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Thread: Taking the leap: Orchid ferts for my neps

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    mass's Avatar
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    Taking the leap: Orchid ferts for my neps

    So I'm tired of everyone having super gorgeous plants, and wondering why mine are falling behind. Seems the only thing I'm missing (besides natural light) is some sort of fert.
    I picked up a $7.00 bottle of Urea free orchid fert today.
    http://greenhandsofaloha.com/images/OFG408.jpg

    My question is.. what do with it?

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    I've never used that kind, however, I do use the Grow More urea-free at 1/4 strength as a foliar spray or root drench, and it seems to have really impressive, quick results. As a matter of fact, I just finished fertilizing in this way just moments ago. I'm only comfortable using Maxsea in the pitchers because it won't burn them, and because of this, it's what I typically use. I save the Grow More fertilization for about once every two or three months, and use the Maxsea twice a month. You know the process though: water first, then fertilize, then flush a couple of days later. Limit it to once or twice a month.
    Last edited by mato; 12-22-2011 at 02:17 PM.

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    Cthulhu138's Avatar
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    I've always just used Dyna Gro. I assume you just follow the instructions on the bottle. What does it tell you to do ?

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    Whimgrinder's Avatar
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    @mass: mato's advice is sage. I would say start at 1/4 recommended strength or less, applied to the growing media. As mato suggested, water beforehand, wait at least a few hours, then fertilize, followed by a flushing with plain water a few days later. As I mentioned in a previous post, I also apply the same urea-free formula as I water with, as a foliar spray: once every two weeks, diluted at a rate of two drops in 32 oz of water, spritzed on the foliage. I have experimented with spritzing a few drops directly into pitchers on a few plants, and have not seen any damaging effects. However, I would definitely be very sparing with that technique, at least until you know how the plants are going to respond.

    I have considered assigning one of my "miscellaneous maxima hybrids" (IE: Poi Dogs, pedigree unknown) as a test subject, and document just how much nutrient can be applied before toxic effects are observed. I don't wish to kill a plant for the sake of obtaining data, but some risk might be worth it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Whimgrinder View Post
    I have considered assigning one of my "miscellaneous maxima hybrids" (IE: Poi Dogs, pedigree unknown) as a test subject, and document just how much nutrient can be applied before toxic effects are observed. I don't wish to kill a plant for the sake of obtaining data, but some risk might be worth it.
    While I don't doubt that it's possible to kill a plant with over-fertilization in the pitchers, the more common response ime, is that a pitcher will simply shrivel up faster than normal. I see the same thing with Cephs - where even though you lose the pitcher, the plant does get an accelerated growth spurt (not that I like to lose a pitcher). If you want to be conservative, don't fill the pitcher past 50% and keep the solution very dilute. Sensitivity to concentration & level seem to depend on species & age.

    There's also a long sticky thread posted at top of Nep forum on this topic... (as well as many other threads scattered about - it's a very popular topic).
    All the best,
    Ron
    You must do the thing you think you cannot do. --- Eleanor Roosevelt

    *** Growlist / Wants / Offers ***
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    I didn't know Orchid focus was available in the USA. That is what I use to root feed my Cephalotus. The bottle I have suggests 5ml/2 litre, which makes up quite a mild solution, which certainly does my plants no harm. I've measure the conductivity (EC) of it and even at double strength of 5ml/1 litre my bottle makes a solution of only 0.75mS/cm. For comparison, the same company makes a nutrient solution called Ionic, which they suggest 1.5 mS/cm for soil based plants. So, even at full strength of 5ml/2 litre, Orchid Focus is 1/4 the strength of their soil based suggested strength.

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    mass's Avatar
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    Mobile,
    We've got a large chain of hydroponics shops in town out here. Picked up 20 mesh pots at $.20ea. and a bottle of this fert for $7. We have Ionic out here as well. I even got 3 free T-shirts for Ionic, Clonex, and Mother Earth products.
    I did a Nepenthes display for their shop, so I always get taken care of when I need something.

    Thank you for the advice everyone. From what I've picked up here and there over the last 2 years, I think I'm most comfortable starting out with Mat's recommendation. I'll be sure to take some "before and after" pics of the results.

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    Tastes like chicken! Exo's Avatar
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    I use Grow More urea-free at 1/4 strength as a root feed, and occasionally as a pitcher feed, 2x a month, with a flushing of the soil a few days later with RO water.

    I've also begun using osmocote high nitrogen formula pellets at a rate of 3 pelets in eachpot every 6 months, and I get even better results when this is added to the normal fert routine.

    Needless to say, I do not fear the ferts.
    Some days it just isn't worth chewing thru the restraints.

    My growlist: http://www.terraforums.com/forums/sh...255#post961255

    Video of my birth http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Xc5wIpUenQ

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