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variegation on SH phrag

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Eric Muehlbauer

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Well, this was one of the very few phrags I have had success with in SH. But, as you can see in the photo, its losing color on the new growth..(ignore the pale bottom leaf, I expect old leaves to turn yellow). It actually looks attractive, but I doubt its a sign of health...I have switched to only watering with fertilizer solution (MSU, 1/2 tsp/gal), with a dose of epsom salt solution about 3-4 weeks ago. Any ideas? Thanks, Eric

 
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lienluu

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Hey Eric,

When I tried S/H, i found that Phrags were the hardest to switch over and did the worst for me. That came to me as quite a surprise. In the end, I gave up as the results were just awful.

By the way, I resized your image for you, I hope you don't mind. The one you had posted was huge and also 1.5MB!

Lien
 

dave b

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Prior to switching to fertilizer water only, how often did you fertilize? It looks like nutrient deficiencies, perhaps more than just Nitrogen. Also, how long has this phrag been in SH? I guess im asking so many questions to just gather info in general. There is still a lot of varying opinions/experiences on using SH, and as im trying it on many of my plants (ivy, phal, phrag, oncidium), i like gathering info as i go along.
 
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Eric Muehlbauer

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Thanks for adjusting the picture, Lien....I had set it at a lower size but it didn't go through that way...I am definitely not thrilled with SH overall....I doubt I will continue to use it. My most successful SH plants have something wrong...an ODA that has blotchy leaves (just sent off for virus testing) and a Phal schilleriana that has loads of roots but hasn't done any top growth since going into SH. This phrag went into SH in June...as I said, its one of the few phrags (one of only 2) that appreciate SH. It actually did better before, when it got fertilizer once a week, and was topped off by plain water the other days. When I posted my SH comments a few weeks back, regardling my less than spectacular experience, it was the general advice to top off SH plants with fertilizer solution every time I topped off, so I tried that. This has gotten worse, the others are the same. I use MSU fertilizer, 13-3-15, 1/2 tsp/gal. 75ppm N according to the label. Take care, Eric
 

gonewild

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What size container is the plant in?
The holes look rather close to the bottom in the picture.
What size of Leca is that it looks very coarse with a lot of air space.
1/2 tsp msu per gallon is very weak in my opinion.
 

dave b

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Oh ya, good re-use of the water bottle. Ive done the same with a couple of mine.
 
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PHRAG

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I am going to have to agree with Lance on this one. I had a similiar looking ailment killing one or two of my orchids a while back. Lance suggested I rethink my fertilizing strategy. After reading my bottle of liquid MSU concentrate a little more closely, I found the problem.

I wasn't using enough fertilizer per gallon. I had been using about the same as you Eric, 1 teaspoon every other time I watered. This equated to about 50 ppm. I have since started using 4 teaspoons per gallon, or 150+ ppm according to the label. In just two weeks, things are noticeably greener, and new roots/leaves/growths are springing up everywhere. My Mexipedium has had a tiny new growth about a fourth of an inch tall for months now. After upping the amount of fertilizer, it sprouted by triple seemingly overnight. No other changes in my growing area have been made.
 

NYEric

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Eric, I found the ones I got from you in need of a cleaning and more water. I'll post the photos of their progress later. eric.
 

likespaphs

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PHRAG said:
...This equated to about 50 ppm. I have since started using 4 teaspoons per gallon, or 150+ ppm according to the label.....
dude. how did i not see that when i read the label? perhaps i skimmed instead of scanned...
i love knowing ppm's! does that make me weird?
 

Carol

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All of my phrags are in s/h, a total of 9, and I fertilize with MSU for RO. All are doing wonderfully and even the Phrag Schroderae 'Claire' AM/AOS, the shy bloomer, is in spike after not spiking for 3 years. I found that I have to use 1/2 tsp per gallon instead of 3/4 tsp per gallon as with the paphs, otherwise I get leaf tip burn. Here is a list of the ones that bloomed for me this year:

Phrag Eric Young
Prag Cape Sunset, still in bloom
Phrag St. Peter, in spike for the 1st time
Phrag Schroderae 'Claire', in spike
Phrag Rosalie Dixler 'Beechview' AM/AOS
Phrag bessae, in spik for the 1st time
Phrag Ashley Wilkes
 
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Cinderella

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Gosh that is a huge differential, between 1/2 tsp per gallon and 4 tsp per gallon. Howz a girl know what to do?
 

NYEric

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Eric, here are 2 of the Phrags I got from you, Thanx again. After cleaning to remove soil and scale from deep inside leaves I transferred one to a mix of coconut chips, [it's amazing what that spells if you leave off a letter!:evil: ] diatomite, bark, CHC, and pellets, the otheris in just coconut chips. you can see the progress of the new growths. I think the increased moisture is helping.
 

gonewild

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Cinderella said:
Gosh that is a huge differential, between 1/2 tsp per gallon and 4 tsp per gallon. Howz a girl know what to do?
Liquid fertilizer vs. Dry fertilizer
The liquid MSU fertilizer is not as concentrated as the dry when you buy it.

John said 4 tsp per gallon using the liquid MSU fertilizer.
One tsp per gallon of dry MSU fertilizer will give about the same strength.
 

gonewild

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Carol said:
I found that I have to use 1/2 tsp per gallon instead of 3/4 tsp per gallon as with the paphs, otherwise I get leaf tip burn.
How often to you water your plants?
Do you fertilize every time you water?
What media are they planted in?
How much light to your plants get?
 

gonewild

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NYEric said:
BTW I hardly fertilize at all, and always w/ a reduced solution.
Your organic mix will tend to hold nutrients so a reduced solution will be sufficient to maintain the needed nutrient level as compared to Leca.
 

NYEric

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I still dont see how people can believe, one single media, baked clay pellets for example, can be as good as a mixed media when in nature you find plants growing on rocks, w/ earth, plant materials, moss, etc.
 

Candace

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I don't know if leca is "as good", I guess that's a debate for a new thread. What it comes down to is what medium allows best growth and flowering in many times, an unnatural environment(indoors etc.). I tried many mediums before leca. I've used many types of bark mixes, spag., coco chips, coir and mixtures of all of them. None of them worked well for me. Or should I say my plants? I grow mainly in a greenhouse and these "natural" organic mediums didn't work with my schedule or for my plants needs. Leca has made a hobby enjoyable rather than a fight. I really think it's a combination of what works for your orchids and your watering/fertilizer schedule.
 

gonewild

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NYEric said:
I still dont see how people can believe, one single media, baked clay pellets for example, can be as good as a mixed media when in nature you find plants growing on rocks, w/ earth, plant materials, moss, etc.
Great question.

What the media is made out of is of no concern to the plants. What concerns the plant is that it get the proper moisture and nutrients from it's roots.

I choose to use clay pellets as a media because it is inert. I know exactly what nutrients are in it at all times. It does not decompose so the moisture holding capacity and air space remain constant for the duration of the potting. It is almost impossible to over water plants growing in clay pellets. I like the nutrient solutions applied often to the plant foliage as well as the roots, clay pellets accept this volume of water. Clay pellets are clean, no pieces of organic debris floating in my trays or clogging up a pump. No organic crumbs on the carpet!

If I were to choose a single media that is most natural for growing orchids it would be sphagnum. Almost all orchids growing in nature have moss around their roots to some degree. But it is not simple to grow in straight moss because of decomposition.

If I were going to grow in an organic mix I would mix of CHC (1/2") and pumice.

Why do you mix so many different ingredients into your media?
 
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