What Food Do I Need For My Hydroponics System?
Hi I’m Shiran from Aqua Gardening.
When it comes to growing your plants, there is a range of plant food options available for your hydroponics system. In hydroponics, plant food is called a nutrient, because it provides nutrition to the plant.
Nutrients come in a variety of forms. They may be liquid or powdered, and form either base nutrients which are high in the main minerals for plants, or additives, which target a specific stage of growth or location within the plant.
Nutrients may be derived from rock salts, or minerals, or they may be derived from organic sources such as seaweed, fish, molasses and animal waste.
Mineral nutrients are the most common, as they have a shelf life of years, and they are easiest to measure, pour, and mix. They last the longest within a water tank, and are also the most cost effective.
Mineral nutrients come in a few different types. Firstly, they may be powdered or liquid, and the liquid nutrients may come in a single bottle, or multiple bottles. Powdered nutrients are generally the most cost effective, as shipping is cheaper, and you get more bang for your buck. The only downside is that most need to be mixed with water first to make a base solution, then this is diluted further into the nutrient tank to feed your plants.
Some of the latest nutrients from Greenhouse seeds are in ready to use sachets, so you can simply tear the sachet open, and pour it straight into your nutrient reservoir. For those short on time, these are the easiest to use.
Next are liquid nutrients.
The easiest to use are single part nutrients, with everything a plant needs to grow in a single bottle. However, because all the minerals are already mixed together, not a high concentration of some minerals can be included, because they react with others.
Two part liquid nutrients are the most common nutrient, because they generally have everything a vegetable or flower needs, in good concentrations. There are also three part nutrients, which helps tailor the nutrient mix through all stages of growth for the plants.
100% Organic plant food is available in liquid form, in single part or two part nutrients and boosters. When using organics, microbes in the solution react when they are warmed up, so storage should be in a cool place, and system water changed weekly. If you don’t have the time to change the water so often, we recommend using pure mineral based nutrients.
Nutrients may also target the growth or flowering stage of plants, or come as a complete formula. If they are for the grow stage, this suits leafy greens, herbs and the first stage of flowering plants.
A bloom or flowering nutrient is the one to use at the flowering and fruiting stage of plants. A nutrient that covers both stages, often needs a little help with another additive in the flowering stage.
There are many additives you can add to the base plant food over the life of the plants. They vary in quality, but the best are simply astounding. Watch roots and flowers grow 10 times faster and bigger, with the best of the root tonics and flowering boosters! You will also notice the difference in smells and flavour from the plants when using additives too.
At Aqua Gardening we test all of the nutrients before they hit our shelves, so we’re sure they’ll deliver good value and the most success for you. Check out our range of nutrients in the links below.
I’m Shiran from Aqua Gardening, safe healthy food for you and your family.