How to Balance pH for Lotus: A Comprehensive Guide

Balancing the pH level is crucial for the healthy growth and development of lotus plants. Lotus plants can thrive in a wide range of pH levels, from 4.6 to over 9.0, but they prefer a pH between 6.5 and 8.0. In this comprehensive guide, we will discuss the factors that affect pH balance and provide step-by-step instructions on how to balance pH for lotus plants.

Understanding the Importance of pH Balance for Lotus

The pH level of the water directly impacts the availability of nutrients for absorption by lotus plants. If the pH level is too high or too low, it can lead to nutrient deficiencies and stunted growth. Therefore, it is essential to maintain the optimal pH range for lotus plants, which is between 6.5 and 8.0.

Factors Affecting pH Balance for Lotus

lotusImage source: Pixabay

Several factors can affect the pH balance of the water in which lotus plants grow, including:

  1. Water Source: If your water source has very hard and alkaline water full of minerals, growing lotus in above-ground pots can result in a harmful accumulation of minerals in the water over time.

  2. Fertilization: Using the wrong type or amount of fertilizer can alter the pH level of the water.

  3. Water Chemistry: The presence of certain chemicals in the water, such as chlorine or heavy metals, can affect the pH balance.

How to Test pH Level for Lotus

To determine the pH level of the water, you can use a pH test kit or pH meter. These tools are readily available at most garden centers or online. Follow the instructions provided with the kit or meter to accurately measure the pH level of the water.

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Adjusting pH Level for Lotus

lotus 2Image source: Pixabay

If the pH level of the water is outside the optimal range for lotus plants, you can adjust it using the following methods:

  1. Flushing: If the pH level is too high due to the accumulation of minerals, flush out the pot with fresh water while re-filling to replace evaporation.

  2. Acidifying: If the pH level is too high, you can lower it by adding an acidifying agent, such as sulfuric acid or phosphoric acid. Use 1 ml of acid per 10 liters of water to lower the pH by 0.1 units.

  3. Alkalizing: If the pH level is too low, you can raise it by adding an alkalizing agent, such as potassium hydroxide or sodium bicarbonate. Use 1 gram of alkalizing agent per 10 liters of water to raise the pH by 0.1 units.

Fertilizing Lotus for Optimal pH Balance

Fertilization is another critical factor in balancing pH for lotus plants. Use a good aquatic plant fertilizer, either fast or slow release, and follow the instructions. Because lotus grows vigorously, use double the amount of fertilizer per gallon of soil that the label recommends for hardy waterlilies.

When re-potting your lotus, use a good garden soil with a pH between 6.5 – 8.0pH. Then cover soil with 2cm of coarse sand or pea gravel. Place your re-potted lily in a pot wider than 40cm with a depth of 20cm for small varieties and 80cm wide with a depth of 30cm for larger varieties.

To fertilize, push the satchel into the edge of the bowl or pot till it reaches the bottom of the soil. A guide for fertilizer quantity is:

  • Bowl/Pot 40cm – 60cm wide: 1 satchel
  • Bowl/Pot over 80cm wide: 2 satchels
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Growing Lotus in Ponds, Dams, and Lakes

If you’re growing lotus in ponds, make sure the water level covers the top of the pot, but DON’T submerge the leaves. Keep your lotus well away from flowing water features or fountains. To fertilize your lotus, follow the instructions in BOWLS & POTS.

If you’re growing lotus in dams and lakes, there are two ways you can plant your lotus:

  1. Cut 150mm piece out of the side of the nursery pot and place the plant in a sunny spot in 30-50cm of still water near the edge of your dam. Push some mud from the dam against the side of the pot where section has been removed.

  2. Take the lotus out of the nursery pot very carefully trying not to disturb the roots. Place in a sunny spot in 30-50cm of still water near the edge of the dam. Push mud from the dam around the plant.

Home Remedies for Balancing pH for Lotus

In addition to commercial pH adjusting agents, you can also use home remedies to balance the pH level for lotus plants:

  1. Vinegar: To lower the pH level, add 1 ml of white vinegar per liter of water. Retest the pH level after 24 hours and adjust as needed.

  2. Baking Soda: To raise the pH level, add 1 gram of baking soda per liter of water. Retest the pH level after 24 hours and adjust as needed.

Monitoring and Maintaining pH Balance for Lotus

To ensure the optimal growth and development of your lotus plants, it is important to regularly monitor and maintain the pH balance of the water. Test the pH level every 2-4 weeks and adjust as needed using the methods described above.

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Additionally, make sure to provide your lotus plants with the appropriate amount of sunlight (at least 6 hours per day) and water temperature (between 20-30°C or 68-86°F) for optimal growth.

Conclusion

Balancing pH for lotus plants is essential for their healthy growth and development. By understanding the factors that affect pH balance, testing the pH level regularly, and adjusting it as needed using commercial agents or home remedies, you can ensure that your lotus plants thrive in their optimal pH range of 6.5-8.0.

Remember to also provide your lotus plants with the appropriate amount of sunlight, water temperature, and fertilization for best results. With proper care and attention to pH balance, your lotus plants will reward you with stunning blooms and lush foliage.

References:
1. Lotus Care Sheet – International Waterlily & Water Gardening Society
2. Growing Lotus & Water Lilies – OPEN DEC 26th
3. How to Grow Lotus Root For A Peaceful Pond – Epic Gardening