The Mum Chronicles 2.5

Now back to the mums-

They have been planted about 3-4 week now depending on the size.  The weird thing this year is that with in a few days after planting the liners we had some chlorosis show up in about 10-12 varieties.  Chlorosis is where the leaves of the plants turn yellow and look like they have no chlorophyll.  There is usually a couple of normal causes for this of which low pH or low nitrogen are the  most common but magnesium, iron or manganese deficiencies can also be a cause.  However our pH and nitrogen were at acceptable levels.  So we started investigating, and as we did the chlorosis got worse.   We sent samples to a lab to be analyzed.  The results showed that our pH and fertilizer levers were good but while the plant tissue had plenty of iron there was none left in the soil.  To remedy this we are applying an iron drench with a fertilizer boost to help make up some of the stunted growth.

We are still not sure why we had the problem with the iron.  We’ve narrowed it down to the new Fafard soil we used or the new multi-coat time release fertilizer we used or a combination of the two.  Again we sent samples off to be analyzed.  This who episode emphasizes the risk associated with using new products on a large scale.  Because the iron problem showed up so soon after planting that the Fafard soil did not have enough iron to begin.

The Yoder and Grolink varieties seem to be affected equally.  Some varieties of each are still green while some are a little pale and some are as yellow as bananas.  I’d show you some pictures, but it would only scare you.  At this point I think we will loose a few plants, but we have enough time to resuscitate most of them and have them looking good by the middle of September.

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