EarthMix® Garden Products: Success Begins at the Ground Level
This article appeared in Edible Nashville, The 2021 Green Issue. See it here.
Ever wonder where the garden soil that you purchase comes from? Do you check the ingredient list on potting mixes when repotting your houseplants? There are few things more exciting than watching a plant thrive, and few things more frustrating than watching one languish. While it is easy to observe plant health above ground—watching leaves unfurl, seeing flowers bloom—it is what happens below ground that determines plant vitality.
David Bates, founder of EarthMix® Garden Products, relies on the wisdom of past generations and new developments in soil biology to craft garden soils, amendments, and composts right here in Nashville, TN under the EarthMix® Garden Products brand. David explains, “I grew up working with my grandmother, starting from an early age. She was all about using what nature gives us. She started the ‘hothouse’ business in the days before chemical fertilizers were widely used. She sought out the best soil, aged manures and other composted organic matter to use for her plants. Years later, as a third-generation horticulturalist, I have taken a step back from the artificial and dead soils widely produced today and returned to what my grandmother proved to be best. Real plants need real living soils, composts, and amendments. That is the foundation EarthMix® is built on.”
EarthMix® Garden Products was founded in Nashville in 1998, with the guiding principle that success begins from the ground up. EarthMix® has humble origins as a potting blend made in-house at Bates Nursery. What began as an endeavor to improve plant health at the nursery has transformed into a passion for perfecting soil mixes and composts that rely on the latest developments in soil science for proven results. David says, “I’ve spent the last twenty years developing and searching out the finest inputs to produce soils and amendments that are not only sustainably produced and organic; they are robust living substrates.” Mycorrhizae fungi are added to all soil mixes and to the proprietary Supernatural™ compost blend. These fungi create networks underground that act as extensions to plant roots, fostering efficient nutrient uptake for more vigorous growth. The biological diversity, organic matter, and nutrient density found in each shovelful of EarthMix® composts and growing mediums not only feed plants for the season, but they also contribute to a lasting soil legacy.
EarthMix® is committed to be more than organic-their sustainable growing media and amendments are crafted with the future in mind. You’ll never see peat moss as an ingredient in EarthMix® products. Coconut coir, the byproduct of the coconut processing industry, is used instead. Coconut coir not only has anti-fungal properties (say goodbye to fungus gnats!), it also is a renewable resource, unlike peat. David explains, “When peat is not used, valuable carbon reserves are no longer depleted.” Ingredients found in EarthMix® Garden Products are also sourced locally from organic producers in Tennessee whenever possible.
When you purchase garden soil, compost, amendments. or potting mixes, take a moment to look at the ingredient list. Do a quick search to determine how and where the product is made. The health of your plants begins from the ground up, and it is crucial to use the best products for productive gardens. The EarthMix® philosophy is rooted in sustainability, and EarthMix® soils contribute to a lasting soil legacy for consistently healthy plants and gardens. EarthMix® Garden Products can be found at independent garden centers throughout the Southeast and can be purchased in bulk at Bates Nursery.