How Fast?

Discussion in 'THE CROTON SOCIETY' started by Moose, Dec 13, 2011.

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  1. Moose

    Moose Esteemed Member

    Messages:
    7,947
    Location:
    Coral Gables, FL Zone 10b
    The Moose was fortunate enough to acquire a rooted cutting of Monarch earlier this year. Reportedly a slow grower. Question: Once a Monarch establishes a nice root sytem and makes it into the ground, how long before does it take to attain a fooot of growth? Just curious about others' experiences with this cultivar. Any suggestions about how I could "push" Monarch? :confused:
     
  2. Crazy for Crotons

    Crazy for Crotons Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,050
    Location:
    south Tampa, Bokeelia
    Ron,

    Liquid Peter's Special (is it still available?) or Miracle Grow will help push the slow Monarch. Mine is about 2 feet tall and has not set any speed records in the 4 or so years it has grown here. To its credit, it did not defoliate 2 years ago (26F) so it is a hardier cultivar in my experience.

    Ray
     
  3. Crotonologist

    Crotonologist Active Member

    Messages:
    761
    Location:
    southern Louisiana USDA 9a
    The only thing I can think of besides fertilizer would be to acidify your water with some vinegar....
    Most tap water is in the 7-8 pH range, and it is the pH of the solution around a plants roots that is critical to nutrient uptake more so than the pH of the soil, and when you use tap water with a high pH it can affect a plants growth.
    The effect is quite dramatic in cacti between using tap water versus tap water + vinegar, and most cacti are not known for being acid loving plants, so I'm curious as to how crotons might respond...
    I intend to find out soon as I'll be setting up an injector for adding vinegar to my hose water for crotons...
    http://ralph.cs.cf.ac.uk/cacti/Cactus and Alkalinity.pdf
     
  4. Moose

    Moose Esteemed Member

    Messages:
    7,947
    Location:
    Coral Gables, FL Zone 10b
    At what ratio Peyton?

    What is the Ph of vinegar?

    What would be the resulting Ph when combined with the water?

    Just curious if it would be cost effective? :confused:
     
  5. Crazy for Crotons

    Crazy for Crotons Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,050
    Location:
    south Tampa, Bokeelia
    Peyton, can this be done to palms as well?
     
  6. Jeff Searle

    Jeff Searle Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,753
    Location:
    South Florida, USA
    Ron,

    Nice!!! You now have one of the "Holy Grails" in my opinion. This croton will give you years of enjoyment watching it grow, producing some of the biggest leaves anywhere.
     
  7. Moose

    Moose Esteemed Member

    Messages:
    7,947
    Location:
    Coral Gables, FL Zone 10b
    I thought my leaves would be larger than this by now. Photo taken 01/01/2012 at sunrise. Really trying to push this one ... :(
     

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  8. Crotonologist

    Crotonologist Active Member

    Messages:
    761
    Location:
    southern Louisiana USDA 9a
    Moose, I'll have to look up the vinegar dosage, but I think it's low, something like one teaspoon of vinegar per gallon of water, depending on the pH of your water.
    Typical commercial white vinegar is 5 - 10% acetic acid and has a pH around 3 give or take a few tenths of a point...
    Here's a few quick google search results:
    http://www.centralarizonacactus.org/plantinfo/plants/An Acid Trip For Your Plants.pdf
    http://ralph.cs.cf.ac.uk/cacti/Cactus and Alkalinity.pdf
    And yes I believe it is cost effective for treating high pH tap water, though on large scales a more concentrated acid would be a lot cheaper, but more dangerous...

    Ray, I believe this works on any acid-loving plants, but I really don't know much about palms, and again, it all depends on what pH water you are using.

    Moose, that Monarch is looking good, but probably still a bit young for pushing some really large leaves...
     
  9. Jeff Searle

    Jeff Searle Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,753
    Location:
    South Florida, USA
    Ron,

    Don't expect much in growth now, especially larger leaves. I did get lots of good growth right up through November on mine. But just wait until next spring/summer. Wheee doggies!!!!



    PS....a few days ago, I got a nice surprise on a grouping of these plants. I found a spike that had got pollinated and there was approx. 25-30 seeds on the spike. So, I bagged them. I have no idea what the male donor was, but I figured with the mommy plant being a Monarch, there's real good possibilities of some nice seedlings!
     

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