Is this safe? (fertilizer)

CourtneyG

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ImageUploadedByTortoise Forum1409083059.292429.jpg ImageUploadedByTortoise Forum1409083105.259436.jpg

Says it safe for edible plants, want to use it to see if I can keep things alive in my tort enclosure.
 

CourtneyG

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I would like to know if I can use this, everything is all natural ingredients found in the wild, no weird chemical fertilizers.
 

pfara

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I would think that a tortoise might end up digging for these. Whenever I put a very light dose of fish emulsion on my plants, my torts kinda start sniffing, digging and eating the substrate. I know my example is a horrible comparison but I'm only worried about osmocote consumption. I doubt they can OD on the stuff, but maybe it can create an imbalance where they might not be able to absorb other vital minerals? Hopefully someone can give you a definite answer.
 

Jabuticaba

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I wouldn't use anything directly where the torts live. What's happening with your plants?


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CourtneyG

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The plants keep dying on me, wanted to use plant food for them. What if I dissolved some pellets in water and then diluted it in my watering can and then watered the plants?
 

CourtneyG

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Just discovered that this is a South Afrikan company and product, emailed the company this question in hope that they might have an answer as well.
 

pfara

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Hey Courtney, why not use something like compost or a liquid fert? Fertilizers aren't bad.. it's mostly the fertilizers with mixed in herbicides that are to be avoided. I think @Tom uses miracle gro plant food with no issues (not 100% sure on this though). I usually just use homemade compost and throw dirty tortoise poo water on my plants. @terryo told me once that she dries her tort poop and uses that as plant food.

What type of soil do you have? Many plant issues start out with the plant medium, in my opinion.
 

Tom

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I can't grow plants in a tortoise enclosure either. I would not put any fertilizer in an enclosure where a tortoise could get direct access to it.

I was going to ask what media you are using too?

What plants and what lighting?
 

CourtneyG

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I have a mix of miracle gro(no fertilizers) and top soil, about 4-5 inches deep. The lighting is my 160W MVB and a 60W LED in the cool or blue light spectrum( it appears white and is meant for plants).
 

Tom

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I think you might just need more light, but as I said, I can't grow anything inside a tortoise enclosure either. My tortoises either eat it or trample it. I had good results growing indoor plants (not in an enclosure) under florescent bulbs in the 6500k color range.
 

pfara

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I have a mix of miracle gro(no fertilizers) and top soil, about 4-5 inches deep. The lighting is my 160W MVB and a 60W LED in the cool or blue light spectrum( it appears white and is meant for plants).
You're somewhat correct on the color spectrum required for vegetative growth. Bluish color (6500K) helps to grow beautiful greens while reddish color (3000K) helps with fruiting. I haven't really grown with LEDs, but I believe it'd be the same as cfls; you really gotta keep the light/light panels a few inches above the plants at all times to keep the plants from getting leggy and toppling over. I wouldn't use an MVB for growing since the heat can be seriously intense.
 

CourtneyG

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I use desert plants within my habitat since water evaporates so fast, the bulbs are also about 7inches above the plants. They eat the succulents, but everything else is left alone and not trampled, it just dies.
 

pfara

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If I had to take a guess, since they're mostly desert plants they might not be getting enough light. You also mentioned that water evaporates too quickly. Does that mean you frequently add water to the medium to compensate for evaporation? The plants could be suffering from root rot. Just throwing out guesses in an attempt to troubleshoot.
 

CourtneyG

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The soil dries all the way to the bottom, the plants are getting a lot of light( the only way I could give them more is tank my plant light off my tank), I just feel they are lacking in nutrients. I have earth worms in the soil to help keep it aerated as well.
 

pfara

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Hmm.. if you have earthworms living in your medium, then the medium would actually be pretty moist I would think. Also, earthworms provide aeration as well as nutrients for plants so I would think adding fertilizers *could* cause more problems. What exactly do the plants look like when declining? Crisping up, flopping over, yellowing, smaller leaves, balding?
 

domalle

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I would like to know if I can use this, everything is all natural ingredients found in the wild, no weird chemical fertilizers.
not only is it not safe, it is downright dangerous
tortoises have ingested it, had it expand in their gut and died from it
like Tom said most of us start out wanting a nice pretty planted environment for our tortoises
but very quickly learn that tortoises and pretty plants in confined spaces do not mix
the simpler the enclosure, the easier to clean
IMNSHO
 

CourtneyG

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Hmm.. if you have earthworms living in your medium, then the medium would actually be pretty moist I would think. Also, earthworms provide aeration as well as nutrients for plants so I would think adding fertilizers *could* cause more problems. What exactly do the plants look like when declining? Crisping up, flopping over, yellowing, smaller leaves, balding?
Sorta a mix of all of this, except the balding.
 

johnsonnboswell

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It is a nutrient issue only in that the substrate is not rich enough.

Having the right plant in the right place is critical. Indoor habitats often don't support plants well. Light, water, proper soil and temps- much like tortoise care- are critical for plants. A wet plant will burn.

That said, the best plant fertilizer is to use good rich finished compost as potting soil. Nothing you can buy comes close. It makes both a good germination bed, planter and tortoise substrate.

Are you successful growing plants in pots out of the habitat?
 

Grandpa Turtle 144

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Courtney G
You said the water is evaporates very fast maybe you have to much humity for desert plants ?


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