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Thread: Maxsea or Neptune's Harvest for Drosera Seedlings?

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    Oh, the humanity!! TheFury's Avatar
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    Maxsea or Neptune's Harvest for Drosera Seedlings?

    Hey everyone - I'm having issues raising pygmy Drosera gemmae to adulthood. I try sprouting them uncovered in my grow rack and they dry out and shrivel up within two or three months--it seems that ambient relative humidity in my apartment is just too low this time of year. I try covering them in a plastic cup and they grow very happily and produce copious amounts of dew, but even the most conservative application of pulverized bloodworms and betta pellets leads to the whole seedling being overrun by mold, followed by its swift demise.

    I've read various threads on this forum that say that sundews love Maxsea. I've also read vague statements on certain online nursery websites that say that Maxsea is gentle enough to use on seedlings. Being able to use a fertilizer in place of solid food in such a high-humidity environment would have the obvious benefit of not promoting mold growth. This leads me to two questions:

    1) Neptune's Harvest (the only brand locally available) is another seaweed-based fertilizer. Can it be used interchangeably with Maxsea?

    2) Are either brands gentle enough to use on seedlings, even in weak concentrations, such that they yield good results?

    Anyone here tried either brand on seedlings?

    Thanks!

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    Hello, I must be going... Not a Number's Avatar
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    I've never tried fertilizing Drosera seedlings. You might be better off with Osmocote pellets.

    I normally infest my pygmy Drosera pots with springtails which will supply all the food the plantlets will need until they are established enough that you can feed them. Just put a pot of damp peat moss outdoors on the ground for for few days to attract springtails (yes even in winter). Then bring it indoors and place it by your Drosera pots and the springtails will infest the other pots. Let the transfer pot dry out to kill any fungus gnat larvae and you're good to go.
    Grand Hotel... always the same. People come, people go. Nothing ever happens.

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    Tastes like chicken! Exo's Avatar
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    I've used maxsea with great success, by misting the plants with it once a month at 1/4tsp per gallon concentration.
    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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    Hey Fury,
    Sorry I can't offer any advice on the maxsea, but looks like it should do well according to Exo.
    I didn't realize anyone went to the extent of infesting the seedling pots, but they sure do wonders, so I'll have to try that sometime!

    But in general, you can go light on feeding with the pygmies---even small fungus gnats seem to lightly mold on their leaves (in the greenhouse I'm growing them in), and only very small portions of food will not mold. From the pics I've seen of feeding your Drosera capensis, I'm actually impressed by how well your plants handle that amount of food. But for pygmies, they're just little babies and I so usually tediously feed mine with very tiny portions of food (tweezering it on or using an eyedropper, as Brian Barnes suggested as a mold-avoidance method for feeding his D. schizandra. The tweezer method is quite tedious. So if you don't want to devote a lot of time, seems like maxsea or a springtail bonanza will work better for you.
    Last edited by Joseph Clemens; 03-01-2011 at 09:42 PM. Reason: N. A.
    Visit The Sundew Grow Guides: http://www.growsundews.com
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    Happy Growing!

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    Oh, the humanity!! TheFury's Avatar
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    @NaN - You say you can get soil infested with springtails outside even in the winter - do you think it'll work for me in the dead of winter in the northeast? Not sure if springtails live up here... do they?

    @Exo - good to hear that endorsement. Did you use it on seedlings, too? Also, do you think Neptune's Harvest fish & seaweed fertilizer would work as an alternative? I've stumbled across threads on various forums in my Googling that have mentioned that people do use it on CPs, but references seem vague. I was wondering if anyone here had real experience with the stuff.

    @CP - so I'm overfeeding my plants, eh? Yeah, that sounds like me. I'll go easy on it. I usually only feed plants like my D. capensis every month or so, but I suppose that when I do, I put too much food on. The way I fed my pygmies in this case was to dip a toothpick in dry powder and simply "paint" the dust on. Only very small particles transferred on to the leaves, but that was still enough to cause a mold explosion.

    Should I pull and discard the mold-infested young pygmies before the mold spreads? I opened my humidity dome to help combat the mold, but unfortunately ALL my young pygmies started to look mighty ragged after just a day, so I put the dome back on.

    Thanks for the replies, everyone. Any more experience with seaweed and/or fish-based fertilizer from anyone?

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    That's wierd i just collected gemmae from my hyrbrid 'Roseana' and i planted them Agust.
    Last edited by Joseph Clemens; 03-02-2011 at 07:26 AM. Reason: N. A. - there is no CP cultivar named 'Roseana', can you provide more info, please.

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    Hello, I must be going... Not a Number's Avatar
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    Subclass Collembola (springtails)

    http://www.collembola.org/
    Ecology: Collembola are soil and litter dwelling, preferring wet or damp surroundings. Collembolans inhabit soil and leaf litter, although some species move actively over the surfaces of bark and flowers in daylight. They may be found in moss, under stones, in caves, in ant nests and termite nests but also in the intertidal zone on the coast, on the surfaces of lakes and ponds or snow fields of gletjers. Collembolans are major components of terrestrial ecosystems (and particularly significant members of the soil communities), constituting a significant proportion of the animal biomass and are thus frequently and easily found. In forest soils they can reach densities of 200 to 1800 individuals per dm3, densities only surpassed by the acarian soil population (Handschin, 1955).
    http://insectspedia.blogspot.com/201...now-fleas.html
    Collembolans have vastly different temperature tolerances and preferences, ranging from a species of Sminthurides found in volcanic vents with temperatures as high as 48C to an Antarctic species shown to survive temperatures below –30C. Survival (and activity) in low temperatures has been studied extensively. Some Collembola are primarily inhabitants of glaciers and ice fields and others are dominant members of the arthropod faunas of high latitudes.

    Winter-active Collembola in temperate climates often build up large numbers under snow and on suitable warm days pour out onto the snow in vast numbers as snow fleas. Extreme cold tolerance always involves supercooling with the accumulation of cryoprotective substances.
    Grand Hotel... always the same. People come, people go. Nothing ever happens.

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    Oh, the humanity!! TheFury's Avatar
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    ^^ well color me educated. I'll try that!

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