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Update on mycorrhizal supplement

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Rick

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It's been 2 weeks since I first applied the Plant Success mycorrhizae inoculant.

I applied it to about 20 different plants (including a few compots of seedlings). My main criteria for use were plants that were not in prime condition (poor roots, slow growth, a bit wilted looking....) or had experienced erwinia problems. Most of the plants were potted slippers, but I also did a few Restrepias in baskets, and a couple of mounted phaels.

Two plants which had been reduced to almost nothing by erwinia did die completely. Most plants haven't shown any obvious changes, but a few things are showing some promise. In particular a compot of henryanum seedlings that have been sitting around stagnating for almost a year have really taken off. Some wimpy lowii seedlings are showing some new growth and are looking a bit revitalized. I'm also seeing leaf growth and some new root growth on multi-growth charlesworthii and spicerianum that had been kinda limp and had poor roots since I repotted last fall.

Its a bit early to claim success on this one, but a Restrepia cuprea that I've lost about 80% of the plant to what looks like some kind of fungal "wilt" seems to be turning around too.

I think the results are encouraging so far and planning on a reapplication in the next day or so.
 
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MoreWater

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Just curious if your weather has changed recently too? Because I'm seeing a lot of spring growth now.

But then if your henryanums have been sulking for a year, that's something.

I think something similar is in the last batch of potting mix I used - I should take a look and pay attention....
 

Rick

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Just curious if your weather has changed recently too? Because I'm seeing a lot of spring growth now.

But then if your henryanums have been sulking for a year, that's something.

I think something similar is in the last batch of potting mix I used - I should take a look and pay attention....
The restrepias and henryanums are indoors under lights. So their environment hasn't changed much. It is hard to say how much of the improvement in the GH plants is due to improving spring conditions, but many of the plants I applied it to have been in poor condition since fall. After only 2 weeks I was more concerned over whether or not this would cause death and carnage which does not appear to be the case. If it will revive poor plants or impart better resistance to disease over the long term I'll be happy too. I will really freak out if it produces massive improvement of otherwise healthy plants.
 
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MoreWater

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I will really freak out if it produces massive improvement of otherwise healthy plants.
Totally agree.

I think (now that I am thinking a bit) Al (of the fire. what a nightmare) used a mycorrhizal product (I think). His plants grow 3x faster than mine!
 
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Eric Muehlbauer

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How would this mycorrhizal stuff do with Physan or RD-20 in the water? I add a tiny bit of physan to my fertilizer...not just to prevent bacterial rots, but to make it uncomfortable for bugs in the mix.................Eric
 

Rick

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How would this mycorrhizal stuff do with Physan or RD-20 in the water? I add a tiny bit of physan to my fertilizer...not just to prevent bacterial rots, but to make it uncomfortable for bugs in the mix.................Eric
I suspect it would kill it. This particular inoculant is a mix of several fungal and bacterial species. Several are known to be antagonistic to pathogenic bugs. In particular there is a species of fungus in this mix that is cultured as a commercial "organic" fungicide (sold as Root Shield).
 

Rick

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Rick just wondering how things are going at this point with the Mycorrhizae?
Well it certainly didn't turn anything around that was really bad looking to start with. I would say the majority of those plants crapped out. Especially if they were young. A handfull of so so looking plants are getting new roots, and coming along. The compot of henryanum seedlings continues to add new roots and leaves now. That may be the best news, but I also added some bone meal to that compot a few weeks ago too. The combination may have been the ticket for them.

I would say that its probably not something that will outright kill anything, but I'm not convinced it makes anything allot better.

I'm reviewing the list of what I had added it too. Two plants really stand out, that were adult multi growth stonei and philipinnense that would get on and off Erwinia and loose growths. Adding the mycorrhizae followed by bone meal a few weeks later seems to have put the brakes on that problem.
 

Rick

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Hmm, where do you get it [and bonemeal]?
The mycorrhizal product is available from Worms Way. There are several different ones, but the Plant Success Soluable seems the most appropriate for orchids.

Bone meal is available at just about any garden supply. I wouldn't be surprised if Worms Way has it too. The first stuff I used was some really old stuff my wife had a her work, and not sure where it came from. It was kind of like coarse sand. I recently got some from Home Depot that is a fine powder. It doesn't have quite the high P of the first stuff, but I have no absolute numbers to work with anyhow. However because it is so fine, you can tumble it in some damp bark or CHC and it sticks real well to it when you repot.
 

NYEric

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Thanx, I will make an effort to get some. Unfortunatley it's not really easy.
First of all, there really aren't any garden centers in Manhattan.Second I bottom water and I'm hoping it works into a solution well.
 
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Elena

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I decided to experiment with some bonemeal after reading Rick's posts. It's too early to tell if it has any effect on the plants but man, does it smell for the first couple of days (I grow indoors) :sob: My cats wouldn't stop sniffing the pots :D
 

Rick

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Thanx, I will make an effort to get some. Unfortunatley it's not really easy.
First of all, there really aren't any garden centers in Manhattan.Second I bottom water and I'm hoping it works into a solution well.
If you are talking about the bone meal, you can top dress with it like oyster shell. If you want something really soluble, you might just consider alternating your regular fertilizer with a "bloom booster" that has high P. However, I do like the pH support and "time release" aspect of the bone meal too.

Worms Way mail orders from their website too.
 

Renegayde

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now I wonder about blood and bone meal.....I remember reading something somewhere about adding both to orchids and as I recall I saw where home depot of lowes or some one had a blood and bone meal combo.....but now I cannot recall what each are suppose to add.....I ordered some mycorrhizal stuff from rosemania and afterwards I was reading on another site that the endo and ecto mycorrhizal does nothing for orchids.....LOL I hope I did not waste my money but I figure it cannot hurt to add it to some stuff I am going to repot soon
 

Rick

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The bone meal/blood meal additions should be done based on what you think is lacking.

Bone meal is a pH buffer, low to no N, good Ca, and lots of P.

Blood meal is not a pH buffer, lots of N, little to no Ca and P.

Most of our fertilizers already have a lot of N and K. My goal to adding bone meal was pH support and boosting P. So I'm not interested in adding blood meal.
 
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goldenrose

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I've tried it in the past & didn't notice any difference.
Quite a few mail order sources have it, Gardens Alive being one of them. I don't know that brand would make any difference.
 
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charlie c

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Rick,

Hoping not to come across as an agent provocateur or an alarmist, but why use bone meal instead of a fertilizer formulation with a higher P content (10-52-10,10-60-10,10-30-20, etc).

I know that conventional wisdom says that it is very unlikely that the prion protein that causes bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE)(mad cow disease) will be be contracted by inhaling bone meal dust. And that protein molecules tend to be fairly large. Plants don't tend to absorb anything of that size through their cell walls. And that, for the most part, these plants are not going to be ingested. But why take a chance?

The regulations that keep "downer" cattle out of the human food chain, at least as I understand it, do not apply to the bones of these animals for the processing into bone meal.

I agree with you that bone meal has many good points. I've used it in my vegetable gardens for years and have always seen good results. Better than without it. However, the last few years I've switched to fish bone meal.

Just my two cents.

charlie c
 

NYEric

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Rick, I bottom water so it would never get into the media. I'm sure my dad used it in his garden in the Catskills, plus mad-cow disease sounds like a good cheap high! :crazy:
 

Rick

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Rick,

Hoping not to come across as an agent provocateur or an alarmist, but why use bone meal instead of a fertilizer formulation with a higher P content (10-52-10,10-60-10,10-30-20, etc).

I know that conventional wisdom says that it is very unlikely that the prion protein that causes bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE)(mad cow disease) will be be contracted by inhaling bone meal dust. And that protein molecules tend to be fairly large. Plants don't tend to absorb anything of that size through their cell walls. And that, for the most part, these plants are not going to be ingested. But why take a chance?

The regulations that keep "downer" cattle out of the human food chain, at least as I understand it, do not apply to the bones of these animals for the processing into bone meal.

I agree with you that bone meal has many good points. I've used it in my vegetable gardens for years and have always seen good results. Better than without it. However, the last few years I've switched to fish bone meal.

Just my two cents.

charlie c
You can probably do with the "bloom booster" high P fert types too, but I like the pH support and slow release potential of bone meal. When I was looking into this I saw allot of press about the mad cow issue, but there does not seem to be any connection to BM products causing problems to plants or infecting people growing ornamental plants with it. There was also some discussion that the newer ultra processed BM was not as good as in the past, and may have too much heavy metal residue in it??? The stuff I just got from HD is actually made from pig bone, so I don't know what issues it will have.
 
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