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 Post subject: Rainmix
PostPosted: Sat May 28, 2016 11:51 am 
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I'm a convert to Rainmix, I don't know if it's any worse or better than any other feed but use it because the general concensus seems to be that it's best with either RO or rainwater and I now only use rainwater.
I still have the first pot of Rainmix I bought one year ago from Akerne's at the 2015 London Show and I think I already know the answer, but does this have a shelf life ?
I noticed when I first bought it that it seemed to be quite moisture absorbent, drawing moisture into the pot from the humidity because it always formed lumps which I had to break down when I used it.
It's now gone from that dark reddish colour to a sludgy brown colour and now that I can see the bottom of the pot, it's definitely damp although I know I've never spilt any water into it.

I guess I should chuck this batch......

Steve


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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Sat May 28, 2016 6:46 pm 
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If its an inorganic fert like Chempak these are naturally hygroscopic, but this does not affect the product. I'm not familiar with Rainmix if it contains organic compounds then they would go off over time - to what degree I don't know.
Barnie.
Ps My Chempak orchid fert is 9yrs old- :shock: having written that think its time for a change(it's not the only one I use) :)

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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Sat May 28, 2016 8:34 pm 
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I had a small pot of the stuff that turned liquid in the end, no big deal its all chemicals and wont degrade, but measuring the dose got harder...



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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Sun May 29, 2016 8:41 pm 
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Thanks both Barnie & Silvershaded,

I left the lid off the pot after I posted, just to see what would happen, within a few hours it turned to a constituency like caramel.
So now I'll have to decide whether to use it, chuck it or drizzle it over me buns.

Steve


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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Mon May 30, 2016 7:33 pm 
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There are so many so called "orchid" fertilizers out there at the moment - Rain-Mix, Orchid Focus, Vitax, Chempax, Dyna-Gro all professing to be the wonder drug. I am not at all sure which is the best. I use a few different - after all, would you like the same food with every meal fer ever?
They seem generally to be much the same NPK rating except the Dyna-Gro which has very much more Phosphorous than the others, which is strange because there is a field of thought that too much P can hold back growth and flowering. The basic MSU formula (as in Rain Mix) cuts P right down, as do all the others.
I guess it is all down to personal choice. A bit like we all do our own thing with bark and compost mixes.


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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Tue May 31, 2016 10:33 am 
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orchidman wrote:
There are so many so called "orchid" fertilizers out there at the moment - Rain-Mix, Orchid Focus, Vitax, Chempax, Dyna-Gro all professing to be the wonder drug. I am not at all sure which is the best. I use a few different - after all, would you like the same food with every meal fer ever?
They seem generally to be much the same NPK rating except the Dyna-Gro which has very much more Phosphorous than the others, which is strange because there is a field of thought that too much P can hold back growth and flowering. The basic MSU formula (as in Rain Mix) cuts P right down, as do all the others.
I guess it is all down to personal choice. A bit like we all do our own thing with bark and compost mixes.

I think you're absolutely right Orchidman, I know that for a good few years my plants were lucky to be fed twice a year (although I have got into the habit of regular feeding now because that seems to be the thing to do) but I didn't have any problem with flowering them so I still have an open mind about it.
I guess we read the guidelines/instructions about feeding, potting etc then find our own level?

Steve



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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Tue May 31, 2016 12:42 pm 
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Location: Sussex, England
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My hardiness zone is: UK Zone 9a
I found the best way to keep it dry is to store it in the airing cupboard

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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Tue May 31, 2016 8:13 pm 
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Location: Firdale park, Northwich.
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My hardiness zone is: 8b
Steve, Sounds like you need to break the hairdryer out , then keep it air somewhat airtight.
Barnie.

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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Tue May 31, 2016 10:44 pm 
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I have one of the little bags with crystals, that you get in the box when you buy electronics, in my rainmix jar.
That seems to work fine to keep it dry.



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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2016 11:36 am 
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The crystals are silica gel and you can get self indicating silica gel which is blue and turns pink when it has absorbed water. This can then be put in the oven and reverts back to blue once dried


I started out with nothing and I've still got a whole lot of it left........the trouble is that it is very quickly being filled with orchids!


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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2016 3:42 pm 
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Olea/Rock Doctor: A good idea, I tried something like this. I have an elderly neighbour and I collect his medications for him. In some of those bottles are little plastic containers which I’m told are for keeping the contents dry, I guess this may contain the silica you mention? I tried one of them but it was not long after this that the powder changed colour, could be a coincidence ? The silica containers are very small, I did ask my neighbour if he would take all his medication in one go so I could have more of the silica containers but for some reason he wasn’t too keen on this idea? :?

Neil, I don’t have an airing cupboard but I will keep it in another room where the humidity isn’t so high and see how that goes, I have some on order now, other than that it’s not a major problem, I’ll just order smaller pots so I don’t have it for as long.

Barnie, I thought I hated waste and chucking things out... but 9 year old fertiliser :o
pretty soon your Chempak will be old enough to vote..... and then it will be leaving home.:cry:

Steve



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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2016 5:31 pm 
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stevek wrote:
Olea/Rock Doctor: A good idea, I tried something like this. I have an elderly neighbour and I collect his medications for him. In some of those bottles are little plastic containers which I’m told are for keeping the contents dry, I guess this may contain the silica you mention? I tried one of them but it was not long after this that the powder changed colour, could be a coincidence ? The silica containers are very small, I did ask my neighbour if he would take all his medication in one go so I could have more of the silica containers but for some reason he wasn’t too keen on this idea? :?

Neil, I don’t have an airing cupboard but I will keep it in another room where the humidity isn’t so high and see how that goes, I have some on order now, other than that it’s not a major problem, I’ll just order smaller pots so I don’t have it for as long.

Barnie, I thought I hated waste and chucking things out... but 9 year old fertiliser :o
pretty soon your Chempak will be old enough to vote..... and then it will be leaving home.:cry:

Steve

I use rainmix and have no problem with moisture keep it in its original container with lid tight store in the kitchen cupboard, 1 tub lasts me around 2 seasons and it is still good at the end


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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Thu Jun 02, 2016 7:33 pm 
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I take the big 4kg container which I dispense in small quantities into a standard domestic plastic container which is air tight. I have no problems with either the big tub or my smaller "ready to use" powder container.


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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Fri Jun 03, 2016 10:49 am 
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Thanks Stumac/Orchidman,

I possibly just had a strange/unfamiliar experience with my first batch of the stuff, I know what to expect & do in future now.

Steve


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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Fri Jun 03, 2016 6:54 pm 
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I found that the stuff certainly made my plants look a more healthy green. Very noticeably and very shortly after switching.

Now I have started adding 'sea weed extract' to the brew but I'm seriously thinking about trying some horse manure tea too.

While I'm sure that there will be many claiming 'confirmation bias' ... Well, if it works for me then ...

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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Sat Sep 30, 2017 11:59 am 
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Just doing my regular weekly feed with Rainmix.

This latest tub is now also starting to turn mushy and eventually into liquid so this, along with Mail Order Only and the fact that I can never totally disolve the powder is the reason why I'll probably not buy it again.
I used it because I water with rainwater and the 'science' behind it made sense but to be honest, I've used a few different feeds in the past and sometimes rarely feeding at all but never noticed any difference in their growth or flowering at all, never had that "Wow, my plants are really doing great after changing to (Whatever) feed" moment.

So maybe back to a weaker dose of Focus or Miraclegro........ :think: may even give seaweed a bash as I've noticed that mentioned here a few times?

Steve


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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Sat Sep 30, 2017 1:17 pm 
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I set up using 20-10-10 or 10-10-10 and supplement it with ground chicken bone and egg shell. I mix it up in one litter plastic bottles and let it sit for a week. Only problem is the smell, like the early days with fish emulsion, all our orchid enjoy it when mixed at 1/4 and 1/2 strength.

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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Sat Sep 30, 2017 2:44 pm 
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OCRC_Dir_China wrote:
Only problem is the smell, like the early days with fish emulsion.

:? Errrrrr!....................I think I'll stick to Miraclegro thanks Kenneth. :lol:

Steve


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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 8:33 pm 
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Rainmix is indeed very hygroscopic - but that seems normal for any powdery fertilizers if left open. I ran a 12 month trial for another (commercial and expensive) non-orchid fertilizer which has the same qualities if left open. I use two different strengths 15-5-15 for six months then 12-5-20 for flowering and they have produced dramatic results for the way I grow my plants. That said, everyone to their own, and I know that Rainmix is very carefully formulated for orchid culture and is an excellent product for orchid plants using rain water.


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 Post subject: Re: Rainmix
PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 12:22 pm 
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orchidman wrote:
Rainmix is indeed very hygroscopic - but that seems normal for any powdery fertilizers if left open. I ran a 12 month trial for another (commercial and expensive) non-orchid fertilizer which has the same qualities if left open. I use two different strengths 15-5-15 for six months then 12-5-20 for flowering and they have produced dramatic results for the way I grow my plants. That said, everyone to their own, and I know that Rainmix is very carefully formulated for orchid culture and is an excellent product for orchid plants using rain water.

Hi,
I wouldn't question the quality of Rainmix but I never leave the container open, the top is only off for those few seconds whilst measuring out the dosage......still, who knows! :confusion-shrug:
After seeing the results of your trial maybe I'll have to try something like that, mix it up a bit to keep the plants on their toes?, because I noticed this year that the flower spikes on a couple of my plants (Comparettias speciosa & macroplectron) look like stumps compared to the long branches they had last year.

Steve


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