Water crystals/polymers/cross linked polyacrylamides (CLP)

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by Windy in Kansas, Mar 9, 2005.

  1. Windy in Kansas

    Windy in Kansas In Remembrance

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  2. southerngurl

    southerngurl le person Supporter

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    I know there is something bad about them, I can't remember. I believe it had to do with them commonly being tainted with something... Let me see if I can find it.
     

  3. southerngurl

    southerngurl le person Supporter

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    Found it.
    (http://arbl.cvmbs.colostate.edu/hbooks/genetics/biotech/gels/principles.html)
     
  4. sylvar

    sylvar Well-Known Member

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    Sotherngurl,
    That link is in reference to making this stuff yourself in a lab. Thats a quite a bit different quality from the stuff you buy at the store. I use Water Crystals a lot as a water source for crickets, millipedes, mantids and the like (keeps them from drowning in their water). If there were free acrylamides in there those critters would die off pretty quickly.

    Sylvar
     
  5. Chris in PA

    Chris in PA Well-Known Member

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    I have heard that during really dry spells that they will actually draw the water out of the plants in order to keep water in storage. I have used them in container plants only. I think there is a measure of truth in it.
     
  6. Marcia in MT

    Marcia in MT Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Dr. Harry Tayama, former head of the horticulture dept. at Ohio State U., once said that the crystals are the best trade show gimmick he'd ever seen -- dry little chunks hydrate to fill a whole jar! However, in practice (he'd worked with quite a few growers using them experimentally) they found that they crystals don't give up the stored water nearly as easily as they take it up. The plants needed to be nearly dead before they could use the water. It's classified as "unavailable water" in soil scientist terms.

    Nevertheless, our city forester uses them in new street tree plantings. However, the crystals they use are MUCH larger than the regular ones I've seen.

    We had some spill outside one of our cold frames and that slimy pile stayed there for several years before it was cleaned up.