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Shadeflower 09-25-2021 05:40 AM

ES he says in his video you have to use the water to administer fertilizers.

Water he says is the transport vessel to deliver fertilizer.

You should never wet the roots with plain water before fertilizing.

And you should fertilize on every watering.

Then every 5th to 6th watering you feed plain water but he does emphasise it should not be tap water as that is loaded with salts too so flushing with tap water he says is detrimental.

WAtching that video from the 15 minute mark to the 20 minute mark has been the best advice I have seen all year.

He mentions my nemesis the thrip and how a collegue of his had had thrips in his collection for 60 years without realizing!

So that is why I said something has gone lost in tranlation..

It is true he doesn't specify exactly how much MSU to feed after rewatching that bit, all he says is never to feed more than half the recommended dose of a 20-20-20 fertilizer.

Lets say the full dose of a 20-20-20 fertilizer was 1000ppm which is what he used to feed, in this video he says never to feed more than half of that or 500ppm max.

So can we agree now that Vanda's should not be fed more than 500ppm?

---------- Post added at 09:40 AM ---------- Previous post was at 08:39 AM ----------


I tried to determine what strength 1 teapsoon of MSU per gallon works out as.

From my initial research which might be wrong it seems the ppm of such a fertilizer concentration comes out at ~900ppm

From another post posted by Ray a couple years ago, hope I can post this quote to illustrate feeding more is not necessarily better:


Originally Posted by Ray (Post 889494)
Tony, you jumped into an 8-year old thread here, and my recommendations have changed significantly since then!

After several years of frequent application of the MSU RO formula @ 125 ppm N, I noticed that while my plants grew very well, I just wasn't getting the blooming I should. In discussions with folks well-educated in the field, it was suggested I was overdoing the nitrogen. (In retrospect, if you look at what orchids see in nature, it's VERY frequent watering with very pure water containing almost nothing [analyses have demonstrated a max of 15-20 ppm TDS, almost all of it nitrogen], so it make a lot of sense).

After doing some more research on epiphytic plant biology (and plants in general), I decided to modify my feeding regimen, reducing the nitrogen loading to about 20% of the former, to 25 ppm N. I have been feeding at that concentration, using K-Lite (12-1-1-10Ca-3Mg) for 6 or 7 years now, and after about a year or so of that - watering 3-4 times a week in summer, maybe half that in winter in PA - I saw the blooming significantly improve.

Over the next couple of years, I incorporated monthly doses of KelpMax and Concentric Ag Garden Solution into that, and am constantly amazed how well my collection grows, blooms, and multiplies.

mopwr 09-30-2021 09:35 PM

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Thanks for all the replies, it has made me give a second thought to how I'm growing this plant, and, in particular the note about how (per the video with Dr. Motes) imports are often nutrient deficient on arrival. I had heard about how Vandas were notoriously hard to grow and bloom (at least up in northern climates) and never assumed that seemingly large / healthy plants could have come over to me starting at a disadvantage. It makes a lot of sense, especially if you think about how most vandas you see are likely to be imports, at least in my area. I even recall my plant being listed on the Motes website as an import. Well, I have it on k-lite which supplies Ca & Mg, so that is likely helping, but it probably wouldn't hurt to give it a monthly boost for a little while with a little Cal-Mag.

With regards to dosages on fertilizer, I already do 25ppm N dosing for most of my plants that get watered 3 times a week (I target 75ppm N a week in active growth) - my vandas I was giving a bit more because I heard they were heavy feeders. My catasetums get like 300ppm N a week or more at the height of their growth, but that's a whole other story.

I guess I could treat the vandas like my other plants, not so sure now...

In any event, a tangent... Look at this root! It's almost as thick as the stem it's growing from, and now it's pushing two more from the other side. At least the plant is happy enough to grow for me.

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