Pros: They work and come with a Miracle- Aerator; guaranteed.
Cons: More expensive than Jobe's Plant Food Spikes.
I used Jobe's Plant Food Spikes (and reviewed them) for many years and they work! However I finished the package and couldn?t resist trying another brand. I am reviewing Miracle-Gro Indoor Plant Food Spikes
About the product:
These are slow release plant food sticks for flowering and foliage houseplants. They provide essential major nutrients for up to 60 days according to the manufacturer, Scotts. The website is www.scotts.com. The spikes should be used year round. They could not be easier to use and they are clean. There is no messy liquid.
These 2-inch green sticks come inside a bubble attached to a cardboard backing. Unlike Jobes, they also come with what is called a Miracle-Aerator or spike inserter. I will get into what this is in a moment. There are 20 spikes per package, which is 1.1 ounces.
The three essential nutrients in plant food are nitrogen, phosphorus (as available phosphate), and potassium (as soluble potash). Each plays a role in building healthy plants. Nitrogen encourages growth of leaves and stems while phosphorus and potassium increase vegetable production and root growth. Most plant foods also have trace elements, small amounts of other nutrients that are needed to grow healthy, beautiful plants.
Plant foods are labeled according to the percentages of each of the key components they contain. The label indicates the relative amounts of the three essential nutrients with an analysis formula (for example: 15-30-15, 8-7-6, 7-7-7, or some other combination). My Miracle-Grow Spikes amounts are 6-12-6.
What this means is that 6% of the spike is the total nitrogen, the 12% is the available phosphoric acid and the other 6% is the soluble potash. If you would like to see a full list of the guaranteed analysis and the total metals in this product, they can be seen at:
Comparing these numbers to Jobes we see that Jobes analysis is this: The total nitrogen is 13 It also contains 4%, Phosphate and 5% Soluble Potash. Clearly these have more nitrogen. I did some searches and research. I am not a scientist and would not even begin to attempt to analyze the difference in nitrogen. It is clear that it is needed but how much is not clear. If anyone wants to leave a comment who can explain if the difference in nitrogen between these two products makes a clinical difference, let me know. In the meantime I will continue to talk about my experiences.
How I use the Miracle-Gro Plant Food Spikes:
I have some beautiful houseplants and occasionally they look as if they are not doing well. Not long ago a couple of them started to look a bit sickly and I had bought these sticks.
What I like about these really is the Miracle Aerator. Silly as it sounds, one particular plant has very hard soil. Basically it sits in a lot of gravel so pushing a stick in is difficult. Now I can just make a hole in moist soil halfway between the stem of the plant and the pot rim. I then put a spike in, which goes down much easier since a hole has been made and push it down until it is covered with soil.
Plants should be fed every 30 days during the spring and summer and every 60 days during the rest of the year.
It would be nice if the package had a feeding schedule on it so I could check off when my plants were due for another feeding. If Scotts reads this, I really think that would be a helpful addition to the packaging. The kind of label that says, Your plant is due for a feeding on_______.
The sticks stay at the roots of the plant so that when you water the plant the nutrients do not get washed away like they might with other types of fertilizers. I have never used any other kind on my houseplants, though, but I imagine liquid fertilizer may wash away more easily.
They should be stored in a cool, dry place and that is where I store them.
Please make sure you keep them out of the reach of children.
On the package there is a recommended number of spikes depending on the size of the pot. They are:
~3- 4-inch pot- 2 spikes
~5-6-inch pot- 3 spikes
~7- 8-inch pot- 4 spikes
~9- 10-inch pot-5 spikes
~11-12-inch pot-6 spikes
Some thoughts and how my plants are doing:
Miracle-Grow sticks are more expensive than Jobes. I paid $.99 for 30 of those and $.99 for 20 Miracle-Grow sticks. I do like the plant spike, however! I don't think it is worth the difference in money since I can use a stick to poke a hole if I need to.
My new spikes are still inexpensive and so easy to use. More importantly, for me, they have revitalized my wilting plants. I have them in all my plants but the couple that really were not doing well are doing much better.
I will recommend these spikes but in the future buy Jobes because I am not convinced these are any better or different enough and I would just as soon save the money.
They work well on any kind of plant. I have flowering plants, cacti, ivy and jade plants to name a few. They work well on any kind of houseplant although I am aware that the company makes fertilizers for certain types of plants. I do not think you can go wrong with Miracle-Grow, but I think you can do better with Jobes and even if your plants look healthy, giving them some extra nutrients is a good idea.
The company guarantees results.
I am rating these 4 stars. I rated Jobes 5.
If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment or e-mail me.