of crushing them up with a hammer. However, it is incredibly draining and boring. I wanted to try find some lava rock in smaller particles sizes for sale on the internet, but I can't find anything that isn't very expensive. Anybody have any sources?


Last edited by PeacefulAres on Wed Jan 30, 2013 7:20 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  leatherback on Sat Jan 26, 2013 9:17 am

Hm.. you might have to go to one of the cold states..

In Germany they sell lava granulate for reducing the slippery-ness (Please .. What's the word!) of ice and snow covered roads. I got bags of 50 (or was it 40? ) Kg's (About 80-100 pound) bags for 5 euro's (about 7 USD) each. That stuff is ground to a max granule size of 1/2 cm, about 1/5 of an inch, with most kernels much finer. Basically, all of the bag can be used, especially if you have larger pots where you can use a rooting layer of fines, and a top/botto dressing of coarser material


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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  John Lee on Sat Jan 26, 2013 3:38 pm

Try Colorado Lava, my club orders from them.

Hope it Helps,

John

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  DreadyKGB on Sat Jan 26, 2013 4:12 pm

There was also a seller on ebay who sold various sizes down to about 1/4 in maybe and also some large lace rock pieces for reptile cages and aquariums. I bought some a while back, I'll see if I can still find it.



Todd
Here Ok price for a smaller amount to try out.


Last edited by DreadyKGB on Sat Jan 26, 2013 4:40 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : added link)

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  -keith- on Sat Jan 26, 2013 9:12 pm

landscaping lava rock is cheap . then you will need a sledge hammer and some sifters...smash sift repeat Smile

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  Just Mike on Sat Jan 26, 2013 10:21 pm

try searching for "scoria" instead of lava rock...are there any rock yards or bulk landscap supply places around you?

you could also contact a nearby bonsai club and see what they are using and where they are getting it.

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  PeacefulAres on Sat Jan 26, 2013 11:58 pm

Just Mike wrote:try searching for "scoria" instead of lava rock...are there any rock yards or bulk landscap supply places around you?

you could also contact a nearby bonsai club and see what they are using and where they are getting it.

Thanks for the tips everybody.

There is a rock yard in my area, but after checking there website it seems they only sell lava rock in sizes large than an inch. Perhaps I'll give them a call and see if they do anything special.

I'm consider contacting a local bonsai club, even though I've been pretty content just going solo.

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  I Cut too much on Sun Jan 27, 2013 12:08 am

Oh, this is funny. I live in central Oregon. There are lava buttes literally surrounding me. I have enormous mountains of finely crushed lava rock within two miles of my house either direction. Question is, how much do you want?

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  PeacefulAres on Sun Jan 27, 2013 5:57 am

I Cut too much wrote:Oh, this is funny. I live in central Oregon. There are lava buttes literally surrounding me. I have enormous mountains of finely crushed lava rock within two miles of my house either direction. Question is, how much do you want?

You know any dealers?

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  SamC on Sun Jan 27, 2013 11:27 am

I live in S. Oregon, and I go out to a couple quarry sites and screen for my desired sizes there. I go to one site for red cinder, and another for the apparently less common black. In the past few years I have shipped small batches to a couple different fellows on the east coast. The big hang up is shipping costs usually far exceed the 'value' of the volcanic cinder (small volcanic vents eject mounds to mountains of relatively small particles of very porous lava which regionally is called volcanic cinder). Lava "rock" can be pretty solid and not terribly porous, the cinder or scoria is very porous.

I have tried to work out various shipping deals for clubs back east including finding cargo trucks with a bit of unused space and the prices are just insane. The best I have managed is the flat rate USPS boxes.

You can check ebay. I have found for myself that by the time I buy gas to drive to the sites, spend hours sifting the rock for desired size, packaging, etc. that there are very few people willing to pay enough so that I am not actually losing money. Rather moot right now as the region is under a few inches of snow as 'I cut too much' can confirm!


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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  Just Mike on Sun Jan 27, 2013 2:56 pm

does it have to be scoria, or can it be a different substrate...the trick with substrates isnt really that one is so far superior to another as much as local availability...if all else fails you can pm me your city (or links to the bulk landscape yards in your area) and i can see if there is a something you can substitute...

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  Marty Weiser on Sun Jan 27, 2013 4:37 pm

Wee Tree lists both pumice and red lava/scoria at http://www.weetree.com/index.php?pg=2&l=product_list&c=7. They are located in Oregon and it is most likely the commercial versions of what was listed above. I have used their pumice, but have local sources of the red lava/scoria. As stated above, shipping will be expensive.

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  PeacefulAres on Mon Jan 28, 2013 2:49 am

Alright, I got a method of smashing this lava rock down pretty easy. Managed to fill a decent size pots worth in maybe an hour of crushing lanscaping size pieces with a hammer. The good news is, despite being a bit boring, I very very few fines from this, so there is little waste.

I think I'll buy some from ebay, while I try to track down some other sources.

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  PeacefulAres on Wed Jan 30, 2013 7:22 am

I'm absolutely striking out in terms of finding anybody who sells lava rock in smaller the 1 inch pieces. I'm going to start calling hydroponics shops, or smaller nurseries in my area to see if they carry any pumice or similar products.

If anybody had some suggestions of where to find the smaller lava rock in SW Florida, it would be cool.

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  PeacefulAres on Wed Jan 30, 2013 8:28 pm

Well, called a few more places with no success, and I'm kind of bummed. The dude at the hydroponics shop in particular, was actually kind of rude to me. He said I should plant in a mixture of Pearlite and sphagnum moss. When I told him that I had my own mix in mind and that I was looking for lava rock or pumice, he just told me to go to home depot and rushed me off the phone. So far, not so good.

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  leatherback on Wed Jan 30, 2013 8:49 pm

How about contacting these guys and see whether they have a smal volume dealer or wholesale buyer near to you: http://reddome.com/

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  Just Mike on Thu Jan 31, 2013 12:11 am

where in SW florida?? im on the west coast, so i dont know what SW florida means other than a fairly large area of land located in the south western part of the state of florida...i need some city names to be able to aid in searching that area at all...


also...does is HAVE to be red lava? or are you just looking for a substrate?

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  PeacefulAres on Thu Jan 31, 2013 3:10 am

Just Mike wrote:where in SW florida?? im on the west coast, so i dont know what SW florida means other than a fairly large area of land located in the south western part of the state of florida...i need some city names to be able to aid in searching that area at all...


also...does is HAVE to be red lava? or are you just looking for a substrate?

I don't have any issues finding substrate at the moment. I'm using Napa floor dry or turface, and pine bark bits for my trees. I was just looking to get enough lava rock to try using it as a pure substrate, and mixing it with other stuff. I'm not the most experienced at tracking these things down. I don't really care what color it is though.

I'm in Charlotte Country Florida, if that helps.

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  Just Mike on Thu Jan 31, 2013 8:57 pm

if all else fails...this place is in florida and the shipping is free...still kinda pricey if you ask me, but then again, lava isnt nearly as hard to find where i am at...ill keep checking, but ive been busy today and im 3 hour time diff from you, so probably tmrw i will be able to make some calls and see if i can find anything cheaper...

http://www.floridabonsaisupplies.com/Red_Lava_Rock_For_Bonsai.html

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  PeacefulAres on Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:58 pm

Just Mike wrote:if all else fails...this place is in florida and the shipping is free...still kinda pricey if you ask me, but then again, lava isnt nearly as hard to find where i am at...ill keep checking, but ive been busy today and im 3 hour time diff from you, so probably tmrw i will be able to make some calls and see if i can find anything cheaper...

http://www.floridabonsaisupplies.com/Red_Lava_Rock_For_Bonsai.html

Thanks. You don't really have to do that though. If you PM me the companies you're thinking of contacting, I wouldn't mind calling them.

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  Just Mike on Fri Feb 01, 2013 9:33 pm

the closest i was able to find was 1/2"-3/4" size in 1/2 cubic foot bags for $3.60 per bag...it would still have to be crushed...after talking to a few companies in your area, they say its going to be practically impossible to find it in anything smaller...it costs companies a lot to ship it out to florida, so they in turn have to mark up their prices on it to make a profit, and by the time it hots the consumer, most people choose to go with something else altogether, so there isnt really a demand for it...


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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  PeacefulAres on Fri Feb 01, 2013 11:52 pm

Just Mike wrote:the closest i was able to find was 1/2"-3/4" size in 1/2 cubic foot bags for $3.60 per bag...it would still have to be crushed...after talking to a few companies in your area, they say its going to be practically impossible to find it in anything smaller...it costs companies a lot to ship it out to florida, so they in turn have to mark up their prices on it to make a profit, and by the time it hots the consumer, most people choose to go with something else altogether, so there isnt really a demand for it...


Thanks for the help. That is basically the issue I've been running too.

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  monte on Sat Feb 02, 2013 5:35 am

I toss the larger stuff into a cement mixer along with some big rocks, then sift. Works o.k., luckily I have a cement mixer.

mp

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  PeacefulAres on Sat Feb 02, 2013 8:29 am

monte wrote: I toss the larger stuff into a cement mixer along with some big rocks, then sift. Works o.k., luckily I have a cement mixer.

mp

Cool idea. Anybody else have ideas for crushing the landscaping sized pieces up?

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

Post  RKatzin on Sat Feb 02, 2013 12:07 pm

Put it in a gunny sac and drive over it with your truck, back and forth till it's all crushed.

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Re: Sources for lava rock in Florida

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