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 fertilising cactus and succulents

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simon 1



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PostSubject: fertilising cactus and succulents   Sun Feb 17, 2013 5:15 pm

does anyone use fertiliser during the growing season? is there a readily available 2:7:7 fertiliser or a close equivalent available in Australia
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SneakyCuttlefish
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PostSubject: Re: fertilising cactus and succulents   Mon Feb 18, 2013 10:20 pm

I just use good old blood and bone and a weak dose of Searles 5 in 1 liquid fert twice per growing season. There are a number of different slow release cacti ferts but I find them to be less effective.

With blood and bone you can use ridiculous amounts of it without hurting the plants. I placed a 3cm thick layer around the base of one of my san pedro's just to see what happened. It threw multiple pups and grew like crazy.

Just be sure not to apply any nitrogen fert towards the end of the season.
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supergirl

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PostSubject: Re: fertilising cactus and succulents   Wed Feb 20, 2013 10:27 pm

Sounds pretty good. It's always such a thrill to see your plants pumping after a bit of attention.
I'd be wary of most products sold as specific for cacti and succulents since past experience has taught me there's a lot of crap on the market.
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Hellonasty
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PostSubject: Re: fertilising cactus and succulents   Thu Feb 21, 2013 9:33 am

supergirl wrote:
Sounds pretty good. It's always such a thrill to see your plants pumping after a bit of attention.
I'd be wary of most products sold as specific for cacti and succulents since past experience has taught me there's a lot of crap on the market.

I agree good advice from supergirl. Most specific cacti ferts are expensive and on most accounts don't perform nearly as good as a general multi-purpose fert. As for Nitrogen ratio I have a contrasting view and I base this on experience alone, I have found cacti grow better with normal to high nitrogen content in the soil and there is no need to buy a low nitrogen fert.

@SneakyCuttlefish, Why do you apply nitrogen ferts at the end of the season ?

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SneakyCuttlefish
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PostSubject: Re: fertilising cactus and succulents   Thu Feb 21, 2013 10:27 am

Lol I think you misread my post. I don't apply any nitrogen ferts at the end of the season. If anything I try to time it so the soil is mostly depleted of all nutrients just before the season ends.

Up on the tablelands we get regular frosts during winter. My current theory is if the dormancy and hardening process is started earlier it should help to reduce mortality rates during extended cold periods. This especially applies to those species that rely on certain unmentionable chemicals as defense mechanisms against microbial and environmental influences.

I haven't applied this theory to a wet winter yet so I don't know how excessive moisture and cold temps will effect the plants. Also I have only acquired the bulk of my collection over the past few years (which in the cacti world is merely a blip in time) so I have no idea what species are more susceptible to frost related injuries.

Any thoughts or experiences with this issue?

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