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Many orchids feed throughout the year, except for a dormant period, if any. But at different periods of orchid growth, the composition of the fertilizer should be different. Nitrogen - needed for vegetative growth, phosphorus and potassium help plant flower buds and bloom more luxuriantly and beautifully. Based on this, you can feed with different fertilizers.
Orchids are known to be epiphytic plants and their growing technique differs significantly from other plants. First of all, orchids grow on a completely unusual substrate - most often chopped pine bark with various additives (sphagnum moss, etc.). Naturally, orchids partially receive microelements from water (if you didn't get the idea to water them with distilled water). However, this is not enough either for growth, much less for flowering.
If it is a small plant, a young seedling, it needs to be fertilized weekly because the plant grows very quickly. Gradually, the plant is gaining decent size, becoming an adult, and feeding will need to be given less often, but in the same amount as before - optimally once every two weeks.
Now in stores there is a huge amount of fertilizers - Russian, Dutch, French, Finnish, etc.
To begin with, the list of fertilizers most commonly used for feeding orchids is as follows:
- Kemira-Lux - fertilizer for decorative flowering plants
- Bona Forte - special fertilizer for orchids
- Greenworld - special fertilizer for orchids
- Pocon - special fertilizer for orchids (Holland)
- Uniflor-growth - fertilizer for decorative deciduous plants
- Uniflor-bud - fertilizer for decorative flowering plants
Less common orchid fertilizers are Etisso (Germany), Substral (Holland), BioEkor (Poland), Schultz orchids, and Eа for orchids (Japanese). From Russian - Ideal. Even less often Fusco (if I am not mistaken, it has already been discontinued).
I made an attempt to review the most popular fertilizers for orchids and collect reviews about them among flower growers living on the vast expanses of the Internet, and not just iplants.ru, a kind of "test purchase":
Fusco and Pocon received the least positive reviews. Fasco did not meet the requirements for orchids, the plants grew more leaves rather than blooming. And about Pocon Pocon opinions were divided approximately evenly - part of the audience believes that it is generally useless (the main reason is called a large number of fakes) and the rest, those who are satisfied, believe that the orchids bloomed and very well. It is quite difficult to guess and buy a really non-fake drug, since, as you know, you can run into a low-quality product in decent shopping centers. It is believed that the Pocon with a red cap is fake, and you should buy a bottle with a yellow cap. Apparently here you can only check - buy fertilizer in a reputable store and if the drug came up, do not try to buy it anywhere.
Further, Of all those mentioned, the most common Kemira-lux - there are only positive reviews about her, I did not come across a single complaint about poor growth, or flowering - this says a lot. Likewise, positive reviews about Bona Forte and Greenworld. However, they are less popular, possibly due to their price and lower selling points.
Only good reviews about Substral, Etisso and BioEkor fertilizers. And only positive comments were left by other Russian fertilizers "Uniflor". Fertilizer Ea for orchids (the name correctly sounds like "e" - "alpha") appeared on the market recently, has positive reviews, in addition to trace elements, it contains enzymes and vitamins (dose 3-5 drops per 1 liter of water). There are doubts and disagreements about the use of fertilizers Ideal and the Garden of Miracles brand.
About other fertilizers and discussions on this topic on the forum: Fertilizers for orchids
Many specialists use organic fertilization of orchids - rabbit, excuse me with poop, as well as bird droppings and droppings of domestic parrots, horse manure. Of course, there is a sense in this and the result is positive on the face, however, only an experienced florist can get involved with such experiments. For an example of using organic matter, I will give a quote from one of the forums: "I take rabbit" jewelry ", about 3 tablespoons (by eye, of course) per 0.5 liter bottle, fill it with water, close tightly and put it in a dark place for the week 2-3. During this time I periodically shake it up. Subsequently, I add a little to the water for watering the plants about once every 2 weeks. This infusion was especially fond of the coelogins."
The difference between fertilizers for orchids
Orchids, as you know, differ in that they need fertilizing with fertilizers almost throughout the year. With the beginning of spring, nitrogen fertilizers are used for successful growth. In the phase of formation of bulbs (from about the middle of summer), fertilizing with phosphorus fertilizer is used to form peduncles. After the formation of the bulbs, potash fertilizers are used for their ripening and during the development of peduncles.
What is the difference between fertilizers - just, mainly, the ratio of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. Traditionally, on fertilizers, the percentage of these substances is listed as NPK.
In nitrogen fertilizer, the proportion of nitrogen is greater than that of phosphorus (approximately 1.5-2 times), in phosphorus, on the contrary. Potassium plays a slightly smaller role, its share most often does not have sharp fluctuations and is quite high in fertilizers and with a high content of nitrogen and phosphorus fertilizers.
Fertilizers special for orchids are bred, as a rule, according to the instructions, for some species and in smaller doses. But fertilizers for flowering plants, for example, Fertika-lux, are taken in a dose 2-4 times less than the recommended one, since the percentage of chemical. substances in it are much higher. Doses of foliar dressing are 2 times less than for root dressings.
Depending on the species, orchids are also fed in different ways, so orchids with delicate and thin roots are fed less often - no more often than after 2-3 weeks, in winter at a lower dose. Orchids with stronger roots - weekly in summer and 2 weeks later in winter.
But we are primarily interested in the NPK ratio:
- Pocon for orchids NPK 5 + 6 + 7 dose of 5 ml per 1 liter of water,
- Fertika (kemira) for flowering plants NPK 16 + 20 + 27 dose for liquid 1/4 cap for 2 liters of water, dose of dry 1/2 teaspoon without top for 5 liters of water,
- Bona Forte for orchids NPK 4 + 2.5 + 6 dose of 5 ml for 1.5 liters of water,
- Substral Orchid Food for orchids NPK 19 + 31 + 17 dose of 1 ml per 2 l of water,
- Schultz orchids NPK 19 + 31 + 17 dose of 1/2 teaspoon of powder in 3 liters of water,
- Greenworld for orchids NPK 5-4-6 dose of 1 ml for 2 liters of water,
- Bioekor for orchids NPK 8 + 1,3 + 5 dose 1 cap per 1 liter of water,
- Etisso for flowering plants NPK 3.8 + 7.6 + 7.5
- Uniflor-growth NPK 70 + 70 + 26 dose 1-2 drops per 1 liter of water,
- Uniflor-bud NPK 47 + 88 + 32 dose 1-2 drops per 1 liter of water,
From this list it can be seen that, in terms of the percentage of NPK, Kemira, Substral Orchid Food, Schultz orchids, Greenworld for orchids, Etisso for flowering, Uniflor-bud are just successful for good flowering of orchids. These fertilizers, in their composition, all contain microelements, and the proportions allow them to be used specifically to stimulate flowering.
This does not mean that the rest of the fertilizers are bad and not at all suitable - they only contain less phosphorus and more nitrogen: Uniflor-growth and Bioekor, for example. It's just that these fertilizers are most suitable for use in the leaf growth phase - for young seedlings, which still do not need flowering until they have gained leaf mass, as well as in early spring or after flowering, but at the time of bud maturation they are less effective.
Fertilizers from Substral are of high quality in themselves, they are represented by a wide assortment and have received good responses, but it must be borne in mind that specialized fertilizers are better suited for orchids.
- The use of fertilizers for orchids is permissible only on a well-moistened substrate, otherwise the roots can be burned. Soak (by immersion) roots for 20 minutes. Then spill with fertilizer solution.
- Doses for fertilizers should be calculated very carefully, if fertilizer for flowering indoor plants, like Kemera-lux, is 3-4 times less than the recommended one. If this fertilizer is specifically for orchids, then in no case should the dose be exceeded, although many experienced orchidists reduce it by 1.5-2 times.
- The best way to feed is more often, but in smaller doses. So, for example, if the fertilizer says to apply every 2 weeks, and the dose is 5 ml per 1 liter of water (conditionally), then it is more effective and safer to fertilize weekly, but at a dose of 2.5 ml per 1 liter of water.
Of all the fertilizers considered, the leader in quality is undoubtedly Fertika-Lux. Personally, I gave her first place in my rating (although her merit also lies in the fact that the price and quality are quite acceptable, and she has received the widest distribution.
Next to her, foreign specialized fertilizers for orchids Substral Orchid Food, Schultz orchids, Etisso and Greenworld, Bioekor for orchids, Uniflor-Bud and Bona Forte were slightly behind, and Bona Forte's fertilizer for orchids turned out to be the least concentrated of all.
- Well, Pocon, as mentioned above, needs to be bought with caution (many fakes).
- You should know that special "orchid" fertilizers are essentially the same as conventional fertilizers for decorative flowering or decorative foliage plants, only much less concentrated and usually with a low nitrogen content. The orchid is actually the same plant and needs the same nutrients. Therefore, the main factor for choosing a fertilizer is the NPK ratio, the quality of the manufacturer's company and the dosage.
Posted by Devi
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