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Page 17

Journal of a New Victoria Addict

By Alan Montour with Kit & Ben Knotts
Photos by Alan Montour - Click to enlarge

March 23, 2003

Guardians of Victoria

These friends of Victoria have taken up residence and must be protecting them from insect infestation. Is this an indication that a food source exists? I have not seen any insects present. At least they will keep my Victorias safe from harm so no "eviction order" has been issued!

Still the same home? Yes. I have committed to continue forward to success using my galvanized stock tank. The leaf loss and damage experienced has stopped and the cause is still questioned.

In spite of all the excellent ideas and advice given by the email discussion list, we still think it was the result of temperature differential. Just last night our air was unexpectedly cool, the water warm and one of our babies had similar dark patches this morning. This is the opposite of what we think happened with yours (warm air cool water) but our reason for suggesting it is the same.

I have committed to NOT perform any further extreme water exchanges over 25% twice weekly. And I have committed to NOT rinse any Victoria leaves for whatever reasons. Water hardness tests after the 50% exchange resulted in a reading of 5GH and can rise to as high as 8GH between exchanges.
Leaves continue to have a white residue on the surface, perhaps as a result of water evaporating and a mist depositing this on to the surface. To the naked eye it is not as prevalent but is enhanced by my digital camera.

Only one leaf that was previously damaged has deteriorated and melted. The pH level has measured 8.0 and I have contemplated whether or not to lower this to a more acidic level using vinegar. Twice "weakly weekly" feedings have kept my Victorias advancing. My formula has been to follow mixing directions on the supplement packaging, making a cocktail by combining dissolved Pondtabb, fish emulsion, and Iron Green. I inject only 10cc per plant. This seems to be sufficient so far but is it enough?

If maximum pad size is staying the same and there is no "burn", you've achieved a balance. If you want to stall them now, you can leave it the same. If you want them to continue to grow, you can ease it up, especially for the bigger ones.

Today I may advance my two 'Challengers' to larger pots even though there is no indication of becoming root bound. I want them to catch up to my 'Longwood Hybrids'! Summer is fast approaching and I am eager to see my pond in its former glory. After such a long and snowy winter I am sure you can understand my angst!

It might be a good idea to boost the 'Challengers'. You will be able to feed them a little more in bigger pots and it might be a wake-up call :>)

Now that I have recomposed myself after the other anxiety of possibly causing damage to my Victorias, I really appreciate having been further educated by the members of the Victoria-Adventure list. And yes, I am still nurturing 2 'Columbias' and 1 'Atlantis', though "melt" is an every day happening.    

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Within The Victoria Section . . .

 Introduction to Victoria

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Identification of Varieties


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