FAQs

How do I order?
Please provide your contact info on the contact page or email us at info@watergripmedia.com and we will contact you. Depending on your needs we can determine whether it is appropriate for us to ship to you directly or for you to work with one of the WaterGrip authorized distributors.

Can holding this much water be a bad thing?
No! WaterGrip uniquely holds this water within a macro/micro pore structure which holds air and nutrients as well as water. WaterGrip always provides a good balance between air/oxygen and water. Roots need both air and water: air for respiration of the roots (like we breathe) and water for translocation of nutrients and cooling of plants (transpiration). Even when WaterGrip is fully saturated, this air is available for root respiration to occur. Roots quickly and deeply penetrate WaterGrip Growing Media because the media provides everything the roots need to thrive. Plant leaves and growth are healthier due to this constant gas exchange. When WaterGrip is fully saturated, additional water just runs through the media after being filtered by the media. Further, a distinction can be made between “holding” and “retaining” water. “Holding” means that the water is 100% available to the roots and plant; WaterGrip holds on to water. Some materials retain a lot of water but do not allow it to be readily available for the roots and plants and do not allow access to air. When roots cannot breathe/respire they become stressed and essentially drown – at this point they can no longer get nutrients or water for the rest of the plant. Plants go as roots go, bad roots, bad plants or as in the case of WaterGrip media – great roots, great plants.

What is Water Holding Capacity (WHC)?
Water Holding Capacity is the ability of a substrate to hold water against gravity. It is usually simply measured by weighing the substrate saturated vs. totally dry. The percentage is the WHC. A lot of variables go into this, such as particle size, can the soil/media absorb water, repel water, micro or macro pore space. WaterGrip Growing Media is a hydrophilic (water loving) media with exceptional Water Holding Capacity. Fully saturated WaterGrip Brownie weighs 11.8 lbs/sq.ft. vs. 1.3 lbs/sq.ft. fully dry. This means it can hold a maximum of 10.5 lbs. of water/sq.ft. . The bottom line is simply that WaterGrip can make more water available than any other substrate on the market in a stabilized manner. Polymer gels currently on the market expand and contract making them unsuitable for many growing applications. What’s more is that WaterGrip doesn’t just hold water, but also air, nutrients, hormones, bacteria for optimal growth and development.

Is WaterGrip organic?
WaterGrip is 94% organic on a dry weight basis. WaterGrip Growing Media is comprised of traditional organic mix material – coconut coir – combined with proprietary properties to create a hydrophilic matrix with superior water, air and nutrient holding properties.

Does use of WaterGrip allow for reduced pesticide use?
A healthy plant is the best defense against disease. WaterGrip Growing Media provides ready root access to water, air and nutrients which promotes healthy plants so reduced pesticide use may be possible.

What amount of water reduction should I expect?
This is highly dependent upon your growing application, what you are growing and environmental conditions. To date, testimonials have reported water savings of up to 40-75%. Independent third party testing is underway for a variety of applications. We are always anxious to hear the results our customers experience in their environments. For extensive rooftop applications, no external irrigation is required and water conservation comes from reducing and delaying and filtering storm water run-off. For many applications, water savings start because the media better absorbs, captures, and distributes water inputs versus typical media, and are multiplied when over saturation of media can be eliminated. While roots are protected from over watering because WaterGrip ensures ready access to air even when saturated, water will run freely through the media once it is saturated.

Why does WaterGrip Media have a high CEC (cation exchange capacity) and why does that matter?
Simply stated, WaterGrip ingredients have the right charge to hold nutrient molecules, plus the ability to hold nutrients in solution in the mix. Also, proprietary properties hold the nutrients so they do not leech out as easily. They hold on to nutrients, make them available, and therefore more efficient.

How does WaterGrip Media compare to soil?
Soils are mostly weathered rocks, microbes, insects and organic matter. In reality, we designed WaterGrip Media to act like a soil, without the issues of compaction, and weight, and with superior holding capacity.

For many growing applications, such as on a green roof or within a living green wall, when soil is used, plants perform poorly due in part to compaction. One cannot plow the soil on the roof or in a wall to open it up after compaction. Water droplets compact most soils. Root will rot without access to proper water and air exchange and plants stress out or die. Other soils with high organic content tend to compact due to a combination of water droplets and decomposition. With decomposition, particle size decreases and the soil decreases in volume. Roots do not get the access to water, air and nutrients that they need. WaterGrip Growing Media is a stabilized media which does not compact or “pack”. It maintains its ability to hold water, air and nutrients for the long term for long term root and plant health.

As for weight and water holding capacity, soils can be light (sandy soils that don’t hold much water) or heavy (clay soils that hold more water). WaterGrip Media is lightweight, holds much more available water for plants, and can take water into the media much faster than soil. When fully saturated, WaterGrip Growing Media Brownie weighs only 11.8 lbs/sq.ft. making it the ideal green roof and living green wall media. Hence, less storm water runoff. Compacted soils tend to hold water on the surface and simply find the low spot or edge of the bed, or head quickly into the storm drain. Compact soils never allow water to penetrate the soil surface to “fill” up the soil.

How is the Ground-Up product to be used?
WaterGrip Growing Media Ground-Up product is perfect for amending poor mixes whether for roofs, landscapes, plantscapes, commercial potting media, or soil remediation. The incorporation of WaterGrip Ground-Up enables the use of less water and fertilizer and increases the porosity of the soil mix. Roots and plants will be healthier, more robust and grow faster with less water, less fertilizer, less labor and less energy.

What are some examples of how WaterGrip Media contributes to energy savings?
As a green roof media, WaterGrip is lighter in weight and less energy is necessary to get it on the roof; WaterGrip’s exceptional water holding capacity translates into more water held that can help to cool the rooftop during hot weather. WaterGrip air holding capacity means that air held helps to provide roof insulation. For most growing applications, reduced water usage means lower energy costs to get needed water to the growing source. Because WaterGrip media provides a foundation for robust and rapid growth, plants can be ready for market more quickly in commercial growing systems meaning a faster turnover (possibly several more turns) or plants can be started later in the season in the greenhouse, enabling heat savings.

Do weeds love WaterGrip Growing Media?
WaterGrip Media contains no weed seeds so weed growth is minimized. Additionally, we see dramatically reduced weed growth vs. typical media. This is due in part to rapid plant growth which speeds coverage and gives weeds less place to root.

Does WaterGrip freeze with freezing temperatures?
Yes, just like water freezes with freezing temperatures. Air held within the media does help to insulate roots and protect them during freeze/thaw cycles. Freeze thaw cycles do not affect the stability of WaterGrip media.

Is it true that plant cuttings can root just by placing them on the surface of WaterGrip media?
Yes. Cuttings that are scattered on the surface root even when they haven’t been pushed in to the surface. Roots quickly penetrate the media to stabilize plantings. What’s more is that roots deeply penetrate the media but are self pruning. Roots do not travel outside the media.

Why is WaterGrip Water Holding Capacity so important for Living Green Walls?
Living green walls create “water columns.” The weight of the water and downward pull of gravity creates walls that are dry at the top and soaked at the bottom, not good for growing a healthy living and uniform wall. WaterGrip is a better wall media because its micropore space and the hydrophilic nature of the media matrix helps fight against this “downward pull”. For best performance we do not recommend full saturation of the media – this is just too much fighting against gravity. WaterGrip works extremely well with drip media that allows its excellent capillary action to distribute the water throughout the media and then allows the water holding capacity to hold on to it.