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Ferts and containers

Posted by stoneys_fatali 9B Duarte,Ca. (My Page) on
Mon, Apr 21, 14 at 18:36

My plants are still recently containered. I know less ferts are better than over fertilizing. How often do you guys fertilize your containered plants?

My pots are also different sizes.

Also with epsom salts, do you guys prefer to dissolve in water, foliar, or sprinkle around base. I've only used as a foliar. I've heard of compost tea too. Where do you get that?

Thanks!

Dave

This post was edited by stoneys_fatali on Mon, Apr 21, 14 at 18:44


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Ferts and containers

The fertilizers will also tell how often you may want to feed your plants (eg, every week or every other week).

Epsom salts can be used in all the ways you mentioned, so that just depends on the individual. I usually sprinkle around the base and let my watering help dissolve it. Now and then, I'll remember to plant a new plant with some near the root ball also.

Compost tea, like when making tea to drink, is a method to let your compost sit in some kind of water solution for a few days. You then use that liquid for watering your plants. The plants can take up the liquid better/faster than the solid form, so you see good results after giving such a watering.


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RE: Ferts and containers

  • Posted by jutsFL 9b (Orlando) (My Page) on
    Mon, Apr 21, 14 at 19:48

I was using full strength MG (tomato food) on mine, once a week. Just followed the directions on the package, I think it's 1 tbs/gallon. I switched to another fert now, called expert gardener. It's pretty much the same as MG, just cheaper bc it's a walmart brand. I made the switch bc mine are now fruiting/flowering and it has a higher P ratio. When I feed I also add 1/4 tsp Epsom salt and a bit of calcium (don't really have a measurement for it).

-all of mine are in 5gal buckets, with a couple in 3gal

Jay


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RE: Ferts and containers

Yeah, I have one in a 5 gallon and one in a 1 gallon which will be transplanted into a bigger container once it starts taking off.

I topped it and it's now growing small shoots on it's stem :)


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RE: Ferts and containers

  • Posted by jutsFL 9b (Orlando) (My Page) on
    Mon, Apr 21, 14 at 22:28

Forgot to mention above that my plants are all mature in size when using the full strength - I just realized that it could be misconstrued as some growers let their plants fruit and flower at a very small stage. Not sure if this is the case for you or not? If so, when mine were smaller I used the same fert - but at 1/4 strength.

Of note too, since I do fertilize often I use enough water to allow ample drainage out of the holes in my pots. Just a safety measure to help wash any salt build up out.

Jay


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RE: Ferts and containers

Thanks Jay.

My Fatali and Scorpion are small (6-7" tall) with no buds yet. I will definitely go 1/4 strength to stay on the safe side.

My fatali is deeper green on top and lighter green on bottom. My scorpion is more medium green with two older yellow leaves I removed.

Dave


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RE: Ferts and containers

If the lower leaves turn yellow, you're either overwatering or under-fertilizing. That's an easy tell, thankfully.

I mix a slow-release into my potting mix, and then I also fertilize with a reduced dose for my seedlings. Once the plants are full size, I'll fertilize even harder than full strength.

I fertigate until the container mix is saturated....so larger pots are going to get more liquid, and smaller pots not as much.

Josh


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RE: Ferts and containers

So I haven't fertilized these two plants yet Josh. Would you say fish emulsion on my next watering or perhaps blood meal and how much?

Dave


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RE: Ferts and containers

I have a couple of questions when it comes to fertilizers in containers. It is extremely difficult to find anything other than fertilizers with only NPK in them, in my area. Last year I resorted to using epsom salt, blood meal, bone meal, and antacid tablets. I did not get BER and my plants turned out better than expected. I though I was on to something. Since then I have read that the calcium in antacid tablets are not available to the plants, and blood meal and bone meal take so long to break down that they are basically useless in containers. So did my concoction work or did I just get lucky? Are organic fertilizers beneficial in containers? If not how do I get the micro nutrients the plants need? Does dolomite lime provide calcium in containers? Any and all input would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
Scott


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RE: Ferts and containers

I think blood meal is too strong for direct use....but I'll leave it to others to advise you on the strength. I only mix blood meal into my garden soil well before planting, and never into container mixes at all.

So I'd go with the Fish Emulsion, probably half-strength, and then just apply it sooner - in other words, if the recommendation is 2 Tablespoons every two weeks, I'd go with 1 Tablespoon once a week.

Josh


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RE: Ferts and containers

Sounds good!

Dave


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RE: Ferts and containers

Dave: I'd go with the fish also. I'm like Josh; even though blood is relatively fast acting, I only add it to ground or large containers. Personally, I use synthetics when they're babies and small containers because of the micronutes and the challenge to support an ongoing microherd in small containers

Scott: I use organics in LARGE(whiskey barrels) containers only... because of reasons I just mentioned to Dave. No Home Depot or hardware store? Miracle Gro All-purpose has micros; and yes, lime has Ca and Mg. I use gypsum and epsom salts for those 2 nutes because of my already high water ph, and lime raises ph.

Kevin


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RE: Ferts and containers

Kevin, I have a box of MG plant food. Should I go with that as opposed to fish e? I'll go synthetic or organic. Whatever would be best for the plants at this point. I want growth..and really haven't seen any yet.

Dave


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RE: Ferts and containers

Yep. half doses every week if they're in their final containers. You'll have to find ways to get Ca and Mg in there though. Lime has both or get some cal-mag. Some soil mixes already have it.

Like I've mentioned though, because of my water's high ph, I use fast acting gypsum(Ca) and epsom salts(Mg).

By the way, there are lulls in the growth of superhots where growth seems to take a standstill for awhile.

Patience. Namaste ;)

Kevin

This post was edited by woohooman on Tue, Apr 22, 14 at 1:34


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RE: Ferts and containers

Ok. I have a bottle of cal- mag so good :p

Yeah, I know s hots are slower to maturity so I am patient.

Is it okay to mix the MG and cal-mag together in the water can?
Last thing I want to do is "poison" my plants.

BTW, the scorpion is not in his final pot where as the fatali is.

Dave (my friends call me stoney ;)


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RE: Ferts and containers

Since I am using a version of 5-1-1 mix, I am doing as JOSH mentioned.

-- Slow Release
-- Dolomitic Lime (has Magnesium already, plus Calium)

From time to time I will use MG water soluble all purpose ( The blue stuff) at 1/3 to 1/2 strength. I need to read my plants to know what they need.

The Slow Release is good, because it will supply at least a minimum for several months.

I am not using ANY organic ferts.


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RE: Ferts and containers

Scott, bonemeal takes a looooong time to break down, whereas bloodmeal is fairly fast-acting and can burn plants in heavy concentration (so composting it in a large volume of earth first is best). Antacid tablets....I've heard of it, but never seen the science behind it, pro or con.

Josh


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RE: Ferts and containers

thank you josh. Finally, I go my hands on a bag of gypsum. The directions are for gardens and lawns, it says nothing about containers. How much should I use? The bag says 12 pound per 1000 sq Ft.


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RE: Ferts and containers

Fertilizers may list the NPK ratios but they also have other trace components (including some with small amounts of calcium or magnesium)

As for the custom concoction of epsom salt, blood meal, bone meal, and antacid tablets, they just provide some of the same things, but in different concentrations:

For example, epsom salt provides magnesium and sulphur
blood meal - nitrogen
bone meal - phosphorus
antacid - calcium

So you see, you basically made your own mix of fertilizer with different concentrations of the NPK ratios and trace elements. In other words, while they individually each have their moment to shine or be used, you won't necessarily go wrong with a pre-packaged fertilizer either, especially one that does have the ratios you want.

To further add more examples about why each gardener uses some other things besides pre-packaged bags, you can break down what the other items contain, into these same elements that a plant needs, which are sometimes provided by the commercial bags of fertilizers:

Alfafa pellets or tea, compost or compost tea, gypsum, urine, egg shells, lime, worm compost, molasses, etc

There will be some other items which seem like they are not immediately provided by the above, such as azomite or mycorrhizae, so you may wonder if you need to provide those also. In those cases, there are the compost supporters that say, giving a good compost or compost mix means they don't need to go and have all these different products in stock around their home when doing gardening.

But ultimately, it comes down to what you'd like to do and the results you are satisfied with, and how to correct the deficiencies that you see in your soil or plants. From year to year, you may face different issues even in the same garden plot or with the similar plants as before.


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Ferrets in containers?? That doesn't sound like a good combinat... Oh wait.

Never mind!


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I, to got my hots this year from Eric. Been using Goat and a lot of Rabbit Manure for many years, (tea, composting along with barrels of Vege Waste from Restaurants, mixing my own potting mix). Trying the Rain Gutter System this year. Hoping to conserve water (drought is real here in Ca, lucky to have a great deep well. (so far plants are going crazy (5 gallon tubs), Also all above ground bed/ plots are planted as well as direct soil gardens are planted, also growing great. Our temps here are hiting the 90's already. Making a new Brew/Tea this year of anything green (grasses on property) made 50 gal, the smell is beyond description. Brewed for 3 mos, now using with my Manure Tea. Cheers to all have learned so so much over the years from you guys & gals
Donald


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RE: Ferts and containers

Scott, sorry I didn't reply sooner.
For Gypsum, I think you'll add 1 Tablespoon per true gallon of container mix. Then, when fertilizing, supplement with 1/8 - 1/4 teaspoon of Epsom Salts per gallon of water.

Josh


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