Water Changes and Adding Nutrients
Hi I’m Shiran from Aqua Gardening.
In this Frequently Asked Questions Video for Thriving Hydroponics Gardens – we are going to look at some of the challenges around water changes and how to add nutrient and additives to make your plants achieve the most possible!
To get the best results from hydroponics, the water has to be tailored to the plants you are growing. Each variety of plant requires different moisture levels, Ph levels, and even different strengths of plant food.
Changing the water regularly in the tank, and increasing the oxygen levels inside the water, are two additional factors which boost plant growth immensely!
Why are water changes necessary in hydroponics? Over time all the good minerals are used up by the plants, leaving the ones they don’t need or can’t absorb, which become more concentrated as the water level drops, or if more nutrient is added.
The EC level could end up appearing the same or higher on a digital meter that when you started, however it could well be a mix of the toxic minerals the plant doesn’t want.
The safest thing to do is to dump the water regularly on your soil garden, or on some trees. You will see them explode in growth.
The type of plant food, called nutrients, has a big factor into the length of time between water changes.
Not all nutrients are created equal, but with our advice we will recommend the best nutrient suits your schedule, plants and budget. They come in mineral and organic forms.
The mineral nutrients are made from rocks, and organics are the product of fermentation processes.
Keep in mind, mineral nutrients are the only form of nutrient which plants can absorb directly, plants cannot actually absorb organic nutrients! You need microbes in the growing media to break down the organic nutrients into their mineral parts to feed the plant.
As your plants grow larger, a feed schedule can guide you to how much nutrient you should be feeding them. Plants may use up to six times the nutrient level they needed compared to when they were seedlings. Base nutrients are added to the water first, following by additives which can really turbo charge your grow.
After all the additives are in the system, check your pH and EC and adjust to match the feed chart. If you have a mix of different plants which require different EC levels and you can’t split their water reservoirs, aim for middle ground between what all of them require.
As much as the plant’s leaves need CO2 to breathe, the plants roots need air. With an air pump and air stone in the water reservoir of your system, you can turbo charge your plants growth. Be aware not all nutrients respond well to aeration, especially organic nutrients. Organics commonly increase in microbial action when they are bubbled and can go bad faster. But the response you get when using mineral nutrients is amazing!
At Aqua Gardening, we have tested all the products before they go on the shelves to make sure you are getting only the best. With our expert advice, we can comment on the feed schedule suitable for you, and other organic plant additives which will make the most difference to your grow.
At Aqua Gardening, we are Australia’s leading experts in hydroponic gardening! Watch on to see more frequently asked questions we receive about hydroponics, or follow the links below to see how you can get access to our exclusive members only online video training and knowledge database – not offered by anyone else in Australia!
I’m Shiran from Aqua Gardening, and thanks for watching.