Hydroponic gardening is a method of growing plants without soil. Plants, such as herbs and veggies, are usually grown with water-based, nutrient-rich solutions in a hydroponic garden. The plants’ roots are normally supported using an inert mechanism, such as perlite, rock wool, clay pellets, peat moss, or vermiculite.
As this type of gardening isn’t the usual, hydroponic gardeners are often faced with a nutrient deficiency in plants. At times, you probably step into your grow room and witness plants with burnt tips, yellowing, and curled edges on their leaves. These signs mean that your plants are not getting enough nutrients to grow and that you may not be doing enough.
It’s about time to reevaluate the steps you take as a gardener. There might be a few vital things that you tend to ignore from time to time. That said, below are four key things you should be on the lookout for in order to prevent nutrient deficiencies in your hydroponic gardening.
1. The pH levels of hydroponic plants
The ideal pH level of the nutrient solution for your hydroponic plants must be about 5.6. If left unmonitored for too long, the pH level of the solution either drops or goes up of the ideal level. These can greatly impact the nutrients absorbed by the plants. Either the plants get too dense with raw, used nutrients, or the nutrients become too acidic or alkaline. That said, make sure to check the pH level on a daily basis since it can quickly change.
2. Stability of temperature levels
The temperature level of the nutrient solution for your hydroponic plants should be relatively cool to temperate. On a specific note, the level should be somewhere between 66 to 71 degrees Fahrenheit. Monitoring the temperature level is all the more important if you live in an extremely warm or cold environment. That said, make sure to insulate the grow room against outside elements properly. Doing so can help you regulate the temperature of the garden to prevent plant deficiencies.
3. Presence of phosphorus
It’s worth knowing that while phosphorus is deemed one of the essential nutrients, too much of it may cause your hydroponic plants to suffer. This is because excess phosphorus can create a deficiency in several nutrients of your plants, such as iron. That said, make sure to stay away from products like PK 14/15, as they have too much phosphorus relative to potassium. The chances are that they can cause phosphorus buildup, wreaking havoc on your hydroponic plants.
4. Application of humates
There are alternative solutions available in the market that will give your hydroponic plants sufficient nutrients. Humates, such as Fulvic and Humic acid, are examples of these solutions. They are an incredibly amazing yet inexpensive way to ensure nutrient uptake for your plants. These materials are typically added to your nutrient solution, providing true bioavailability to your hydroponic plants.
Plant deficiency can strike even when your nutrient solution is well-balanced due to some factors preventing sufficient uptake. As outlined above, make sure to check the pH levels of your hydroponic plants, the stability of temperature levels, the presence of phosphorus, and the application of humates.
It’s crucial to know the important measures that a hydroponic grower can take to address the nutrient deficiency in plants.
If you’re looking for a hydroponic plant enhancer in the UK, get in touch with us today! We’re happy to help.