Causes of brown leaf tip on new Phrag growth?
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  #11  
Old 02-25-2021, 07:17 PM
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Causes of brown leaf tip on new Phrag growth? Female
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Originally Posted by varda.elentari View Post
That's good to know about Cymbidiums - they're my favourite genus and I'm hoping to grow more of those as well. My tap water was somewhere around 200-250 ppm last time I checked. So that would be fine for the Phrag?
Marginal for Phrags - RO would be better. Fine for Paphs (The Huntington Library and Botanical Gardens in southern California has a world-class Paph collection, and they found that their Paphs actually do better with well water than with RO. They probably appreciate the high calcium. Phrags do get RO) Cymbiidums are pretty bullet-proof. There are a few that get black leaf-tips from salt build-up but most aren't fazed at all. And even those that have the leaf-tip issues grow and bloom just fine with even bad tap water.
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  #12  
Old 02-25-2021, 10:40 PM
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Causes of brown leaf tip on new Phrag growth? Female
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Thank you for all the super good info Roberta!
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Old 02-26-2021, 07:03 AM
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Causes of brown leaf tip on new Phrag growth? Male
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Originally Posted by Roberta View Post
Marginal for Phrags - RO would be better. Fine for Paphs (The Huntington Library and Botanical Gardens in southern California has a world-class Paph collection, and they found that their Paphs actually do better with well water than with RO. They probably appreciate the high calcium. Phrags do get RO) Cymbiidums are pretty bullet-proof. There are a few that get black leaf-tips from salt build-up but most aren't fazed at all. And even those that have the leaf-tip issues grow and bloom just fine with even bad tap water.
My info might be outdated, but one of the reasons their paphs did better with well water was that they fed only with calcium nitrate...
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Old 02-26-2021, 10:50 AM
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My info might be outdated, but one of the reasons their paphs did better with well water was that they fed only with calcium nitrate...
Brandon Tam wrote an article in Orchids, AOS magazine and mentions this. I am sure that the Paphs aren't being fed with just calcium nitrate... the well water is loaded with calcium carbonate. (This is southern California... that's the major contributor to TDS around here) I'd expect that the well water at the Huntington isn't that much different than the city water, it's just on their land and therefore they don't have to pay for it. My layperson's guess as to why the Paphs like hard water is that many, if not most, grow on limestone cliffs and other areas with plentiful limestone and so encounter lots of calcium in their natural environment.
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Old 02-26-2021, 09:02 PM
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I took notes when Brandon spoke to our society. From:
Paphiopedilums by Brandon Tam, Huntington - DVOS 2017 09 21

Quote:
Brandon fertilizes the slipper collection with only one product: YaraLiva Calcinit 15.5-0-0. He does not use anything else, and does not add trace minerals. He does not measure nor adjust the pH of his fertilizer solution. He mixes a concentrated solution of 8.61 ounces of fertilizer per gallon of well water (this is 64.5g/l) in a 10-gallon bucket. Then he uses a fertilizer injector at a 1:100 dilution ration to mix this with his well water. He waters the orchids with this solution at every watering. Brandon recognizes the TDS of his well water plus fertilizer is very much higher than normally recommended for slipper orchids, but his results prove his method works....

YaraLiva Calcinit is sold as a granular fertilizer. The company says it contains calcium ammonium nitrate....

Misters run along the long sides of the greenhouse. They are on a timer to spray several times per day. Wet-loving plants like Phrags are under these misters....

The Huntington has 3 wells on the property. The well water has from 200-800 parts per million total dissolved solids. Brandon uses this water for the entire slipper orchid collection, including Phragmipedium....
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