Dyna-Gro Foliage-Pro FAQs
Dyna-Gro's Foliage-Pro has quickly become my go-to plant food for my entire indoor jungle. Far from a secret to the greater plant community it seems (but one I wish I'd known about sooner). It's hard to beat when stacked up against the overwhelming number of plant foods on the market. Here's why Foliage-Pro is different...
Is Foliage-Pro a balanced food?
Yes, definitely. And it's important to ask that because just throwing a tonne of nutrients at a plant isn't good (in fact, it can be detrimental). I've been known to DIY my fertiliser before, but some natural remedies are overkill in certain minerals. At best, they go to waste, but at worse can build-up and cause other issues.
At first, your plant will be able to use those excess nutrients when it combines it with what it already has available. But over time it depletes the nutrients from the soil, and if what you feed doesn't replenish the ones it's missing, deficiencies and excesses may kick in. See below why feeding a complete food matters so much.
Why does using a complete food matter?
Keep in mind a plant's growth is always limited by the LOWEST level of each essential mineral that it needs (yep, the lowest, not the highest). So there's no point feeding lots of nitrogen for example - which foliage plants like in high amounts - if there's no calcium or magnesium (which plants need in much smaller amounts), as most of the nitrogen can't be used by the plant if there isn't enough calcium or magnesium!
Then you have a different problem to contend with. Those excess minerals that your plant can't absorb, can build-up in your soil (known as salt build-up). That can cause root burn and leaf burn (such as black leaf tips). Other common symptoms you might see are browning or wilting leaves (despite regular watering), higher leaf loss and slowed growth.
If you're concerned you've accidentally caused an imbalance from feeding an incomplete food, or you've DIY'd your plant food and you're noticing declining plant health, or a sure sign is a white salt layer on your soil surface, or salt deposits around your pot drainage holes, then a repot into fresh soil and the move to a complete fertiliser (like Foliage Pro) is recommended.
What nutrients does it provide?
Foliage-Pro is a truly complete food. To make that claim, that means it has all 16 essential macro and micro-nutrients indoor plants need. More than just an 'NPK' food, the nutrients and levels it provides are:
|N||Total Nitrogen||9 %|
Does Foliage-Pro use urea?
No! Foliage-Pro is urea free. This one's a biggie. Urea is what most (usually cheaper), fertilisers use as their nitrogen source. Fine for outdoor use sure, where excess can leach away from delicate roots. But for potted plants? Stuck in their pot with nowhere to go? That's a no.
One reason I won't use outdoor plant fertiliser on my indoor plants, however don't think just because a food is labeled for indoor plant use, that it will be free of urea. Luckily you can check for urea on the label (it should be listed).
The reason I avoid plant food with urea, is urea can play havoc with soil pH, turning it acidic over time, causing root and leaf burn. Best avoided.
Foliage Pro's high nitrate to ammoniacal ratio produces shorter internodal spacing. A fancy way of saying bushier growth and stronger stems. NH4 (that's ammoniacal), is a nontoxic ionised form of ammonia that helps create healthy soil pH.
Does lighting matter when choosing plant food?
Yes, it does when you're on the subject of indoor plants who are exposed to less natural and more artificial light than their outdoor buddies. Foliage-Pro is a favourite as it's been shown to perform well in both artificial and natural light conditions. It's been shown to be particularly good for low-light plants also.
Is a calcium or magnesium supplement needed?
Not a silly question. Plant geeks have adjusted to the idea that we need to supplement both calcium and magnesium because most plant food doesn't supply them. Without these micro-nutrients, macros like nitrogen can't be absorbed properly.
A small but steady supply of calcium is needed for new growth by any plants, but calcium and magnesium are of particular interest for our beloved Aroids. That's your Monstera, Philodendron, Pothos, Anthurium, Syngonium and more.
All plants need calcium, but some Aroids - especially those from areas with regions with high limestone like regions of South America and Malaysia - may need higher calcium levels than other plant families, to support larger, fast, robust growth. If you've got an Aroid suffering root, leaf or stem rot - and you know light and other nutrients are good-to-go - consider adding a calcium magnesium supplement, or changing to a food like Foliage-Pro.
Foliage-Pro has rich levels of calcium and magnesium (in the ideal 4:1 ratio), which eliminates the need to supplement with a Cal-Mag type product. From my research, this is pretty unique for a fertiliser.
Can you use Foliage-Pro for foliar feeding?
Yes! Foliage-Pro is primarily intended for root zone applications (applying by mixing with watering directly into soil), but is suitable for foliar or leaf feeding too. See the foliar rates here >
Because the minerals in Foliage Pro are already in solution, they are immediately available to the plant.
Can Foliage-Pro be used with peat, vermiculite, hydro and leca?
Yes, Foliage-Pro was originally developed for use with soilless growing media such as rock wool, peat, vermiculite and others, and will not harm the microbiology of the soil. When applied to soil, Foliage-Pro acts as a supplementary source of minerals, supplying a balanced quantity of all essential minerals plants require, directly to the root system. Ordinary fertilisers and soilless media force plants to grow an extensive root system to futilely search for nutrients. Not so with Foliage-Pro.
Where can you buy Dyna-Gro Foliage Pro?
An easy one! We stock Dyna-Gro Foliage-Pro right here in NZ >