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Hydro-specific Nutrients


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  #1  
Old 07-17-2010, 09:50 PM
Anianna Anianna is offline
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Default Hydro-specific Nutrients

What is the difference between more easily to obtain nutrients such as MiracleGro and chems made for hydroponics?

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Old 07-18-2010, 08:09 PM
GpsFrontier GpsFrontier is offline
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nutrients made for soil are lacking some essential trace elements. That is because soil contains enough of these. Also hydroponic nutrients are 100% water soluble, soil nutrients are not all water soluble. They are intended to remain in the soil until they break down before the plants can actually use them.
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Old 07-18-2010, 08:57 PM
Anianna Anianna is offline
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I don't have a hydroponics shop convenient to me. Where would you guys recommend I pick up some hydrofood?
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Old 07-18-2010, 09:27 PM
GpsFrontier GpsFrontier is offline
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The nearest hydro stores near me are about a 7 hour drive round trip. I order my nutrients online. Do you live in the US?
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Old 07-18-2010, 09:51 PM
Anianna Anianna is offline
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Sure do. Where do you order from?
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Old 07-18-2010, 10:35 PM
GpsFrontier GpsFrontier is offline
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Well I don't really order from one place, I don't even remember the last place I ordered from for sure. When it comes time to order more nutrients, I just do a search for hydroponic nutrients. Then I check the contact us page of the website to find there address. That way I can find a place that is not real far a way, to try to keep shipping costs down. I live in Lake Havasu AZ, I will also narrow the search down to a close by city like Las Vegas NV (7 hr drive round trip). I try to order from Las Vegas, Phoenix or southern CA, to keep shipping down.

I have been using General Hydroponics Flora series 3 part nutrients, and they have been working fine although they are not cheep. I have been given some Verti-Gro dry nutrients that I am experimenting with, and so far so good. The verti-gro nutrients are a 2 part nutrients, you mix 2 pounds of dry nutrient mix into one gallon of water. Then mix 2 pounds of dry Calcium Nitrate into another one gallon of water. Then apply equal amounts of both to your nutrient solution at a rate of about 2-3 tsp (10-15 ml) per gallon of water.

Although the verti-gro company is in Florida I will likely order from them the next time I order some. 25lbs of the nutrients and 25lbs of the Calcium Nitrate makes about 5000 gallons of nutrient solution. Compared to the 380 gallons that the Flora series makes and still runs a little over $100 for all 3 parts with shipping. That is just me though.
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Old 07-19-2010, 09:28 AM
Anianna Anianna is offline
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Is this the flora nutrients you are talking about?

Any opinion on this starter kit?
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Old 07-19-2010, 07:28 PM
GpsFrontier GpsFrontier is offline
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Yes that is the General Hydroponics Flora series, it looks like that link comes with all 3 parts (Micro, Gro and Bloom), although just keep in mind that the 1 pint size bottles will make about 47 gallons depending on how you mix it. I usually mix it at 10mL (2 tsp) per gallon equally of each. 447 mL in a pint. I have always gotten the gallon size jugs of it. 3793 ml per gallon, that makes about 379 gallons of solution mixed at 10ml of each per gallon (like I usually do). The gallon size jugs run about $25 each (need all 3), plus tax and shipping. I am not trying to sell you on the large bottles, just explaining that in the long run the larger jugs make about 8 times as much as the small ones, for 3 times the price of the small ones.

As for the starter kit, I have herd of, and seen those nutrients. Although unfortunately I have no experience with them at all, so I can't give any advice on them either way myself. I don't even know how many gallons of solution they will make. You may be able to find the manufactures website, and they may have mixing instructions on the site.

This may not be in your case but I usually find that the prices between an online store and eBay were about the same, and in some cases I found better prices from a regular online store. Although I never tried amazon.
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Old 08-09-2010, 11:40 PM
watercatwn6535nd watercatwn6535nd is offline
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This is easier and way more fun. google up compost tea maker check out you tube of course for the directions. also your going to be going inot the worm business as well. time to think fish tanks as well.

First your kitchen craps and compostables are the perfect nutrient when fully composted and free! (free) love that word. i think i prefer a worm composter as its fast and clean.

the worms make an amazing liquid called manure. this is concetrated right out of the composter. but then you can take the dirt compast and wash the nutes out of it with a couple buckets and small pond pump and just a bucket ober the oter with holes in the top buckets bottom. when it doesnt look like tea any more you have the nutes out of it and BAM you just dump this right in your sytem just like its GH.

Or go aquaponic and do a you tube search on soldier flys and use the larvae to feed your fish from your kitchen waist and the hydro system uses the fish water plus you can eat the fish if you like. i'm building a 3000 gallon ploy ponics system right now using 275 gallon totes and plastic barrels. should be able to produce about 150 to 200 lbs of meat a month for market to pay for my gardening addiction. TILAPIA is what i am using but if you have small hydro system buy some gold fish they poop to.

so many options challenge your self just a few years ago i was a master gardener and could do mircales with miracle grow now i could feed teh world substainably year round.

just a fyi pumps for my new big hydro system run about .05 cents per hour so it not a massive expense and i will make mony at it. but my point is you could have free food scraps making larvae in days and it woudl cost you way less than buying nutes and having them shipped plus chicks think its hot!
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Old 08-10-2010, 09:14 PM
Anianna Anianna is offline
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Watercat, hydroponics has been researched heavily for years. We know there are very specific nutrients at specific levels needed for improved plant growth. If I'm going to simply make a compost, I might as well stick with soil, because that same level of uncertainty regarding the nutrients the plants are getting remains the same. Of course compost can provide nutrients, but it is nearly impossible to ensure the correct balance for optimum feeding.

Besides, my compost always comes out a lumpy mess even after I spent the bucks for a tumbler.

You are fortunate that you are a successful gardener. I am quite the opposite. I am the plant killer. Using established nutrients on an established schedule gives me the advantage I need to get the job done.
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Old 08-11-2010, 12:31 AM
watercatwn6535nd watercatwn6535nd is offline
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Lets not give hydro to much credit. at the gh factory they just buy miracle grow compost bags and wash the nutes out and with a straw they suck up the different colors for each bottle. the trick is knowing what straw to use.

You'll be fine with any thing you use. god knows i use tons of it. but its nice to know how to make it yourself incase you have to.

I do find it funny on these posts talking about quality. its important but not so much. the gentics have way more control over the end result. i dont think i have picked a veggie and said dam those GH nutes are way better than this compost veggies?

Not that it matters but a thought just came to mind. i have been working on a drought resistant tomatoe for about 5 years. my mother plant i cross with i feed only water that is naturally about 82 ppm and i dont know what the make up is. i keep it under a florecent light 24/7 and it grows so slow and it puts on these amazingly tiny leaves from lack of food. but it grows perfectly just dwarfed from lack of food. not odd shaped not discolored simply tiny. but the stock keeps getting thicker like a old plant after seasons of growing an the root structure is perfect and norml size and shape.

so far my obesrvation is that the plant can thrive with minimal nutes, the basis for plants growing large root balls when they are lacking in nutes (searching) seems to be false in this model, health of the over all plant is not lacking in all of its characteristics its the correct shade of green the leaf is the correct shape the stock looks healthy.
this is after years of virtualy no food. i would guess it could be taken out by disease quickly but it would be aguess since the plant looks healthy.

So to have a plant that is in good shape and healthy appears to me to not be as much in the nutes it recieves but more from its inviroment. being the plant is in a perfect;y controlled climate and never seeing any thing change has allowed it to actaully prosper rather than die off as normal plant would.

next its important to note for all you PH and nute adjusting people that this plant is in a 10 gallon recirculating deep water system with a air pump and auto fill valve for water and has never had the water dumped changed etc. it only gets what it evaporates. no build up of anything becuase nothing is added and the plant and water seem to be thriving together.

so now i say if i added some manure switch the lighting i would have deliciuos fruit in a few weekends. or gh or bat guanno. but the plant does not need the nutes to be a plant and my point is that i have been keeping this plant alive with nothing specific and it finds away.

its just food for thought. i know i have some wired dr jeckle stuff going on so i base my crazy ideas on what i find but really i feel like i'm seeing stuff that few in tehw orld have seen with plants that normally grow fro months and now are years old.

out dooors you have to love them you have short time to work with them and then there gone. indoors i take them to the edge of death bring them back make them into olympic ahtletes and do it again. there almost imortal and i'm hoping instead of GMO seeds that we can just wake up some stronger older trates that may help parts of the world grow where they cant now.

Imagine a styrafoam block molded into a floating hydroponic planter with a food plant grwoiing on a nute rich river. it cant be flooded it culd be transported easily. it can be kept alive during transportaion. there are so many things that happen when we try new stuff.

blah blah blah i do hope you system is everthing you hope it will be.
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  #12  
Old 08-11-2010, 01:55 PM
Anianna Anianna is offline
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Plants can be resilient to different conditions, though some of us find certain conditions easier to deal with.

As for your tomato, you say it is thriving in just water, but I don't see how you can say that if it is struggling to produce foliage and won't fruit. That's not thriving, that's merely surviving and it certainly isn't optimal growth, which is what most of us are after.

I don't know about GH grown veggies, since I haven't yet tried GH nutrients, but my Miracle Gro grown plants in Coir are far more robust than the plants I raised last year in compost and soil. They also produce a lot more fruit that is much more tasty. They were from the same seeds, so the conditions obviously played a role. It's not just about the breeding.

Even Miracle Gro will tell you that their product can be used in hydroponics but is not ideal. I know because I wrote and asked them myself. They recommend using other products in addition to theirs if using them in such a way because their solutions lack ingredients needed in a water environment for optimal growth. If optimal growth is in my grasp, why shouldn't I go for it?

I already mentioned I'm no good with soil and compost. I've been an unsuccessful gardener for about 15 years now. The only thing I can keep alive in soil is aloe. For me, everything dies of too much water, not enough water, parasites, fertilizer burn, or soil-born disease. I'm sick of the guesswork and all the time and money down the drain. For the last couple of months, I've been growing my houseplants in hydroculture and I've had a lot better success than I've ever had before. My plants are living and thriving. I've lost a couple, but my rates are much better than with any other attempt at raising plants. If I can improve that even more with established nutrients specifically for hydroponics, I don't see why I shouldn't.

I'm glad you're successful in what you're doing, but I have to be honest with you that I get the sense that you are rubbing my nose in it. Perhaps that's not how you meant it. As far as "you'll be fine with anything you use", I appreciate the sentiment, but 15 years of experience has shown me otherwise. I have an endless supply of rabbit and horse manure and I compost grain, fruit, and veggie scraps along with either dry leaves or dry grass depending on the season. I still can't grow healthy plants in soil or soil mixes. I'm done trying. I'm going with the scientific method and I think it's a little rude to scoff at people who do things a bit differently than you do.

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