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Old 07-06-2019, 07:57 PM #21
moose eater
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Thanks h.h. Still have 'Miles of Aisles' here, Joni & Tom Scott, on Lp. A fine, fine piece of music.

I've liked bat shit for a long time now (over 25 years; back when what I got was more reliable/authentic). It was purported to typically be closer to ~neutral ph, relatively reasonably fast release in contrast to some organic amendments, made a nice tea, good mixer with the dirt, etc.

Then much of it changed in quality/content. Year after year of hundreds of thousands of supposedly conscientious hippies across America and Europe indirectly paying some 2nd or 3rd world folks to enter caves on peasants' wages, to dig out the findings there.

Then reports of shortages of decent bat poo, causing a moment or 2 of contemplation.. How does the world run low on decent, accessible bat shit?

Used to wonder in my naiveté' how they get bats to shit different nutrient properties; different feeds? Were they feeding wild bats different food, or were they caged bats, living in servitude to produce excrement?

Then I found that the difference in N versus P-oriented bat poo had more to do with age of the shit, like anything else we toss in our compost, shedding what it reveals easiest first, and transitioning with age. That was why my better ^P bat shit back then looked like, and felt like, crumbled sand stone, and the ^N bat shit typically had way more microbes in it, back in the day, causing ^N veg teas to froth like they were going to turn into the swamp monster eventually.

Now I just try to find bat guano that's -actually- bat guano, with relatively respectable numbers, and the nutrient array I'm needing!! ;^>)
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Old 07-08-2019, 10:37 AM #22
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OK, I surrender to Rico's and Burn1's approach. I'll let the roots and the mix have a private discussion, which I'll try to ignore for a bit.

I just upped the garden lime I'd referenced to 22.5 TBSP (a local product by the way, which I'm also, once again, now a bit skeptical of...), decreased the dolomite back down to slightly less than 5 TBS, and initially discontinued the Lilly Miller Super Sweet altogether.

On top of that, I decreased my acidic-testing gypsum from 3/4 cup to 2/3 cup.

Wet AND dry, I got, initially, about a 5.5+, then said "screw it!", and tossed in 3 TBSP of the Super Sweet to the mix; a relatively known, reliable commodity, despite it being older than at least one of my kids. It came out just below a 6.

Pardon me... but.. WTF!!

So, I'll be testing the local 'garden lime' product by itself, and looking for another bag of garden lime with same numbers, but from a different source, and see what gives.

In the interim, I'm simply potting plants into their larger, final, Classic 2000's, and trying not to get any more warped by this whole misadventure than I already am.

Well-reviewed guano is on the way & coming soon, though.

------------------------

Commander Cody's past experiences with remotely similar circumstances.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oqu0EVxbwXw
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Old 07-08-2019, 12:04 PM #23
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Tested the garden lime; it's 8+. Color me befuddled.

Some place in this mix is one acidic anchor of an amendment, slow to react to alkalinity or neutralizing agents.. Damned if I know what it is..
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Old 07-11-2019, 08:28 PM #24
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Could try making/buying bio char.... it tends to bring ph up as well as adding to tilth and CEC.... rock dust is also decent enough option if it’s micronized. I also use Calcium carbonate every couple cycles or so. My approach has been to let soil come out at 7 or higher ph and then water with ph 6.7 if it’s closer to 7 or maybe 6.5 if it’s higher. Between cover crops and worms cycling and mixing and the watering it usually settles down after a couple weeks.

I used to add bone meal every cycle but my oldest box is now a bit hot so I’m really concentrating on letting biology and time set my soil up in the right range and then relying on CEC and constant inputs of canna waste to give enough food.. I do still put thin layers of rock dust (I can harvest locally ) on top of mulch every two or three cycles at least.

Last time I bothered checking soil ph was 7.2 in the older box... I pushed the rock dust and Calcium carbonate and added a little extra B last run to try and boost Calcium cycle... it was fine for plants that liked eating but fried a GT a little... newer box that I’ve been more careful with was 6.8...
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Old 07-11-2019, 11:41 PM #25
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Thanks YK.

I've stepped back on the garden lime to 20 TBSP (1-1/4 cup) currently, 1 TBSP Super Sweet, and just under 5 TBSP of my older more reliable dolomite, of which I have a small stash that had gotten damp, so I'm having to pulverize it a bit to use it, but it's working fine..

I have a bit of fine-grade rock dust, and there's 'some' in the bokashi bran I'm using in reduced amounts, due to the salts they put in it.

The (Greenhouse) Super Lemon Haze has been in the current mix (mostly, with slightly less lime) for the longest, and looking -quite- happy. But they're easy keepers. Have always liked that; potent plant with moderate production capacity, and easy to clone as well as to grow.

I got sluggish, thus there was a bit of a break between batches, so some of the SLH, as well as the (SSB) California Indica, have had roots in the new mix for different lengths of time.

The Ghost Train Haze #1 is the only one still in the older less-healthy mix, and the only one that was/is showing light fading at the top, newer leaves/branches. The others didn't get that way in the same mix, for almost as long a time.

Moms all seem relatively content, but need to get them into the newer mix, as well, with slight adjustments to N & P; raising N a bit for their veg state, while slightly lowering P; maybe lowering K just a bit as well a touch..

The new replacement ^P bat guano arrived, from a reputable source, and has the consistency/texture of the ^P guano I used to get, ~18-23 years ago. Claims 1 point higher (14) on P than what I replaced, with, I think a value of 1 on N, as opposed to a 0. If true and honest reflection of nute contents, then all's well.

Pushing forward, as I've run out of time to screw around. Thus, late nights have been productive, while planning and prepping for other adventures.

Seems that my motivation/energy for tasks has functioned on a domino-type force for a long time. Needing to do one thing, causes a focus on all of those things I let languish preceding that task.

My wife says I get more stuff accomplished in preparation for a trip, especially over-due projects, with nothing to do with the trip in particular, than any other time.

In this case, soilless mixes, transplanting, locating misplaced tools, etc. They become the hurdle that has to be achieved in order to get ready for the trip. So I'm now in production mode.

Thanks again.
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Old 07-12-2019, 10:00 PM #26
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Hey, YK, sorry I failed to reply to a pertinent point in your post yesterday(?); I spent years chasing a neutral ph of 7, as that was what I was initially taught. Then it was 6.8-6.9.

Then last year, in discourse with another member, he referenced the benefits of my working then with a ph of about 6.7, and that was what I had been moving my water to as well, though I had taken for granted that my very hard water was still a 7 to 7.1 out of the well, untreated, and only adjusting ph (Natural Down citric acid) once any goodies were added, and using the citric acid at -VERY -slight rates.

As predicted by others, my ph in the various mixes has risen steadily since planting.

The fact that the alcohol-based reagent (LaMotte's 2221) STILL continues to not ascertain accurately the ph upon mixing the 'dirt', wet OR dry, is more than puzzling, but rather than get stuck in that rut too much more, I'll stick to the mix I've currently adjusted until the next lab analysis tells me otherwise.

Watching the ph rise, I've cut back on the local garden lime to 18 TBSP (1 cup, 2 TBSP) and am holding there, with 1 TBSP Super Sweet, and <5 TBSP of the older dolomite.

Due to lack of time to let the mixes sit this time around, I'm boosting classic 2000 pots after planting, with about 1/3 gallon (~1-1/3 qt.), with a -gallon- of H2O treated with EM-1 at 17 ml, Bio-Ag Ful-Power at about 20 ml, 1-1/4 tsp of Liquid Bone Meal (0-6-0), 2 tsp of (0-0-1) kelp extract (liquid), (as K should be pretty solid, and just using the kelp extract for other purposes), 2 drops Super Thrive 'B' vitamin, and 2 tsp. of 5-1-1 Alaska Fish Emulsion. A modest boost while other shit 'wakes up and gets busy.'

(*Soilless mix is initially gently wetted in the mixer, with another group of items, including, per gallon of H2O, 2 tsp of an ancient stash of GreenLight Root Stimulator, 2 ml Liquid Karma, 2 ml Pro-Tekt, 1-1/2 tsp Gnatrol WDG (I couldn't get the 2.5 gallon jugs of liquid up here any more), 2 drops Super Thrive B vitamin, 1/4-tsp Actinovate (or comparable effective dose of either Myco-Stop or Pre-Stop), and 15 ml of Bio-Ag Ful-Power w/ ~ 15 ml of EM-1. Wetting a total of about 17 U.S. gallons (+/-) of relatively dry aggregate with about 2.5 to 2.6 gallons of the initial 'brew' described.

I've cut WAY back on EWCs last year, after testing 3 brands, of which 2 were yuppie-priced higher end organics, with them testing seriously high in K and Mag. And I haven't had time to follow through on starting my own pyramid-stacked worm buckets under the basement steps; too much to get done, life in disarray at times, etc.

That's the status at the moment. I could post the current list of amendments/additions to the mix as it stands, which is a modified version, after the last testing, but I'll hold off until the next lab results.

Of course, Murphy's Law dictates that as soon as I have this dialed in, one or more components will change re. sourcing, business going bankrupt or closing, etc., and the neighbors a ways away will hear more loud cussing coming from my home again. ;^>)

Whipping up a small, partial (1/3) batch at the moment, to finish off transplanting the girls in the bloom boxes, and I have to say, trying to measure .1 grams of Borax (a full batch of mix calling for .3 grams of Borax) on a triple beam SUCKS re. the degree of inaccuracy. Probably have to break out an old reloading/gun-powder scale and do some grains to partial grams conversions.
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Old 07-14-2019, 01:47 AM #27
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I stopped by the garden store yesterday, to see what they had that I'd not yet gotten elsewhere, and I picked up a pouch of more random DTE myco, as well as asking for a price on the Xtreme myco. Nice folks there, and the fellow told me that he had a pouch of the Xtreme myco that had been damaged in the shipping case, and he contributed that to the cause for free; a $25 value(?).

I bought the DTE myco, which I use more liberally in the bulk mix, as opposed to the Great White, which when I remember to use it, I only sprinkle small amounts in the divet into which the roots are being placed. (for which they often want a first born child, as well as a bunch of money).

I spotted a box of DTE gypsum, so at a reasonable cost, I snagged that, intending to do a ph test on it, to contrast to the Epsoma brand I had been using since last year.

Both are granular.

Yes, redlaser, the DTE gypsum tests right at a neutral 7. However, the numbers on the back of the Epsoma brand were 1 point lower on sulfur and calcium than on the DTE (assuming all numbers between the 2 are accurate & honest; not betting MY life on that, btw).

So, there you have it; something is more acidic in the Epsoma brand gypsum than the Down To Earth brand. First person to put their finger on what, exactly, that is, wins notoriety in the trivia club.

Last year's GTH#1 run in organic soil, first time running her.


Edit: As stated in another thread, I don't know how to post pics into a thread such that the image expands, so if a larger, better view is preferred, the pics are available at my profile page, in my album. And they'll all be coming down in several days.
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