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.