General Chat forum: Fertilizers

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AlohaHoya
Nov 22, 2012 10:28 AM CST
Name: Carol Noel
Hawaii (near Hilo)
It's all about choices.
Thought this would be a good discussion. There are so many choices out there...

Do you think there are different requirements between plants grown 100% indoors and those grown outdoors or partially outdoors?

My growing season is all year long...albeit slower in the winter (shorter days) so I fertilized all year round. Sometimes I remember to add 1/4 to 1/2 strength with every watering, sometimes I hold off the fertilizer for a week or two and then drench all of the plants in a big plastic container with fertilizer in the water so they get a good deep drink. I use the drenching method when the pots are really tight and rootbound because it is harder for the water to get to the really tight places.

Let's hear how you all fertilize and I think it's important to describe your growing conditions: indoors exclusively/outdoors/in a greenhouse etc.
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Imagecpawl
Nov 22, 2012 3:16 PM CST
Name: cindy
Delta, BC,Canada
I also fertilizer year round with every water.I grow almost all my hoyas in leca,so I feel they need the fertilizer.
Fall and winter I grow in doors under T5 lights.In my area we can go weeks and weeks with out seeing any sun.I still have the street lights on out side my house and its 1:00pm.
Late spring and summer I grow the hoyas out side with south and west light with shade cloth.
The fertilizer that I find has done wonders for my hoyas and the few orchids is called K-Lite orchid/epiphyte fertilizer.
AlohaHoya
Nov 22, 2012 11:49 PM CST
Name: Carol Noel
Hawaii (near Hilo)
It's all about choices.
That K-lite sounds perfect... Can you give the breakdown of it...perhaps if we can't find the same thing we can find something similar. What is the NPK? Anything else in the analysis?
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Imagemitzi
Nov 23, 2012 5:02 AM CST
Name: Mitzi Costa
Sao Paulo/Brazil
I grow in doors only, I fertilize very often, but I'm not the right person to talk about fertilizers!

I put two hoyas on my garage garden and was surprised that without any care, or any fertilizer, they are blooming.

So my conclusion is that the sun makes the difference! This 2 hoyas (pubicalyx and carnosa) don't even get enough water, but they are blooming!!!


Mitzi
Imagemitzi
Nov 23, 2012 5:29 AM CST
Name: Mitzi Costa
Sao Paulo/Brazil
......

Carol, you said on the other thread:

Nutricote is a slow release, grey pellets. It would never occur to me to put a slow release fert. on my house plants... Let's start a new thread on fertilizers.....

Why not use a slow release fert on house plants??? I'm traumatized with fertilizers! My experience with them are very bad, very very bad, so now I'm using only liquid fertilizers for orchids in reduced doses!

And what means "grey pellets"?

Mitzi
AlohaHoya
Nov 23, 2012 10:47 AM CST
Name: Carol Noel
Hawaii (near Hilo)
It's all about choices.
Osmocote "grey pellets" = grey colored little balls (pellets). Osmocote, or its' mre expensive sister, Nutricote (in my opinion) are good general fertilizers ... I see them used in nurseries all of the time and I use them on my nursery plants living in the shade house where they get rain almost every night. I'm not an expert...it's just an opinion. I consider Hoyas, Orchids, Tillandsias etc. in a different category = epiphytic/semi epiphytic etc. I know my hoyas need lower doses of the nutrients over a long period of time... The numbers on the fertilizers -NPK= Nitrogen (for general growth) Phosphate (flowers) Potassium (K=Potassium) for roots/fruit. Banana trees need a lot of Potassium as do most fruit trees. Philodendrons like more Nitrogen because they grow and produce leaves for their beauty....not nec. flowers.....

Plants have growing cycles. First they have to produce roots to uptake the nutrients. Then the plant part needs good health in order to produce flowers. Flowering is a different cycle. The soil the plant is growing in is also important... I used to use peatmoss in my mix until I discovered that it stayed really soggy wet (rotting the roots) and when it dried it killed the roots and it was hard to rewet. The water you use is also important...it should be free of chemicals (or as free as you can make it). Rain water is best.

For ME...and I can only speak for myself...I like a fertilizer that is 15-30-15 and I use it half strength or even less than half strength every 2 or 3 waterings.

I'm not terribly scientific...just know what works for me and I have had many successes and many many failures!!!

PS H. carnosa and pubicalyx seem to do better with neglect...don't you find?

Perhaps, Mitzi, your city water caused a bad reaction with the fertilizers (if you leave city water in an open bucket for about 24-48 hours most of the chemicals will evaporate.
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Imagecpawl
Nov 23, 2012 11:56 AM CST
Name: cindy
Delta, BC,Canada
I took a couple photos.mucj easier that way.Thumb of 2012-11-23/cpawl/335f9d
Thumb of 2012-11-23/cpawl/ff1a5e
Sorry not sure why they fliped yhe wrong way.My computer is dead so have been useing my phone.
AlohaHoya
Nov 23, 2012 1:31 PM CST
Name: Carol Noel
Hawaii (near Hilo)
It's all about choices.
Interesting fert, Cindy. Do you get good blooms?
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Imagecpawl
Nov 23, 2012 1:48 PM CST
Name: cindy
Delta, BC,Canada
yes way more blooms since I started last year and my hoyas seem healther and grow better with just this fertilizer.A lot of the ochid growers say this there one and only fetilzer they use.It was the reason why gave it a try.I have been using this formal for about a year and will not go back to any thing else.
AlohaHoya
Nov 23, 2012 4:12 PM CST
Name: Carol Noel
Hawaii (near Hilo)
It's all about choices.
GREAT that you found it! I've never seen it here but will look and try it out.
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Dee2
Nov 24, 2012 7:02 AM CST
Name: Dee Enslow
Chipley, FL (panhandle)
K-Lite Orchid/Epiphyte Fertilizer - the First Rays LLC Website
https://www.firstrays.com/cgi/cart/commerce.cgi?cart_id...

Here is a website I found that sells it.

Dee
rennfl
Nov 24, 2012 7:24 AM CST
Name: Renee
SW Florida
Cindy, I've been using it too, and again had my best growing season. Glad to see another Hoya person using the K-lite. The formula was developed based on leaf analysis of orchids growing in the wild. And since Hoyas grow in the same environments - and theoretically have access to the same nutrients, I decided to give them the same growing conditions.

And my orchids did so so much better as well. Especially the extra Ca, my water here has almost none, so I was having to supplement with Ca before they developed this fertilizer. Now I don't have to supplement with anything.

Renee
[Last edited Nov 24, 2012 7:27 AM CST]
Quote | Post #928664 (12)
plumania
Nov 24, 2012 9:48 AM CST
Name: Alka
South Florida
Dee, when I tried going on the link I got a red screen with the notice 'Hack attempt looged and will be reported to your ISP.'
Wonder what is that about.

There is another way of checking out Rays website.
By logging to his website http://www.firstrays.com
And then select 'Retail' and then check out chemicals in 'Products' section.


AlohaHoya
Nov 24, 2012 10:25 AM CST
Name: Carol Noel
Hawaii (near Hilo)
It's all about choices.
Interesting information. Thank you all. Has anyone applied this foliarly?
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Alchemist9
Jan 25, 2013 11:58 PM CST
Name: Coralee
Colorado
I'm a few months late on this thread but thougth I'd mention I saw Osmocote the fertilizer Carol mentioned at Home Depot today so it should be commonly availible. I passed it by in favor of miracle grow (15-30-15) for the reason Mitzi meantion....I never thought of using a slow release on my houseplants but I geuss that is what those plant stick are.

K-Lite is interesting.The name obviously refers to the fact that this fertilizer is low in potassium but I thought pottasium was supposed to promote booms and nitrogen root growth. Correct me if I'm wrong about this. Maybe what the K-Lite is doing is promoting root growth which seems to be one of the keys to hoyas blooming ....if they are root bound that is. Cindy, Did you notice an improvment in root growth?
Imagecpawl
Jan 26, 2013 9:49 AM CST
Name: cindy
Delta, BC,Canada
Hi Coralee,I have to say that I love this fertilizer.I am about to order 2 more 2 pound tubs so in case they stop selling it I will have a lot on hand.
I have been using this fertilizer now for about 18 months and I have to say my hoyas are growing the best they have ever.
I have seen the growth of the roots improve but the biggest change is how healthy my plants are and all the new pediuncle.
I have only used this fert and have given them all 2 rounds of EM extra with this fine white powder that I picked up when I was vacationing in Bangkok.It came with no name and looks like a bag of something that customs should of locked me up for *Blush* But the thai lady told me to add it to my EM extra that I also picked up.
Here is my baggy of white powder.Thumb of 2013-01-26/cpawl/d6f40e
[Last edited Jan 26, 2013 10:18 AM CST]
Quote | Post #944712 (16)
Alchemist9
Jan 26, 2013 10:17 AM CST
Name: Coralee
Colorado
I may have to look around for K-lite and do a comparison on some of my plants. Wonder what that powder is?
AlohaHoya
Jan 26, 2013 11:33 AM CST
Name: Carol Noel
Hawaii (near Hilo)
It's all about choices.
Magnesium?

Is it powder or crystals?
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Imagecpawl
Jan 26, 2013 11:59 AM CST
Name: cindy
Delta, BC,Canada
Carol,Very fine crystals.
After a few days in water it starts to smell very sweet.
Coralee,You can only get K-lite from http://www.firstrays.com.

[Last edited Jan 26, 2013 12:02 PM CST]
Quote | Post #944750 (19)
AlohaHoya
Jan 26, 2013 12:53 PM CST
Name: Carol Noel
Hawaii (near Hilo)
It's all about choices.
Firstrays sells a wonderful fertilizer for hoyas...especially concocted for epiphytes growing in containers...it's the MSU Orched Fertilizer.

Cindy...sounds like your crystals may be epsomsalts or something similar....
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