Plant nutrients are split up into many separate parts that not only trigger different parts of plant growth but also contain different vital micro and macro nutrients. The reason why these nutrients are split into different bottles is because not all elements get along with each other and some can actually cause the other to get locked out.
The easiest way to mix nutrients is with a bucket, however the more nutrients you have to mix and the larger the quantity may require more advanced mixing solutions. With a bucket you can get a special stirrer that can attach to most power drills which makes mixing a lot easier than using a stick or big spoon.
If you're using a 3-part (grow, micro, bloom) nutrient, make sure that the micro is always the first thing in the water. This will ensure there is no lock out and everything mixes evenly.
Silica, however, is the one exception to this rule. If added prior to any other nutrient, silica can cause nutrient lock out for anything that is put in afterwards.
Most nutrient companies will tell you what order to put them into the reservoir but if you can’t find the information there it’s always safe to use their feed chart as a diagram of when to add each in particular nutrient.
When mixing nutrients there are some important tips to adhere to in order to avoid any problems. For example, before adding nutrients or supplements, you should check the baseline EC/PPM of the water.
Hard water and PPM levels (.7 scale) can hinder growth which is why it's recommended to use RO filtered water. Add your base nutrient until the target EC/PPM level is reached. The ideal level depends on plant size, genetic variety, lighting intensity, environment, and growth phase.
If you don’t know where to start, consult the feed sheet or nutrient calculator provided by your manufacturer.
Allow your solution to mix thoroughly and then measure its pH (be sure to Calibrate your pH meter weekly to ensure accurate readings). Adjust your pH to the appropriate level based on grow media being used:
Hydroponics 5.5 – 6.2
Coco Coir 5.8 – 6.2
Soil 6.2 – 6.7
At Cultivate we carry a wide variety of nutrients, all with different chemical recipes that can impact your plant in different ways. While the product sheet for most nutrients may not include the potential side effects on your plants, we do our best to know them ourselves so you can avoid any surprises.
Come into our shops in Denver or Oklahoma City or shoot us a message with your grow questions, nutrient questions, or whatever questions you have and get answers fast.