FlytrapCare Carnivorous Plant Forums

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Discuss fertilization techniques here. For advanced growers only!

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By iProcreate
Posts:  138
Joined:  Sat Jan 10, 2015 4:17 am
#286639
So I have about 100 baby regia seedlings that are germinating and was wondering what would be the best way to fertilize them so that way they don't die. I have 10 pots with 10 seeds in each pot and each pot is a square that 4"x4". I was thinking about using osmocote pellets but wasn't sure how many to place in each pot and the distance from each plant.

I was also thinking of using Maxsea and was wondering if flushing the soil was a necessary step after fertilizing. If rinsing the soil is just to prevent algae growth then I think I'll be fine
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By tannerm
Posts:  1589
Joined:  Mon Jul 04, 2016 5:24 am
#286642
I'd honestly wait a little bit. Also, Regina does take kindly to root fertilizing. For instance, I spray the leaves of mine with max sea AND root fertilize (I flush it the next day). I'd wait before attempting that though, maybe just a light foliar misting with a VERY watered down mix.


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By nimbulan
Posts:  2082
Joined:  Fri Feb 28, 2014 9:03 pm
#286681
Personally I would just stick with a foliar feed. I've been told that Osmocote can be dangerous because the rate of fertilizer release can vary significantly depending on other conditions (exact soil mix, watering method, temperature, etc) which would explain why some people always end up with dead plants when they use it, but it works well for others.
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By boarderlib
Posts:  1639
Joined:  Fri Dec 04, 2015 1:13 pm
#286739
Just a thought I didn't see mentioned. If you do decide to use the osmocote pellets in the soil, you should keep those pots in a seperate tray. So the osmocote doesn't transfer to any other more sensitive species.

http://www.flytrapcare.com/phpBB3/board ... 30434.html
http://www.flytrapcare.com/phpBB3/board ... 31990.html
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By iProcreate
Posts:  138
Joined:  Sat Jan 10, 2015 4:17 am
#286874
boarderlib wrote:Just a thought I didn't see mentioned. If you do decide to use the osmocote pellets in the soil, you should keep those pots in a seperate tray. So the osmocote doesn't transfer to any other more sensitive species.

http://www.flytrapcare.com/phpBB3/board ... 30434.html
http://www.flytrapcare.com/phpBB3/board ... 31990.html
Yeah I definitely will. I finally made a grow rack so now I have space for them and they'll have their own trays.
By iProcreate
Posts:  138
Joined:  Sat Jan 10, 2015 4:17 am
#286875
nimbulan wrote:Personally I would just stick with a foliar feed. I've been told that Osmocote can be dangerous because the rate of fertilizer release can vary significantly depending on other conditions (exact soil mix, watering method, temperature, etc) which would explain why some people always end up with dead plants when they use it, but it works well for others.

Huh, I didn't know that. I'll try foliar feeding then instead of osmocote. Is it really necessary to rinse the soil every so often? I'm not worried about algae and mold growth
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By nimbulan
Posts:  2082
Joined:  Fri Feb 28, 2014 9:03 pm
#286890
iProcreate wrote:Huh, I didn't know that. I'll try foliar feeding then instead of osmocote. Is it really necessary to rinse the soil every so often? I'm not worried about algae and mold growth
I have never personally found soil flushing to be necessary, but I tend to only spray plants that are large and fill their pots. With smaller ones I apply fertilizer directly with a glue/oil applicator.
By David F
Posts:  1649
Joined:  Sun Jan 02, 2011 8:41 pm
#286893
Hello everyone, firstly I'd like to say that growing D. regia from seed is a, sadly, misunderstood subject. Many have come to the conclusion that D. regia seedlings will die unless they are "fertilized" and a few early growers of the seed reported success using "osmocote pellets".

These days, I have not yet come across a grower who is able to corroborate the claims that D. regia seedlings "need" fertilization, particularly soil fertilization.

D. regia seeds are quite large and contain quite a bit of energy, upon germination the humidity should be decreased significantly after the first carnivorous leaves are visible (i.e. opening the bag or moving the seedlings) to prevent damping off.

If the seedlings are provided with a high amount of light they should be fine growing in conditions with a lot of water up to and above 3/4ths of the pot can be submerged, though as they age they will appreciate drier and drier conditions as they mature, particularly when they start holding onto, say, 5-6 leaves.

If the seedlings are mature enough, a foliar spray is greatly appreciated; however, the little D. regia will equally appreciate a small meal on one leaf. If you do foliarly fertilize, you will inevitably spray the soil and consequently you'll have to flush the soil out, and preferably the tray should be cleaned periodically as well. Because the soil needs to be flushed out I find that feeding the leaves is a simpler and safer approach.

The link bellow is written by Petar Kostov, an experienced D. regia grower, to help you guys out.

http://telopeanursery.com/articles_en.p ... sera_regia
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By nimbulan
Posts:  2082
Joined:  Fri Feb 28, 2014 9:03 pm
#286902
David F wrote:These days, I have not yet come across a grower who is able to corroborate the claims that D. regia seedlings "need" fertilization, particularly soil fertilization.
While I don't have a lot of experience, my impression has been that the people who claim that D. regia does not require food or fertilization when small generally start their seeds in a location where the plants will naturally catch their own food (I.E in a greenhouse.) I'd like to properly test the theory myself whenever I can get ahold of enough seeds to experiment with, but I'm playing it safe with my one seedling and feeding it heavily with moths and moth larvae. When the weather warms up I'll be moving my plant outdoors to live out there permanently and it should be able to feed itself quite well.

Now I've certainly seen people lose their D. regia seedlings despite feeding but have never been able to collect enough information to determine a possible cause. Some people will even have them die back at a small size only to regrow a month or two later.

Personally, I am always wary of soil fertilization. Even if plants like these can tolerate it, the plants are carnivorous for a reason - because they naturally grow in areas with very poor nutrient availability in the soil. It's not normal for the plants to have so many nutrients in the soil and besides the obvious issues (algae/fungus growth, accelerated soil breakdown) it can result in reduced expression of carnivory (Sarracenia will grow more phyllodia-like leaves, Nepenthes can product fewer pitchers, etc.)
By David F
Posts:  1649
Joined:  Sun Jan 02, 2011 8:41 pm
#286966
I'm not challenging the unique adaptations of carnivorous plants. Nor am I challenging that the plants will not feed on their own.

I'm saying that fertilization of seedlings, which to my knowledge will not recover easily from damage, is complicating the matter and resembles in my mind gambling.

My philosophy is why bother with fertilizer when they are so young when I can either feed them or allow them to feed themselves.

In regards to "loss of carnivorous function", this is a topic which is more derived in speculation and intuition than anything else.
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By nimbulan
Posts:  2082
Joined:  Fri Feb 28, 2014 9:03 pm
#286967
I completely agree that soil fertilization amounts to gambling. One local grower here has tried it multiple times and ended up with nothing but dead plants by following the same methods other growers have apparently used successfully. It certainly works for some people but it's not something that should be suggested to others without warning about the potential dangers. I'd certainly rather not risk it and will feed my plants, generally with fish food or drops of liquid fertilizer on the leaves of seedlings.

As to the loss of carnivorous function - this topic has actually been studied with Sarracenia purpurea http://www.pnas.org/content/99/7/4409.full and should be at least somewhat applicable to other Sarracenia species though it is certainly speculation how this behavior relates to other carnivorous plant genera. I have heard anecdotal evidence of Nepenthes producing fewer pitchers as a result of regular soil fertilization too but no information in regards to any other carnivorous plants.
By David F
Posts:  1649
Joined:  Sun Jan 02, 2011 8:41 pm
#287072
The study you've sited, is among a limited studies which have attempted to study the carnivorous functional loss. Saying that increased phylodia is "empirical evidence" for loss of function in carnivorey is only one discussion this paper mentions. This paper and other papers like it are flawed in the sense that they offer no alternative reasons for what they are observing. Which is why I use such a strong word like speculation :).
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