Traditionally plants grow in the soil to get all the necessary nutrients. But if you are using a hydroponics system, it would be essential to deliver the nutrients to leaves and plant roots. It’s because there is no soil for absorption. Adding fertilizers to the water and expecting plants to grow naturally is not possible.
If you want to let your plants grow healthy and thrive with all the nutrients, then using the formulated fertilizers specially made for hydroponics is essential.
Some plants have particular requirements. Hence, one needs to properly understand what is going on in your plant’s roots and why.
The process may seem complicated, but we are here to help you choose the best hydroponic nutrients in Australia.
Before we dig deeper into the details, let us recognize why plants require fertilizers in the hydroponic system.
Why Do Plants Need Fertilizers For Growth?
Plants have diverse needs depending on where they are in their growth cycle. The nutrient level varies from one plant to another.
Primarily there are three stages of plant growth.
- The initial phase of germination and root development
- Vegetative growth where there is the development of root and leaf
- Flowers blooming and fruiting
Plants require dozens of nutrients to grow healthier and faster. There is carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen that plants can receive from the water or air. At the same time, carbon dioxide is mandatory for plants to form organic compounds. Besides, plants also need minerals for overall growth.
A) Macronutrients – central components of the fertilizers
Nitrogen – for the formation and synthesis of chlorophyll
Phosphorus – required for photosynthesis
Potassium – to create starch and sugar
B) Secondary Nutrients – added or part of the fertilizer
Calcium – for the healthy growth of the cells
Sulphur – development of protein and amino acids
C) Micronutrients – might be in the plants but at times added for the growth
Copper – Activation process of enzymes
Chlorine – healthy roots
Sodium – passing water throughout the plant
Iron – starting chlorophyll and photosynthesis process
Zinc – an essential mineral for the enzymes
Always keep an eye on the plants to identify which minerals the plants require. For instance, if the leaves are turning yellow, it requires iron. The black or yellow spots in between the veins, then there is magnesium deficiency.
Understanding what’s precisely going into the plants and their roots will bring a solution and clarity. A hydroponic system requires fertilizers that are carefully selected as per the requirements of the plants. These fertilizers are available in liquid or dry granules.
Liquid fertilizers are the readymade fertilizers that the growers will use by mixing them in water. It is simple and easy to use. There are powdered fertilizers available at a cheaper rate. Commercial farmers opt for dry granular fertilizers for the wellbeing of their plants.
HOW TO SELECT THE BEST HYDROPONIC FERTILIZER FOR THE SYSTEM?
With a range of fertilizers available, consider how much work you are willing to put in for the blending. There are many variations of premixed fertilizers which require different levels of effort.
- MIXING THE FERTILIZERS VS PREMIXED FERTILIZERS
If there are plants with specific requirements of the nutrients, then premixed fertilizers might be a good fit. However, by mixing the fertilizers, you will have better control over plants’ nutrients; it also demands research and implementation.
- pH LEVELS & ELECTRICAL CONDUCTIVITY LEVELS
When you add anything to the water of the hydroponic system, two things are bound to happen. First, the pH level will determine the acidic level and the essential nutrient levels. The electrical conductivity will gauge the necessary nutrients present in the feeding solution.
- CHANGING FERTILIZER FOR DIFFERENT GROWTH STAGES
There are two growth stages in the hydroponic garden – vegetative growth and blooming. In the initial growth phase, the plants require nitrogen and phosphorus during the beginning stages. As the plant reaches the maturity stage, it starts blooming, where all the necessary nutrients are offered for a healthy harvest.
- CHECKOUT THE DEFICIENCIES
When the plants are not receiving the nutrients, they will show sure deficiency signs in leaves, veins, or stems. Altering the fertilizer during that time can dramatically prevent them from disease and death.
- RECOGNIZE WHAT YOUR PLANT NEEDS
No matter what type of plant you grow – fruits, vegetables, or herbs – it may ask for a different environment and growing conditions.
It is vital to recognize what your plants need in the hydroponic system. You may alter the nutrients according to the plants you are growing.
Before you head out to purchase your hydroponic fertilizer, we recommend you keep a few things in mind. Are you ready to spend more or want an affordable option? Do you want to save costs and time or experiment on your own?
At the Hydro Kingdom, our team has hands-on experience in offering hydroponic supplies in Adelaide. If you are someone who is planning to invest in a hydroponic system, then get in touch with us today. Our team will guide you through selecting the best hydroponic nutrients for your system.