04-13-2012, 02:10 PM
"Bloom boosters" do not do diddley to induce spiking or blossoms. It's marketing hype.
Dr. O. Wesley Davidson of Rutgers University devised one of the first commercial "chemical" fertilizers, Mir-Acid, which was markets for azaleas, rhodies, and orchids (among others) that prefer some acidity.
Unfortunately, the heavy use of a high-nitrogen blend will quash blooming in orchids. To get around that, they diluted the nitrogen in the formulation by adding inexpensive phosphorus minerals, and VOILA' - the plants bloomed again. The marketers claimed the product to be a bloom booster, and the myth stuck. In reality, by diluting the nitrogen, they had removed the blocking of blooming, not boosting anything.
In fact, orchids need very little P in their diets, and adding more does nothing for the plants.
The best way to get plants to bloom is to feed them well and completely, not overdosing anything, and give them excellent overall culture. That way they can exercise their genetic disposition to do so.
In the cases of phalaenopsis plants, it may also (depending upon the species in the background), require about two weeks of an average growing temperature 10°-15°F lower than where they have been growing in order to initiate spikes. Nothing chemical will substitute.
Using science and logic
to advance orchid growing