Cultivate’20 Virtual

Sun Gro and Black Gold will attend the free Cultivate’20 Virtual presented by American Hort. It will be held online from July 13 to July 16, 2020. Visit our virtual 3D exhibit booth, enjoy seeing many speakers, take part in virtual networking events, and lots of educational opportunities. It promises to be a truly exciting online event for the green industry. Don’t miss it!

“For nearly 100 years, Cultivate has been known as THE event for every segment of the green industry. As the source of best practices, new plant varieties, and product innovation, Cultivate’20 Virtual is the place to network with old colleagues and meet new ones.”

Arett Open House 2019

We will be at Booths 124 and 125.

Black Gold and Sun Gro Horticulture have lots of new retail products to show off at the Arett Open House 2019! It will be held from September 8-10, 2019 at the Atlantic City Convention Center in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

Sun Gro will be on the trade show floor with hundreds of other green-industry companies. Check out our new products for 2020, discounts, and shipping options. We hope to see you there!

Sun Gro’s Quality Program


Gardeners experience success with Black Gold® because its parent brand, Sun Gro Horticulture, is dedicated to producing premium products for its customers. To achieve this, Sun Gro created a Quality Program designed to produce and deliver a consistently high-quality, uniform product. As North America’s largest professional mix supplier, Sun Gro uses the same equipment and processes to produce its retail brands, such as Black Gold®.

Sun Gro Quality Program

The first step of the Sun Gro Quality Program is to qualify and monitor the supply of our raw materials (peat moss, compost, aggregates, and additives) to meet quality standards. Factors such as pH, soluble salts (EC), and moisture are checked, but one of the most important tests is a visual test of the product. Richly colored, uniform potting mixes are what we achieve.

ProductionProcessContinual testing of products and equipment are also essential to our program. Documented standardized testing is done at every production site, and products must pass key tests before being sold to our customers. Established testing parameters and frequency requirements ensure the consistency and quality you have come to expect with Black Gold®. Our production equipment is also checked and rechecked continually, so it performs to its maximum potential.

Excellent employees also enable us to create top-tier products. Our well-trained production team consistently monitors the production process, and their work is further supported by advanced technicians and horticultural specialists that inspect the manufacturing process.

Final Testing Processes

Once manufactured, Black Gold® mixes undergo a final testing process. This includes a final characteristic test of raw materials and a yield test. Samples are retained for quality assurance, each pallet is visually inspected, and product bags are provided date codes. If that were not enough, we also run quality trials of our products against other competitor potting soils found at garden centers. Our trial results consistently confirm Black Gold® is the choice brand of potting mix for indoor and outdoor growing.

SunGro NEWEach Sun Gro plant is audited annually by third-party auditors for compliance to quality procedures. Plants are graded and continually improved upon.

Customer Insurance

Sun Gro’s Quality Program is customer insurance. Home gardeners save time, reduce their efforts, and enjoyed increased success when they use Black Gold® products. And our much-appreciated garden center owners will enjoy the reputation of offering a quality product that offers significant value, and happy repeat customers that request Black Gold® by name.

Green Philanthropy From The Ground Up

Black Gold Makes Fertile Donations To Schools and Community Gardens

Black Gold, a Sun Gro Horticulture product-line, built its reputation on trusted all-organic potting soils, fertilizers and soil amendments. “We are dedicated to creating products that help our customers easily grow organic food in every American backyard,” says Blair Busenbark, National Marketing Manager at Sun Gro Horticulture. “The problem is that non-profit organizations also need quality soil products for their organic food gardening programs, so we decided to help them out.” Continue reading “Green Philanthropy From The Ground Up”

Build Organic Garden Soil with Black Gold

Building organic garden soil is the same as working the soil for any other kind of garden except for one thing: you must feed the soil with OMRI Listed products for organic gardening. The ground below your feet is not just dirt but a whole living breathing universe unto itself. Within those soil mineral particles are populations of microscopic bacteria, fungi, yeasts, protozoa and algae. They are collectively known as microbes, which feed on the remnants of dead plants, also known as organic matter. Organic gardens depend on high microbe populations to make plants grow strong naturally, resist pests and diseases, and produce a bumper crop of food or flowers.

Continue reading “Build Organic Garden Soil with Black Gold”

Better Results All Season Long with Black Gold®

Black Gold All Purpose with Multicote Potting SoilWith the advent of Black Gold® All Purpose, you are now able to enjoy the benefits of a premium quality potting soil with a fertilizer that will feed your plants for up to six months. Sun Gro sells this same fertilizer product to professional growers. By incorporating Multicote® into your potting soil, your plants will have a consistent supply of nutrients throughout the entire season.

Multicote®, a controlled release fertilizer, has been coated with a polymer that slowly breaks down to release the nutrients over time. Unlike other controlled release fertilizers in the marketplace, Multicote® will not release excessive nutrients in higher temperatures, thus ensuring your plant will thrive no matter what the weather. This baseline of fertilizer allows your plants to grow all season long, not just when you remember to fertilize. Additional fertilizations with a liquid fertilizer, starting a couple weeks after planting, will ensure your plants get all the nutrients they need, particularly if your plants are heavy feeders.

Ideal for all types of plants, Black Gold® All Purpose with Multicote® is a great choice for house plants, patio containers and hanging baskets. Canadian Sphagnum Peat Moss with earthworm castings, forest humus, compost and pumice combine to provide your plants with both moisture retention and good drainage. Since this potting soil has a higher amount of peat moss, it is ideal for gardeners looking to reduce their fertilizer and water usage.

Think of all the benefits – you start with a premium potting soil; add a controlled release fertilizer that will lessen the frequency of fertilizing; and you get improved plant performance by using Black Gold® All Purpose Potting Soil with Multicote®.

Enrich Your Garden Soil with Black Gold

Black Gold Natural and Organic Fertilizers - SliderWhen you garden, you are gardening with a desired end result in mind, whether it is a bountiful vegetable garden, a bloom-laden bed of roses, a floriferous flowering bed of spring or summer bulbs or a thick rich lawn. All of these results might not be possible unless you invest into your garden with quality garden soil amendments and fertilizers.

Garden soil amendments are designed to improve the physical properties of your soil. Quality amendments increase water and nutrient holding capabilities and improve aeration and water infiltration of the native soil. The organic matter in an amendment acts similar to a magnet, attracting water and nutrients during times of plenty and releasing them during drier and less nutrient-rich times. Organic matter also loosens and breaks up mineral soil. This increases the air space for plant roots to flourish and allows improved water drainage.

Continue reading “Enrich Your Garden Soil with Black Gold”

Why Buy A Premium Potting Soil?

Black Gold Award Winning PackagingWhy buy a premium potting soil? The reasons are many. As each of us begins a gardening project, we all have the end result in mind: a bountiful vegetable garden, an overflowing flower covered basket or perhaps a thick and rich new lawn! At Sun Gro, we believe that the key to these and many other gardening successes is directly related to the quality of product that we, as a manufacturer, put in a bag. We hope the following chart will illustrate the advantages of Black Gold® made by Sun Gro Horticulture, North America’s largest producer of professional growing mixes – over the competition.

Perlite and Pumice in Potting Soil

BG Perlite frontHave you ever wondered what those little white things in your potting soil are? In most instances they are perlite and/or pumice. Perlite is a mined siliceous rock that is heated and expanded, or “popped” like popcorn, into a white lightweight material, while pumice is a soft, insert-mined stone that often comes from Oregon. What makes Black Gold® Perlite and Black Gold® Pumice particularly desirable is that both are screened for uniformity, with the finer particles removed.

Both perlite and pumice are porous aggregates, meaning they are added to a potting soil to improve aeration and drainage. The addition of perlite and pumice in a potting soil will also increase the moisture and nutrient retention of the potting soil. Just like peat moss, they act like reservoirs in retaining water and nutrients and release them when they are needed by the plant.

Due to its weight, pumice provides bulk density to a potting soil. This trait is valuable when you are growing outdoor containers and you don’t want them to blow over in the wind. Pumice is often the aggregate choice for specialty potting soils (cactus, bonsai) because it provides great aeration and helps anchor roots.

In addition to being a potting soil mix component, perlite is an excellent neutral medium for starting seeds and rooting cuttings. It can also be used to store bulbs and as an essential hypertufa planter ingredient.

The Best Seedling Mix for Germination and Cuttings

BG Seeding Mix frontBlack Gold® Seedling Mix is the best seedling mix for germinating seeds and propagating cuttings. The mix is designed to promote better root development in young plants.

We start with a careful blend of Canadian Sphagnum Peat Moss (which has been double-screened to remove larger particles and sticks); fine perlite and vermiculite to give seedlings and cuttings the aeration and moisture retention they need to develop a good root system. A wetting agent ensures rapid water penetration, and the fine texture encourages high germination and rooting. Transplanting your seedlings and cuttings will be a breeze when plants develop strong root systems as they are grown in Black Gold® Seedling Mix.

When it comes to germinating seeds, it’s simple – all you need is water, light and Black Gold® Seedling Mix. Making sure the growing media stays moist and seeds or cuttings have plenty of water in the early stages of germination or rooting is critical. Our seedling mix is designed with both peat moss and vermiculite, critical ingredients when you want to retain just the right amounts of moisture in your soil. Whether you are starting your seeds in a pot or a tray, they should be kept at temperatures between 60 and 70 degrees and placed in bright but not direct light – a southern exposure is ideal. Some seeds need darkness to germinate, so be sure to check your seed packet for details.

Black Gold® Seedling Mix is made with the same ingredients we use to make our seedling/propagation mixes for commercial greenhouse growers. Seeds typically need to be covered with Black Gold® Seedling Mix at a depth three times the diameter of the seed you are germinating. Larger seeds and seeds planted during warmer times of the year typically need to be planted deeper. Germinating your own seeds or rooting your own cuttings is a rewarding experience and one of the great delights of gardening. So when you are faced with the question, “Why buy a premium seedling mix potting soil?” the answer is clear. When you use Black Gold® Seedling Mix your seedlings and cuttings will have a great place to grow up.