How to mineralize organic potting soil
Help! I ordered my plants, they will be here by tomorrow or Wednesday latest, and it is doing NOTHING outdoors but raining (and COLD for KY) for the next 7 days. I have my soil on a canvas tarp outside (it's only a 12 gallon tank, so not much soil) but it's only been washed once and dried, and it looks like it is never going to be dry again. I've been told to wash and dry at least five times -- there is no way that is going to happen before the plants arrive. I can't do the substrate without the soil,and without the substrate I can't plant anything.
Can I just dry it in the oven and wash it, over and over again, or is it necessary to dry in sunlight rather than just baking the soil to mineralize it?
Please help me. I thought I had all weekend plus a few days to get this done, and now it is supposed to be cold and rainy every day for at least a week (in JULY!), and the plants are on their way. Or what can I do for my plants to keep them alive for a week?
I've got some laterite; will I be forced to use that instead? I was so hoping to try a dirted tank.
Thanks so much,