It's a good idea to wet your potting soil first, wet enough that it can be
formed into a soft ball when squeezed. It should be moist but not soaking
wet. If you do this first, you should find that the water will then drain
through. If not, you need to lighten your soil by using perlite. Make sure
that you have a drainage area in the bottom of the pot.
Hope this helps.
Put the whole pot in tepid (baby-bath-temperature) water, up to the rim,
overnight. Allow to drain. Keep the soil moist or you'll probably have to
do it again.
An alternative can be to add a small amount of surfactant to the water and
top water. In the past, I've found one drop of shampoo per quart of water
Next time you use this potting soil, throw some hot water in the bag a couple
days before hand, close the bag, and knead it a bit... then leave for 48 hours
or so before planting. It'll probably wet easier.
Hot water? I just got a bunch of Scottsmans mixes from Home Depot. I really
like the texture, but both types had so much peat I had to soak the pots to
get them moist. Almost killed one of my trees before I noticed the whole
half-gallon of water I poured on it ran right over the top and down out one
hole and left the soil dry.
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