Our Adventure With Victoria 2002
Growing in our just-better-than-beach-sand, we have to provide all the nutrients for our Victorias. We have learned the hard way that they are far pickier about what they are fed than other tropical waterlilies. They seem to be sensitive to too much phosphate and have a high requirement for nitrogen, iron and magnesium. After several years of experimenting we seem to have achieved a balance of nutrients that promotes optimum size, flowering and seed production in our conditions.
There are two biostimulants available for use in the cocktail, Roots and Seamate. At the beginning of the season we used Seamate, partly to test it for our friend Wayne Davis of Pondtabbs and partly because it is more economical to use than Roots (we use a lot of cocktail). Over time we realized that the cruzianas were not doing as well as the amazonicas and the hybrids. We switched them to Roots and saw substantial improvement. We speculate that, because the humic acid in Seamate is of such a high quality and concentration, Seamate is terrific for acid-loving amazonica but too acid for cruziana. We now make separate cocktails.
This may seem like a lot of trouble to go to just to have healthier Victorias but, for us and a growing number of others, it's well worth the effort. We think it will prove worth it for anyone with less than perfect growing conditions. This includes blooming in areas with short growing seasons because the plants reach flowering size sooner. It also seems to balance out the effects of varying soil and water quality. For details of the cocktail and how to give it see --
(Or everything you didn't really want to know
about feeding Victorias and were afraid to ask)