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Posted:  26 Mar 2013 16:02  
Has anybody used Lechuza pon?  I tried this stuff out as a growing medium and it was horrible.  It came with Lechuza's Deltini container.  The idea is that it operates on a wick system which draws from a reservoir.

So, I plant a peace lily in it, and in the name of science, i put a piece lily of the same size in a traditional container planted with Pro-Mix BX for a comparison of growth and overall health over time.

I water the Lechuza peace lily in until the reservoir is showing full, the reservoir drains over time, I let it have a dry down phase, and then I fill it up again.  However, this time, the wick system isn't working.  It will not draw the water up into the pon substrate.  I empty it out, fill it again, no dice.  I water from above, I water straight to the reservoir so it bypasses the pon... nothing works.

I plant a Phalaenopsis orchid in another, and the same thing happens.  It draws water up the first time, but never again.  I threw the pon out and used an orchid mix for the Phal and Pro-Mix for the peace Lily and it works fine.  Draws water up without a hitch.

Conclusion: Lechuza pon is garbage.

HOWEVER!  I have used it in the bottom of larger Lechuza pots to draw water up through capillary action to the growing medium (Pro-Mix BX, Sunshine Mix #4) and it works.

Addendum to the conclusion: Lechuza pon is garbage... as a growing medium.
Posted:  28 Mar 2013 06:23  
Lechuza Pon is merely a wicking material, not a growing medium.  I have used it for a few years now and have had no problems.  You do need to let the reservoir dry completely between refills (can be up to four weeks for larger pot sizes).  I have no idea why it's not working for you without examining the plant.
Posted:  28 Mar 2013 12:11  
This is straight from Lechuza Canada's website:

"What is LECHUZA-PON plant substrate used for?

The mineral-based LECHUZA-PON with optimum planting properties is the ideal alternative to conventional potting soil - particularly in combination with the LECHUZA sub-irrigation set.

In addition, when you plant your plants in soil, LECHUZA-PON forms a drainage layer between the water reservoir of the LECHUZA sub-irrigation set and the soil layer. The amount of LECHZUA PON required for the drainage layer is included in each all-in-one planter.

How do I repot my plants in LECHUZA-PON plant substrate?

Repotting your plants in LECHUZA-PON plant substrate is really simple: remove your plant from the soil, loosen the rootball carefully and free it from large clumps of soil. After fitting the sub-irrigation set into your LECHUZA planter, place a finger's width of LECHUZA-PON to act as drainage. Then, add your plant and fill the planter with LECHUZA PON. Lightly shake and pack down the plant substrate, adding more LECHUZA-PON if necessary"

The small booklet of instructions that came with the Deltini claims that pon is wonderful for growing Phalaenopsis orchids in.
Posted:  29 Mar 2013 01:24  
You can grow orchids in almost anything that doesn't rot and a few things that do (bark, moss, even soilless potting mixes will work for awhile).  An inert substrate (hydroleca pebbles, lava rock, etc.) will make you a hydroponic orchid grower and must be managed differently.  You need to constant-feed because there are no nutrients in the medium, and you need to watch the water levels carefully.

If you used the Pons as a wicking material as it's sold in the all-in-one Lechuza planter packages, with a good quality soilless medium like Sunshine Mix, you'll have good success with your foliage plants.
Posted:  30 Mar 2013 00:59  
So far, I'm happy with the results from the foliage plants I installed using Pon as the wicking material.  They were installed in an office in early November and they've acclimatized well, especially considering that the heat has been cranked up to around 25C - 30C (77F - 86F) for the Winter months. 

I was skeptical in the beginning; I had lost the crown of a mass cane (Dracaena fragrans massangeana) in a pot of four canes, but I cut that back and it's since put out 6 or 7 new shoots.  An umbrella tree (Brassaia actinophylla) was losing leaves early on, but it's coming around now.

And I'm really enjoying the reduced time spent on watering.
Posted:  30 Mar 2013 05:34  
I was dubious about the all-in-one Lechuza system myself, but I'm a convert now.  The only downside is that people can be tempted to tamper with the works...the float, the gauge, the cap that covers the fill tube.  All are tempting targets for fidgety people talking on their cell phones near the plants, and kids.

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