Roses forum→pH Meter

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(Zone 5b)
Roses
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Jack01
Jul 19, 2021 8:24 PM CST
I am planning to buy a PH meter to monitor PH levels for rose plants.
There are lot of PH meters on market with various reviews.

Is any one on this forum has experience with PH meters ? any recommendations?
Name: aka Annie
WA-rural 8a to (Zone 7b)
Sandsock
Jul 19, 2021 10:16 PM CST
If you aren't going to test very often, red cabbage and distilled water works well. Found out my pots are ph7, but was using ph10-11 water...ooops!
(Zone 5b)
Roses
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Jack01
Jul 23, 2021 11:24 AM CST
--BUMP---
Any feedback on PH meters ?
Name: Margie
NY (Zone 7a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Photo Contest Winner 2020
MargieNY
Jul 23, 2021 6:43 PM CST
http://rosemania.com/product10...
This is the one I have and where I purchased it
Observe, observe, observe
We are fortunate to "see" & appreciate nature in ways others are blind.
Name: Mike Stewart
Lower Hudson Valley, New York (Zone 6b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Photo Contest Winner 2020 Garden Photography Roses Bulbs Peonies
Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Dog Lover Cat Lover Birds Enjoys or suffers cold winters Region: New York
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Mike
Jul 23, 2021 9:09 PM CST
I have the same one that Margie posted above. However, I have a couple of less expensive ones that are just as accurate.
PNW (Zone 8b)
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Aerith
Jul 23, 2021 10:07 PM CST
Mike, which brand inexpensive do you have? I have a Sonkir, but no matter where I use it, 7 is the only number I've got. Don't know if it is accurate. Maybe I need to send samples to a lab. D'Oh!
Name: Mike Stewart
Lower Hudson Valley, New York (Zone 6b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Photo Contest Winner 2020 Garden Photography Roses Bulbs Peonies
Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Dog Lover Cat Lover Birds Enjoys or suffers cold winters Region: New York
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Mike
Jul 24, 2021 8:08 AM CST
The two less expensive models I have are ancient, and are no longer manufactured. However, that being said, I'm not sure I'd worry too much about pH levels, unless you know for certain that it's likely to be significantly skewed toward acidic or alkaline conditions. Although roses are generally described as preferring slightly acidic soil, they are adaptable. In fact, the famous rosarian J.H. Nichols' superb 1937 book entitled "A Rose Odyssey" addresses this topic, as he recounts the time he visited Pedro Dot's hybridizing gardens in Barcelona:

"I have already reported the high degree of alkalinity of soil along the French and Italian Riviera, which frankly contradicts the assertion of some of my fellow American rosarians that rose soil must be acid. Let us now study the Spanish soil. The province of Barcelona is considered the garden center of Spain. Fruits, vegetables and roses grow more luxuriantly there than anywhere else... The soil, a yellow clay loam, apparently devoid of organic matter (humus), does not conform with our notions of fertility... Gardeners there use but little manure, for there are few cattle. Pedro Dot has a two-acre rose garden around his house, and roses grow there as I have never seen them grow elsewhere. The soil is the native soil.. I brought a sample to Dr. Bizzell, professor of soil technology at Cornel University in New York. His analysis was a pH concentration of 7.93... On reading this analysis, one is astonished at the amount of lime... From this and further discussions with Dr. Bizzell, it would seem that the whole problem of rose soil hinges on bacterial action promoted by porosity and aeration of the soil... and no fast rule can be established."
Name: Mike Stewart
Lower Hudson Valley, New York (Zone 6b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Photo Contest Winner 2020 Garden Photography Roses Bulbs Peonies
Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Dog Lover Cat Lover Birds Enjoys or suffers cold winters Region: New York
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Mike
Jul 24, 2021 8:12 AM CST
If you want to test your meter's ability to register a number other than 7, try dipping it in vinegar to see if it registers acid (below 7), or make a slurry of garden lime and water to see if it registers alkaline (above 7).
PNW (Zone 8b)
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Aerith
Jul 24, 2021 1:25 PM CST
Thank You! I'll try that.
Santa Barbara, CA (Zone 9b)
SusaninSB
Jul 24, 2021 9:39 PM CST
As a recently retired chemistry teacher of 33 years, I can tell you that pH meters are all over the map in terms of accuracy. I had expensive bench top meters that I calibrated carefully with pH 4 and pH 7 buffers that worked amazingly well when my kids used them for high-end labs. For more mundane use (like our pH of common household substances lab), I used the hand-held ones that are similar to the ones garden places sell. Those are extremely variable. You can test it by using it on common white vinegar; the pH should be 2.4. That's easy, b/c it's standardized to be 5% acetic acid. It's harder to give you a specific for a basic solution, b/c you'd have to know the concentration of what you're testing. Distilled water (technically) should be 7, but it often absorbs CO2 if exposed to air and tests below 7. My tap water ranges from 8.0-8.5. Some of the better ones might even give you specific pH buffers to test/calibrate with. I have more to say, but egads, this is already too long!
[Last edited by SusaninSB - Jul 24, 2021 9:43 PM (+)]
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(Zone 5b)
Roses
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Jack01
Jul 25, 2021 8:34 PM CST
Thanks you very much for all the info
Name: Zoƫ
Albuquerque NM, Elev 5310 ft (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Herbs Salvias Composter Bee Lover Container Gardener
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NMoasis
Jul 25, 2021 8:45 PM CST
@susaninsb thanks for that valuable info! Thumbs up
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