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Ghost Issue, Need Help Please.

Ghost in ground 2 months (left row) are stunted and yellow, ghost in pots went from healthy to yellow this week. Used 5-1-1 on transplant followed by cal-mag and not overwatered.
 
 
 
 
 

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solid7 said:
Have you had your soil tested?
 
I have not, all other pepper plants are doing well. It must be either they need more water than others and/or different nutrients. I am going to mix some black kow and crab meal to see if that helps. I would rather not guess and am hopeful someone can share their "ghost" specific experience so I get it right. 
 
solid7 said:
Have you had your soil tested?
 
That was my first idea as well. I would recommend you sending soil samples for analysis if you're growing peppers commercially. It helps to rationalise the type of nutrients you want to amend to your plants (including avoiding unnecessary costs).
 
I have 10 year old seasoned compost...that's all I know to do.  We eat lots of eggs, and now live in Ohio.  My ghosties in TX were 6ft tall...these are 2ft tall, and cranking out pods.  I'd say get your soil tested, and if you don't already, compost.
 
Magno Farms said:
 
I have not, all other pepper plants are doing well. It must be either they need more water than others and/or different nutrients. I am going to mix some black kow and crab meal to see if that helps. I would rather not guess and am hopeful someone can share their "ghost" specific experience so I get it right. 
 
That's quite a logical contradiction.  On one hand, you haven't had your soil tested, but are willing to just throw a bunch of things at the plants.  On the other hand, you "would rather not guess".  So, in this regards, you're not making a whole lot of sense.  Ghost peppers are not some magical species that have super specific requirements. 
.
Arbitrarily adding things (especially things like CalMag) isn't really a successful strategy.  Adding crab meal on top of Cal Mag - what's the purpose of that?  If you had a soil test in hand, you'd most likely see that you didn't really need to add calcium at all (as is common in most soils) At the point that you are tilling ground, it especially behooves you to know your soil composition.  
.
Your best bet is to check with a local ag extension office, and figure out if they have an existing profile of soils in your area, or if they recommended a targeted test for your particular soil.  I'm willing to bet that they'd have you greened out in a matter of days.
 
LunchBox said:
I have 10 year old seasoned compost...that's all I know to do.  We eat lots of eggs, and now live in Ohio.  My ghosties in TX were 6ft tall...these are 2ft tall, and cranking out pods.  I'd say get your soil tested, and if you don't already, compost.
 
Yep.  That's right.  To this date, the best gardens I ever grew weren't fertilized.  They were planted in ground, with nothing but green waste from the yard, piled as high as I could stack it at the end of every season.  DWB has a great thread that shows the benefits of keeping it natural.
 
solid7 said:
 
That's quite a logical contradiction.  On one hand, you haven't had your soil tested, but are willing to just throw a bunch of things at the plants.  On the other hand, you "would rather not guess".  So, in this regards, you're not making a whole lot of sense.  Ghost peppers are not some magical species that have super specific requirements. 
.
Arbitrarily adding things (especially things like CalMag) isn't really a successful strategy.  Adding crab meal on top of Cal Mag - what's the purpose of that?  If you had a soil test in hand, you'd most likely see that you didn't really need to add calcium at all (as is common in most soils) At the point that you are tilling ground, it especially behooves you to know your soil composition.  
.
Your best bet is to check with a local ag extension office, and figure out if they have an existing profile of soils in your area, or if they recommended a targeted test for your particular soil.  I'm willing to bet that they'd have you greened out in a matter of days.
Good advice. While you are awaiting the test results,foliar spraying with chelated minor elements wouldn't hurt (as long as the plants aren't heat stressed), and may help nurse them along until you figure out what's going on with the soil.

Sent from my Pixel 3a using Tapatalk
 
solid7 said:
Have you had your soil tested?
Seems like a logical step,,,yes..
 
Magno Farms said:
 
I have not, all other pepper plants are doing well. It must be either they need more water than others and/or different nutrients. I am going to mix some black kow and crab meal to see if that helps. I would rather not guess and am hopeful someone can share their "ghost" specific experience so I get it right. 
  "going to mix some black kow and crab meal to see if that helps"  is that not a guess.
 
You are right to come here and ask, just try and consider the opinions here from some very experienced knowledgeable pepper growers...even if they aren't what you want to hear.
 
 
 
Looking at your below pic seems the far left row is the worst stunted row. Then it gets better as you move to the center and right row.
Seems something is different the farther left you go. Any idea what you did different from the left row to the right row...? Same soil..? same water, same light, same spray, fert,,? Any pests..? Something is obviously different, you just need to figure out what that is..
 
Maybe a soil test from a sample on the right row, and another soil sample from the far left row might shed some light on the difference...
 
 
 
 
post-16136-0-68275200-1600537103_thumb.jpg

 
 
How does your irrigation system work, does the left and right rows get identical pressure/volume..?
In your below pic, the plant on far left front looks like a lack of water wilt,,?
 
jmo
 
post-16136-0-72634700-1600537137_thumb.jpg
 
I appreciate all the advice and apologize for the contradicting mentions, just desperate to keep them alive until I get it figured out. Soil is the same across the rows, AG was not processing soil samples due to Covid-19 when I planted, I will see if they are testing yet.
 
Once I figure this out and have to add something, I assume just pouring it in the holes will suffice or do I need to rip up all the black plastic mulch for better saturation?
 
Magno Farms said:
Once I figure this out and have to add something, I assume just pouring it in the holes will suffice or do I need to rip up all the black plastic mulch for better saturation?
 
It's really difficult to know or say, until such time that you actually know what/if you need to apply something.  That can depend on a lot of factors, but in general, I wouldn't guess that there's going to be any "ripping" required.
 
Perhaps even a simple soil PH test would be good idea. I just had a bag of Black Kow test between 4 and 5 ph. My plants all looked very similar to yours (plants potted outside and ones I was raising indoors (herbs, lettuce, peppers) Didn't discover that until after everything died. I had kept most of everything alive for a month after having repotted everything with this bag in addition. It didn't matter if it was 1 day after watering or in one case 2 weeks of no watering on one plant, everything looked overwatered. My reaper and Ghost lasted the longest but by the end all of their roots had burnt back to nothing. I didn't think to test before because the first 2 bags I had were good but this last one was purchased at a different time. Everything else added to the soil likely only just made everything even more acidic. I was thinking it's possible herbicides were on that bag however my girlfriend has two bromeliads that are doing amazing and one just put out a pup and they're in a similar mix of potting soil, just large mulch mixed in. Those things love acidic soil and I'm pretty sure if it was herbicides they'd be dead and without a pup popping up in the last few days.

 
 
Magno Farms said:
I appreciate all the advice and apologize for the contradicting mentions, just desperate to keep them alive until I get it figured out. Soil is the same across the rows, AG was not processing soil samples due to Covid-19 when I planted, I will see if they are testing yet.
 
Once I figure this out and have to add something, I assume just pouring it in the holes will suffice or do I need to rip up all the black plastic mulch for better saturation?
 
I never used plastic mulch as you do, but I wouldn't rip it up. Most roots are immediately below the stem anyway.
 
Two more questions:
  • Is the land yours or do you rent? Do you know what previous owner(s) grew on/did with the land?
  • What plants are growing at the left? There are plants that release compounds which inhibit the growth of neighbouring plants.
 
ahayastani said:
How does your irrigation system work, does the left and right rows get identical pressure/volume..?
 

Same GPH on all heads, give or take. I may have underestimated recent rains and should have checked every couple days like normal.
 
ahayastani said:
 
Two more questions:
  • Is the land yours or do you rent? Do you know what previous owner(s) grew on/did with the land?
  • What plants are growing at the left? There are plants that release compounds which inhibit the growth of neighbouring plants.
 
 
We own the land, grass and weeds prior to planting. Timeline here if you are interested in the process. https://www.facebook.com/magnofarms/ 
 
The rows are 49 plants, all ghost on the left, with the typical miss labeled plant in between. Trinidad Scorpion and Cayenne in the middle row flowering and fruiting.
 
Rows are at a slope West to East for drainage. The ends may be getting too much sun in the morning. I am going to test shade cloth covering the East opening.
 
Pics below are today after 2 days of rain from tropical storm Beta. First pic is on the West End of rows.
 

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Demented said:
Perhaps even a simple soil PH test would be good idea. I just had a bag of Black Kow test between 4 and 5 ph. My plants all looked very similar to yours (plants potted outside and ones I was raising indoors (herbs, lettuce, peppers) Didn't discover that until after everything died. I had kept most of everything alive for a month after having repotted everything with this bag in addition. It didn't matter if it was 1 day after watering or in one case 2 weeks of no watering on one plant, everything looked overwatered. My reaper and Ghost lasted the longest but by the end all of their roots had burnt back to nothing. I didn't think to test before because the first 2 bags I had were good but this last one was purchased at a different time. Everything else added to the soil likely only just made everything even more acidic. I was thinking it's possible herbicides were on that bag however my girlfriend has two bromeliads that are doing amazing and one just put out a pup and they're in a similar mix of potting soil, just large mulch mixed in. Those things love acidic soil and I'm pretty sure if it was herbicides they'd be dead and without a pup popping up in the last few days.

 
 

I noticed pine trees in the back (facebook) and pine needles between the plants. I believed that pines acidify the soil, but a google search tells me this is a garden myth. What is not a myth, however, is that they grow best in acidic soil. I'm just thinking aloud here... It is obvious you have spent a lot of time and resources in your project, and I understand you don't want to loose it.
 
ahayastani said:
 

I noticed pine trees in the back (facebook) and pine needles between the plants. I believed that pines acidify the soil, but a google search tells me this is a garden myth. What is not a myth, however, is that they grow best in acidic soil. I'm just thinking aloud here... It is obvious you have spent a lot of time and resources in your project, and I understand you don't want to loose it.
 
Never considered it. Once the rain stops I will clear them out.
 
Magno Farms said:
 
Never considered it. Once the rain stops I will clear them out.
 
Well, I think the best would be to follow Demented's advice and do a pH test of the soil. Garden centers sell DIY soil tests that include pH and that may help you to orientate and focus the issue.
 

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I carefully mixed in peat moss,  aluminum sulfate and sulfur in an attempt to lower the pH from 8-9 down to 6-7 but it isn't happening. Ordered some agricultural lime to see if that works. I then added 12-0-0 feather meal and that did it.  Everything is getting better and some are even flowering.
 

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