Food for paphs and phrags?

Discussion in 'Beginner Zone' started by Noah Arthur, Aug 31, 2019.

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  1. Aug 31, 2019 #1

    Noah Arthur

    Noah Arthur

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    Hey orchid people! My first post here. I just got my first orchid a couple weeks ago. I was immediately hooked, and now I have five of them, including a stunning Paph maudiae-type in bloom and a Phrag 'Betheva' in spike...

    Most of the slipper care info I've found online is pretty straightforward, but I'm having a hard time figuring out what to feed them. Is it true that paphs and phrags need different fertilizer formulations? The info I found says that paphs need 30-10-10, and phrags need urea-free 20-10-20. :-/

    Also... Will a couple hours of direct sun in the evening harm the paph and/or phrag?

    Thanks!

    Noah
     
  2. Aug 31, 2019 #2

    richgarrison

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  3. Sep 1, 2019 #3

    abax

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    Concerning Phrags., I use K-Lite from First Rays and have been very
    pleased with the results. I'm far too lazy to mix up my own fertilizer
    and K-Lite can be used at 1/4 tsp. per gallon right out of the
    container. In addition, it doesn't turn to mush like Peter's, for
    instance.
     
  4. Sep 1, 2019 #4

    troy

    troy

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    Are you talking about Peter's 15 -5-15 xl cal mag?
     
  5. Sep 2, 2019 #5

    abax

    abax

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    Not particularly that Peter's. I used to use Peter's products a long
    time ago, but found that it did turn to mush in my gh no matter
    how I tried to protect the container. K-Lite doesn't do that with
    minimal protection of the jar.
     
  6. Sep 2, 2019 #6

    troy

    troy

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    I got a 25 lb. Bag of jr Peters Jack's 15 -5-15 cal mag professional xl and 3/4 of it absorbed water in water tight special containers lol.. dammit!! I doubled up on airtight containers and put it in my closet, I have some left
     
  7. Sep 3, 2019 #7

    abax

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    Yep, that was my experience with Peter's.
     
  8. Sep 3, 2019 #8

    Silverwhisp

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    Ditto for me. Did you still use it, even though it was mushy?
     
  9. Sep 3, 2019 #9

    troy

    troy

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    I threw it out, maybe one of the chemistry major members could chime in on this thread, hopefully!!! To validate whether it is still useable or not... there are quite a few members here
     
  10. Sep 4, 2019 #10

    Ray

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    For the most part, the fertilizers we purchase are blends of inorganic compounds, so from a chemical standpoint, if they get wet from absorbed humidity, there is nothing wrong with them.The problem is accurately mixing them.

    If you work with mass per volume, you're out of luck, as there is no way to know just how much water it contains. If you're a volume-per-volume (tsp/gal) user, you're probably OK, as the water doesn't add all that much, so if anything you might underdose a slight bit, and that won't hurt anything.
     
  11. Sep 4, 2019 #11

    Silverwhisp

    Silverwhisp

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    Thanks, Ray. That’s helpful.
     
  12. Sep 6, 2019 #12

    troy

    troy

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    I 2nd that statement above, thanks!! I should not have thrown it away, I thought it had molecular binded
     
  13. Sep 7, 2019 #13

    abax

    abax

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    I pitched it because it pissed me off. Peter's doesn't warn the
    buyer that the fertilizer absorbs moisture.
     
  14. Sep 7, 2019 #14

    cnycharles

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    I think most calcium intensive fertilizers will start collecting water as soon as you open the bag. There’s nothing wrong with it other than it’s harder to measure. If you have a tds meter you just measure your concentration like you would normally. Add some to bucket, measure, add more if needed
     
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  15. Sep 7, 2019 #15

    Ray

    Ray

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    All powdered fertilizers will absorb atmospheric moisture, calcium or not.
     
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  16. Sep 12, 2019 #16

    Stone

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    Not a chemist but it's not the fact that it absorbs water that's the problem, it's the precipitates that could form. Dissolve some in a glass of water and if it all dissolves in a short amount of time it should be fine to use. If some particles form and stay at the bottom of the glass, the fertilizer will no longer be what is on the label.
     
  17. Sep 12, 2019 #17

    Stone

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    (perhaps 1/4 strength for some)
    Pretty much nonsense. I am nursing a number of large phrags at the moment for a friend who is moving. One is a huge multi growth award winning caudatum and the other an as-yet un-flowered multi-growth kovachii amoungs others.
    The owner uses a 22-5-18 with the N about 20% ammonium 20% nitrate and 60% Urea. 1/2 strength once/week. He uses the same for Paphs and everything else.(Perhaps 1/4 strength for some would be in order) Now and then (not very often) he will give some Cal nitrate and some ground limestone. This remains the best (but not the only) way to feed orchids IMO. (not including the delicate types) With all due respect to k-lite users, that has well and truly been debunked and should be relegated to the trash-heap of history.
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2019

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