When it comes to pH, it’s all about hydrogen. Due to hydrogen’s unique makeup, it plays an essential role in acid-based reactions, which is the bedrock of nutrient uptake for our plants’ roots.
The roots of your plants have specific receptors that take in and distribute different hydrogen molecules, both negative and positive. The accumulation of these polarized molecules by the roots is then combined with the hydrogen molecules that are already in the plant to determine how much nutrients to take up.
This balance is essential to healthy nutrient absorption, and can be easily measured.
The meter above plainly illustrates the pH scale, and how to measure acidity or basicity. The neutral zone of the meter is pure water, with either side becoming more alkaline (7+) or more acidic (7-).
One of the easiest ways to check your pH is with a simple pH meter that you can buy at Cultivate. When it comes to how to pH, it depends a lot on the medium. Peat for example, is more acidic and must be evened out, whereas other mediums like rock wool need to be lowered, as even pure water can be too acidic.