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Member Since 24 Jul 2017
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#1575524 Chiltepin cross

Posted by thefish on 14 August 2018 - 10:23 PM

Last year I crossed Cumari Pollux with Aji lemon drop, Aji Amarillo, Aji Ahuachapan.

I wonder why wild types have dominant genes. Do you have any articles to link that would explain that?


people looking to create really novel hybrids often search for "land-race" or naturalized varieties of plants because they typically have a higher amount of genetic diversity compared to typical hybrids.  they may have different growth habits, appearance, secondary compounds or  other traits that you simply wouldn't find in a domesticated plant. what happens when too much hybridization occurs is that over time we as breeders tend to inadvertently or deliberately select for certain traits and the plants become less genetically variable and certain traits all but disappear. you cant recover these traits because all similar varieties or crossing partners have been been bred similarly and the just aren't prevalent. there is a lot of information online and in libraries about plant breeding and its hard to summarize in a paragraph. some of it can get quite complex and require thousands and thousands of crosses and diligent selection and culling to reach a particular breeding goal.

#1570962 Scientific Observations of Environmental Stress on Pepper Varieties

Posted by thefish on 25 July 2018 - 07:45 PM



I love your optimism, but you underestimate the power of misplaced faith in traditional knowledge.  Say it after me... "that is how we've always done it..."  "That is how we've always done it..." "That is how we've always done it..."


Look at the table I posted. Pretty convincing result. No fertilizer produced the hottest peppers but the lowest yields. Potassium was all but useless in promoting flowering or fruit set. Both increasing potassium and reducing nitrogen are often recommended as interventions to get fruit to set. Its clear that you can get hotter peppers via modulating the environment... but at what cost? Many plants flower when they are happy and ALSO when they are on the brink of death. Its not surprising that peppers have developed the response to boost capsaicin when under stress because it probably adds a little insurance that the few pods they produce when on the brink of death wont be eaten by mammals. I'll keep my peppers happy and well fertilized because as long as I'm not over doing I'll get nominally less spicy peppers but massively bigger yields.

#1570725 Using Flower Fertiliser to boost flower production ?

Posted by thefish on 24 July 2018 - 03:47 PM

Bloom boosters are a myth. Good culture and consistent fertilization when the plant is in growth phase will always produce better than constantly tweaking your fertilization regime.


I've been growing a plumeria in a container for about 2 years- if you look online you will find many people trying to push insanely high phosphorous concentrations as plumeria fertilizer. Yet you will never find anyone put a bloom booster to a complete nutrient with a scientifically validated NPK ratio. Its because they're all selling snake oil or would rather believe in horticultural hearsay. Plumerias bloom when they have all of their nutrient needs met not because you dumped a bunch of phosphorous on their roots. The same can be said for most flowering plants. I've been using dynagro foliage pro (9-3-6) on my plumeria weekly and I have had continuous blooms (10 + flowers per head) for months. I use the same on my peppers and have no problems with yield/flowering/fruit set whatsoever. Save your money and take a pass on the bloom formulas. 

#1570149 Supplementing Nitrogen Rich Soil

Posted by thefish on 21 July 2018 - 07:59 PM

Auxins and Cytokinins.  Found in seaweed and kelp.


Follow manufacturer instructions, and go forth and prosper.


Keep in mind that these hormones probably don't survive the drying process or storage in appreciable amounts. Kelp meal is a great source of micronutrients and amino acids and a great carbon source for fungi though. If you wan't the benefits of  kelp hormone wise you need to use a legitimately produced liquid kelp extract. Preferably a fresh kelp extract that was extracted in such a way that does not damage the cytokinins, auxins and gibberelins. Many places do not list the ratio of these hormones on their kelp extract, which is important. You don't want to boost top growth and have your root system not be in balance with the vegetative part of the plant. 


Here is a great write-up on how kelp extracts work:





#1567242 A couple of plants have not been happy all the way.

Posted by thefish on 11 July 2018 - 02:54 PM

Just to catch up on this.
Flushed all my plants twice. In total each 3 gal pot got 6 gallons of just ph'd water over a week.
I did them all as I noticed similar symptoms in a couple of pepper plants.
I'm abroad and Wife is in charge and now fed them half strength organic tomatoe food.
She says they look better but I'll find out next week.
I also sprayed all with a bug killer.

And by the way.....COME ON ENGLAND TONIGHT!!!


I assume mites are a given and treat my plants in a prophylactic manner. this is usually presented as stunted new growth and curled and deformed leaves. i have taken to spraying emulsified neem every other day for a week or two for a serious infestation and then weekly as a preventative throughout the growing season. I also am next to a row of poplar trees that constantly blow aphids and mites onto my plants so that might be the reason. recently I've been using method 1-pps which is 10% rosemary oil and 2% peppermint oil which is much less harsh on the plants but kills bugs on contact. kind of fun to see them all die in a fine mist and the spray smells much nicer than neem (gross).

#1567014 Megacrop, J. R. Peter's, and other dry nutes

Posted by thefish on 10 July 2018 - 03:25 PM

Dude it rocks! I've tried the Jack's 3-2-1 before trying megacrop and was so happy about the results I had ordered the stuff I needed to make my own calmag supplement (Cal nit, mag nit, iron edta) since the Jack's Is lacking in that area and I'm growing in coco for all my containers, and stumbled upon canna dudes growing with megacrop and looked into it and they're a rocking newer company that is actually concerned with putting out a solid one part product for all growers. I even talked with the main guy Christian online and he said they're new packaging is actually going to include peppers and tomatoes on it as previously they've been geared toward marketing to the canna growers. Great stuff though, ph'es awesome every time no matter the water, mixes well, foliar great, and ppm/ec always in a nice range..
Concentrated too! 3/4 tsp is about what 4g works, out to and runs 550ppm with my well water which is 80ppm so about 420ppm of nutes for 3/4tsp, assuming a full tsp is around 450 which is perfect for peppers and if you look at Berger or Haifa the NPK ratio nearly matches the nutrient uptake curves driven from their leaf analyses... I'll take pics of my plants tomorrow. Plus it includes kelp, tons of b vitamins, and all the chelated nutrients are chelated with amino acids instead of hard chemicals like EDTA and DTPA.

Plus now I don't have to worry about the potassium silicate from GH messing with my ph(strong base)

Sent from my XT1565 using Tapatalk


I've been using dynagro-foliage pro , protekt, kelp extract and compost tea in coco with great results but I dont like paying for water. My main reservation is that I don't like to constantly dose kelp. I have a great kelp extract that works best dosed every 3-4 weeks. probably should worry too much since it would be surprising for the plant hormones to in kelp to remain stable in a dried state and its just being used as an organic carbon source + micronutrients.

#1566778 Megacrop, J. R. Peter's, and other dry nutes

Posted by thefish on 09 July 2018 - 10:13 PM

how has it been working? I've been thinking of switching to Jacks 3-2-1 or this since I saw it advertised on instagram. 

#1566570 Mycorrhizal fungi in container growing

Posted by thefish on 09 July 2018 - 01:22 AM

They may or may not help. Really not a lot of information about the viability of the "propagules" from my research. For a spore to germinate it needs fresh growing root tissue and even better the plant must be colonized from a seedling onward. There are a few commercial mycorrhizae products out there but those are not the ones sold on amazon or "organic" websites. These commercial products are produced by legitimate biotech outfits but unfortunately they are sold on a scale suitable only for agriculture and not affordable or feasible for the hobby grower. 

As far as the scientific literature goes with research on mycorrhizae- they typically get mycorrhizae by growing a mono-culture of a suitable host plant that they can easily produce and then they harvest the mycelia from the roots to inoculate other plants. Sterile plants are inoculated with this mycelia slurry and if the conditions are right they will colonize the seedlings. This gives you both mycelia and spores. As far as I know all commerical products like Mykos, Greatwhite or some of the granular stuff is just spores and dead mycelia. The commercial biotech produce viable mycelia and spore inoculations that inoculate your plants to ensure highest probability of colonization. Really the only way to tell if this stuff works is to examine the roots after some time and physically look for fungal structures and evidence of mycelium colonization.


 Mykos and some of the plain jane granular mycorrhizae are just spores so at least you know what you are inoculating your plants with. Some people report good results with these products but I have not personally seen any evidence that any of the plants I have used this product on have been colonized. If you do chose to buy these products I would inoculate your plants as early on in their life cycle as possible and ensure that healthy fresh root tips are in contact with whatever mycorrhizae product you try. Then you essentially have to pray that whatever viable spores interact with growing root tips and the hormones, exudates and plant signaling molecules that facilitate this interaction to occur during that period of viability. 



I second the use of compost tea and there is a wealth of knowledge out there on how to make a suitable compost tea. If you dont want to make it yourself and have some $$ laying around I would highly reccomend Inocucor Garden solution as its a commercially produced consortium of microbes that have proven in test after test yeild increases, fertilizer input decreases and increased ability to withstand disease. You may have to dial in your compost tea to achieve something that is equivalent to this product and your tea may not be the same batch to batch. I use inocucor because I don't have the space or time to easily produce home-made compost tea to the quality I desire. You can even use this product as a "starter" to produce a more uniform tea every time and to prevent the production of unwanted microbes. 


If you want to make a compost tea yourself that has mycorrhizae you can read this awesome manual:


http://ecologiesurle...compost tea.pdf






#1563265 looking to switch to a better fertilizer

Posted by thefish on 26 June 2018 - 11:43 PM


You mean like the humic and fulvic acids that are present in compost? ;)


It's a lot of worry for nothing.  Until somebody can quantify the amount, and show that it's a threat, I am very confident that it's not.  So confident, in fact, that I regularly make teas with tap water.  The idea that you can't make good teas from tap water is really just a lot of hooey from the militant organic crowd.

The link that I posted stated that chlorine and chloramine were only shown to kill ANY amount of bacteria in the first 1/2" of soil  After that, the bacteria were thriving. And, as was duly noted, the reproduction rate of microbes/bacteria is so explosive, that the effect almost completely negated any die-off.


It should also be noted that "organic acids" can be the by-product of any bacteria die-off.  So, even in a soilless media or in tea, the chlorine/chloramine is going to be eliminated/metabolised.


I don't think anything in my post disagrees with what you said. I mentioned that I wouldn't make teas or use chlorinated water in soil-less media where you might have a less resilient rhisozphere and you are dismissing these suggestions broadly by applying a single "experiment".  I spend a significant amount of time at my job working as a microbiologist and I also have worked on isolating bacterial samples from environmental samples so I have a little background that might help you understand where I'm coming from. What I'm saying has nothing to do with being militantly pro-organic and has everything to do with good scientific practice in certain instances. Making a compost tea with chloramine and chlorine is bad practice.


You seem to give good advice on the forum in general but you're kind-of talking out of your ass when it comes to your understanding of bacteria and microbes here. Chlorine and chloramines will have differential effects from microbe to microbe based on concentration in the water and the physical biology of the organisms. Now here is where my background in this area comes in: a principle element in the isolation of microbes involves using chemicals that have differential effects on bacteria to make it easier to isolate from a species rich sample. Just like I use antibiotics and bacteriostatic compounds to alter the growth of the off target bacteria I don't want to isolate in the lab chlorine and chloramine will have a variable effect on all organisms in the tea that ranges from doing nothing to killing an organism.


Here is a example of how addition of bacterial inhibiting substances would play out in a compost tea: Two solutions of molasses one made with chlorinated tap water and one with dechlorinated are inoculated Yeast A, Bacteria B, Bacteria C and Fungi D.


Condition A (chlorine remains in tap water prior to inoculation):

Yeast A is unaffected by chlorine and begins to reach logarithmic growth after its initial adaptation period to the molasses.

Bacteria B is somewhat inhibited by the chlorine and takes 2 hours longer than typical to reach logarithmic growth.

Bacteria C isn't inhibted at all and takes a normal amount of time to adapt to the sugar source and grow logarithmically.

Fungi D is physically damaged by the chlorine and while it wasn't going to grow on the molasses it has been rendered unable to colonize the rhizosphere.


Compost Tea A when ready contains a population breakdown of 60% of yeast A because it was allowed to dominate the sugar for longest, 30% Bacteria C because it was the next fastest to adapt to the food source, 10% Bacteria B because by the time it kicked into gear the sugar source was waning and also has an inactivated FungI D.


Condition B (chlorine is removed)

Yeast A is unaffected and begins to reach logarithmic growth after its initial adaptation period.

Bacteria B takes 2 hours adapt to the molasses and reach logarithmic growth 

Bacteria C takes 4 hours to adapt to the molasses and reach logarithmic growth

Fungi D does not grow yet remains stable in the tea.


Compost Tea B when ready contains a population break down of 40% Yeast A, 40% Bacteria B since it was the next fastest to adapt, 20% Bacteria C since by the time it had adapted to the molasses Yeast and and Bacteria B had eaten most of the sugar. The fungi is viable and able to colonize the rhizosphere.


Levels of cholorine and chloramines vary ALOT within (water treatment may have to increase chlorine in the water if contaminants are detected or depending on the time of year) and between water sources as well which makes your broad statement even more ridiculous. I hope the above example is a clear way of explaining why its not good scientific practice to use chlorinated water for teas. So anyone reading this please don't listen to Solid7s advice on making compost tea with chlorinated/chloraminated water.

#1560806 Strange(?) behaviour of transplants

Posted by thefish on 17 June 2018 - 09:01 PM

did you harden off the seedlings? It sounds like you just shocked them from going from a dimly lit area to bright full sun with no adaptation.

#1558670 Droopy leaves, thin plants

Posted by thefish on 08 June 2018 - 04:06 PM

Thanks, SH.  Hopefully they dry out soon; seems to be taking forever, even without rain, with the high humidity here.  Perhaps I'll move my younger guys and seedlings under cover too, even if that restricts sunlight, so they don't fall into the same trap.  Not ideal weather when it's forcast to rain all day every day for a week or two...


perhaps since you get so much rain in Florida it would benefit you to move to a more airy mix like the 5-1-1 gardenweb mix that way you can eliminate root drowning. the extra watering an airy mix requires isn't always suitable with people's conditions or with the amount of time they want to spend but it should be no biggie for you since you're getting tropical rains anyways. 

#1558632 Miracle Gro or Dyna Gro 7-9-5?

Posted by thefish on 08 June 2018 - 12:57 PM

Me too, mine didn't have boron, chlorine, and the other couple things he showed as well? My label looks same as yours. I just got it from switching after runnin out of gh 3part.

Sent from my XT1565 using Tapatalk


I suspect the elements are in the solution but they no longer list them. Many of the chemicals are added in as chloride or sulfate salts (sources of sulfur and chloride) and the product may be buffered by boric acid/borate which would supply boron. Since they have kept their product a trade secret for so long this may be further protection from reverse engineering since 1 part nutrients are so hard to keep shelf stable. Going to email them to see what is up. 

#1553986 Beneficial microbes and fungi solutions

Posted by thefish on 18 May 2018 - 05:02 PM



this product is better than all the grow shop stuff you can buy and you can amplify it if you want. plus they actually have scientific study to back up their claims (weird I know).


I can personally attest to this product in eliminating bacterial and fungal disease in my garden.


The secret is that you can use the product as a seed to passage more compost tea:



5% un-sulfured molasses

5-10% inocucor 

1% kelp extract (my modification)


the recipe is in the video. you can use beer brewing equipment to do an anaerobic fermentation down to pH 3.5 and then its ready to be applied.


the one thing that this guy doesn't add is kelp extract which after talking with the distributor is the carbon source for the microbes that the company actually uses.


Buy this:




and add it 1:10 to your fermentation vessel along with unsulfured molasses from the grocery store according to the vid in the recipe and some good quality water and you basically have unlimited microbes. you can amplify the concentrate 10-20 times and then the working concentration is somewhere between 1:80 (label) and 1:40 that means that if you buy 1L you have enough product to make hundreds of gallons innoculant. the guy in the video recommends adding a bit of regular innocucor to your final blend.


the avocado farmer in the video reduced fertilizer use by 30% and increased yield by 20%. 


The nice thing about using the commercial product is that you know exactly what you're getting from your tea as long as you keep your conditions consistent. You dont have that control when you make your own tea. Compost tea making is complicated and if you dont understand it well you're probably making a tea that is only giving you marginal benefits or even worse amplifying pathogens.


most traditional teas are aerobic because of the chance of amplifying pathogens. using this product as I have described will produce something that is SAFE. i do not recommend following traditional tea brewing methods and doing anaerobic fermentation- there isnt a lot known about it and what is known about it seems to suggest that you can create a breeding ground for nasty bacteria.



edits: some of the numbers were off the top of my head at work- edited to add recipe and other info



#1553849 Miracle Gro or Dyna Gro 7-9-5?

Posted by thefish on 17 May 2018 - 11:51 PM


It's absolutely for container plants. 


My humble advice on that matter, though...  Cut the dose down to 1/3 strength, and apply it exactly twice as often, for container plants.  

I don't know what the actual dosage is.  Let's assume that it's 1 Tbsp/gal for in-ground plants, and then let's assume that it's applied once every 6 weeks.  By my previous advice, I'd dose it at 1 tsp (1/3 of a Tbsp) per gallon, and I'd water it in every 2 weeks.


1/2 or 1/3 tsp 2x or 3x a week is what i do for my containers on the balcony all summer long. plants love it

#1553382 High drainage grow mix

Posted by thefish on 15 May 2018 - 09:53 PM

A local composting place has a peat free mix. They call it SLC Grower's Mix in bags or Peat Free Mix if bought in bulk. They claim several local greenhouses and nurseries use it. Well, at $6 for a 2 cubic feet bag i had to grab a couple. If nothing else it will be a good soil amendment for the ground plot.



40% aged pine fines

40% compost

20% rice hulls

a little fertilizer and pH buffer (starter charge they call it)


I filled a 7gal fabric pot with it. Added about 2cups of worm castings and a small handful of Alaska 4-6-6 fish and kelp pellets. Another smaller hard pot i used about the same mix but it also has a transplanted Vietnamese coriander with a good sized "ball" of Pro-Mx Ultimate still attached to the roots. I watered the snot out of it and it sure does drain fast. I filled the small hard pot until the saucer was full of water. That plant loves to stay wet.


I haven't moved a plant into the fabric pot yet. I want to see how damp it remains by around 3pm today...Roughly 24hrs since i filled it. I have a bale of Pro-Mix all purpose just in case. Im pretty certain a saucer will be a must for this mix once the temps climb. Its supposed to be around 90F today so i guess i will get a good idea.




this looks like a take on the famous gardenweb 5-1-1 mix. this mix will allow your plant to dry out faster and reduce perched water at the expense of having to water more often. if you can keep up and fertigate regularly but at a lower concentration you can achieve faster and better growth than a mix that takes longer to dry out and has more perched water.