Amount of fertilizer for wick watering

innochka25October 27, 2007

How much do you use? I just used a tiny amount of Liquid grow by DynaGrow in my very first batch of AVs repotted for wick watering.

By tiny amount I mean the following: I have an about 1gal watering can and I usually add 1/2tsp of the fertilizer to it. So, I had it premixed and poured out (well watered other plants, really) a little more than 3/4 of the mixture and toped it off with water. Do you think it's too much of the fertilizer?

If it's of any help, my soil mixture is 2 parts of AV soil from the store : 1.5 parts perlite : 1 part vermiculite. It looks pretty white and grainy.



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robitaillenancy1(zone 5)

I usually stick to one-quarter teaspoon fertilizer to one gallon warm water. I suspect half a teaspoon is too much fertilizer.


    Bookmark   October 27, 2007 at 9:50AM
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No, no, Nancy, you misunderstood me :) 1/2 tsp/gal was what I used for bottom watering before. Last night I used about 1/8 tsp :) Is that still to much?

    Bookmark   October 27, 2007 at 9:52AM
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The amount of fertilizer doesn't really change all that much because you wick water. Most fertilizers will give two dosages; one for the every once in a while when you remember, and an amount for 'constant feeding'. The amount for constant feeding is usually smaller than the other. It wouldn't matter whether you were constant feeding by wicking or using the fertilizer every time you water. With wicking, you should also leach the pots every couple of months to wash any accumulated fertilizer salts out of the soil.

When you get it working, wick watering is a tremendous time saver.


    Bookmark   October 27, 2007 at 11:13AM
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The liquid "constant feed" method works well with wicks. I have also had good results using Osmocote timed release pellets 1/2 tsp. per 4" pot every 4-6 months. Sprinkle the pellets on top of the soil and scratch in lightly, or mix with soil when repotting. Currently, I am using the 14-14-14 Osmocote. I used to have a formula with trace elements that made me feel I was giving the plants all their vitamins, but the truth is I never actually could see any difference. I find the Osmocote even more appealing to my laziness than constant feed. Also, I am not feeding the algae in the reservoir so much fertilizer.


    Bookmark   October 27, 2007 at 7:24PM
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irina_co(z5 CO)

Inna -

In my opinion the amount of fertilizer you use depends on the humidity. People who live in Utah, Colorado, Arizona etc. - they mostly use 1/8 of teaspoon of fertilizer, because the drier air makes faster use of you fertilizer solution - soil dries faster, plants lose more water while breathing, (humans too - itch-scratch-scratch). So the plant doesn't utilise all the fertilizer - and the fertilizer salts accumulate, even the young leaves in a middle of the crown are covered with tiny crystals of salts. Reducing the amount of fertilizer helps.

People who live closer to the oceans have higher humidity and for them 1/4 of the teaspoon per gallon is better - because otherwise - the plans starve - as Nancy mentioned in her post - the leaves become pale and they just do not have energy to bloom that much.

So everything should be fine tuned to your growing conditions - is the soil to heavy? May be or may be not. Means it is quite close to be right, observe, try to use lighter soil for one plant - see if it likes it. One of the ladies from the club made an extensive research what plants like in her house - and she bought soil from Rob, from Violet Showcase, mixed her own with Miracle Grow Av soil plus perlite and vermiculite - and turned to be that Optimaras definitely prefer one mix, and some other plants prefer #2, and some #3. Go figure...


    Bookmark   October 28, 2007 at 1:15PM
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Where a difference may come in is if you have some plants in front of window and some under grow lights. More algae will form if you use more [1/2tsp] in a window, than under lights, otherwise I dont really know that it matters that much in wicking.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2007 at 12:23PM
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