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Banana Puree for my orchids

This is a discussion on Banana Puree for my orchids within the General Orchid Culture forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; Ok, my daughter decided she had to have bananas today. So, I now have banana ...

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  1. #1
    Daethen is offline Senior Member
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    Question Banana Puree for my orchids

    Ok, my daughter decided she had to have bananas today. So, I now have banana peels. I wanted to try feeding my babies some organic yummies.




    Can someone please tell me a formula or point me to an existing thread that has it. Please and thank you.


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    Good question...I have heard of planting banana peels under plants, but not of making them into orchid food. I'll have to watch this thread...

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    I did some searching, I have not tried any of these.

    •Orchids do best when they are fed the proper balance of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, given in a water-soluble formula. According to the some one (Edited), the belief that orchids need high-nitrogen fertilizers has been disproved by recent studies, and a 7-9-5 NPK fertilizer--the numbers indicate the ratio of nitrogen to phosphorus to potassium--is optimal. Because most orchids in nature grow above the ground and are fed and watered by rain runoff, they get their nutrients in a very diluted form. This is the reason for the "Weakly, weekly" rule of thumb for fertilizing orchids--for best results, you should give your orchids well-diluted feedings every seven days.

    •If you are unsure about the welcome your orchids will give to your homemade concoction, there are ways of hedging your bets. Use a cheap or less-prized orchid as a guinea pig. Or, for extra insurance, you can dilute some store-bought fertilizer with water and add that to your mixture. Watch for over-fertilizing, whether with homemade or commercial fertilizers. Signs include whitish crusts on the potting media--a sign of salt buildup--blackened roots, and leaves dying at the tips.
    Tea
    •Used tea bags, which are high in nitrogen, are especially good for orchids. Compared to commercial fertilizers, tea bags contain organic matter that is nontoxic and does not smell bad. To use the tea bag, open it and empty the contents into the orchid pot. Apply tea once monthly in the spring and summer months.

    Orchids love calcium and potassium, and never seem to get enough. Saving eggshells and using them for orchid fertilizer is the cheapest and most efficient way to get needed calcium to your orchids. Crush the shells into pieces as small as possible or better, use a mortar and petal to grind them into a powder. Sprinkle it on the bark in the planter so as not to be washed away from excessive watering.

    To give the orchids the potassium that they need, use a teaspoon of molasses diluted in water used during the normal watering routine. Using molasses rather than banana peels will prevent rotting material, while maintaining all of the nutrients.

    Boil Your Own Fertilizer
    Another way to get similar results is to use potatoes instead. The potatoes need to be graded into fine pieces without discarding the skins and boiled for several minutes. Once cooled, it can be stored in canning jars and later be added to the bark in the pot. For more potassium and to avoid the possible decomposition of banana peels, cut fresh bananas and add to the potato mixture while being boiled.

    Another addition that can be used with the potato and banana mixture is agar. Agar is a plant-based material commonly used in science labs. It is derived from the red algae plant found in the ocean and is completely edible. While it is normally used in the lab or as a protein substitute gelatin, the substance adds additional nutrients to the mixture, causing it not only to bind better but to contribute additional sugars to the fertilizer.


    I Hope This Helps,Rich
    Last edited by rich63; September 21st, 2010 at 12:32 AM. Reason: editing contant

  4. #4
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    thanks rich, very informative.
    i also wonder if used brewed coffee works as well, aside from tea.
    soon we can open another thread,
    "how to cook for orchids!"

    damn, we are crazy...lol

  5. #5
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    One well documented recipe used by commercial orchid growers from Thailand is to soak 4-5 bananna peels in 1 to 2 litres of cow/pig/human urine for about 3-4 days, after that discard the peels and dilute the both 1:20 to 1:50 depending on the orchids and spray as a foliar feed or to the roots. This concoction contains a mix of beneficial enzymes, vitamins, amino acids etc from the urine + the banana peels fortify it with potassium and phosphorus which the urine contains less in content as compared to Nitrogen. I have personally tried using just the cow urine as further processing is quite lengthy (and not to forget disgusting hehe) and it works well, plants become greener within 3 to 4 weeks after twice weekly applications. I had to discontinue the use because of the problems caused in obtaining cow urine and I did not want to spray human urine on the orchids.
    Last edited by Halloamey; September 21st, 2010 at 09:48 AM.

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    Daethen is offline Senior Member
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    Thanks for that info, Rich. I will see if I can add that to the routine. I also wonder if coffee grounds would do anything to help as I am a coffee drinker and rarely drink tea.

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    stefpix is offline Senior Member
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    Why it would be ok to spray cow urine on the orchids but not human?

    I wonder if it would be good to boil it or add some bleach to kill bacterias that are in it...
    anyway not going to spray urine on mine!

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    Daethen is offline Senior Member
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    I think I will skip the urine treatment as I keep my orchids in the house.

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    Jonada, That coffee can come in handy! If your plants have been taking a summer vacation outside, before you bring them in water with cold coffee. I mean all your houseplants as well as your orchids. The coffee does in slugs that will have been hiding. You don't need to bring in those hitchhickers!

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    Daethen is offline Senior Member
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    Good to know, Cindi, thanks.

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