Hydroponics - How to feed your plants
How to feed plants indoors?
Like anything living, energy is needed to fuel growth.
Without food, organisms start to consume themselves, sacrificing health and food to sustain new growth which creates a host of problems, each problem causing a knock-on effect that can take a long time to correct. So feeding your plants correctly and consistently is of high importance.
As i mentioned in the last blog feeding is generally relative to growth so as the plant gets larger so should the dose of food given to them. There are obviously exceptions for some crops but for the most part this is accurate across the board.
You can trust the feeding charts, just understand they are not a guarantee so intervening with a little intuition maybe needed to get them on track at the beginning, if you are not comfortable making these decisions go to a reputable hydroponics shop and they should be able to instruct you correctly with the information you give them.
A common mistake new growers make is being too worried about ‘over feeding’ and as a result of this, the grower doesn't give their plants enough food.
Understanding Hydroponic Nutrient Feeding Charts.
Nutrient feeding charts, can look quite complicated. Try not to let them overwhelm you just break down what you need for each week, or cruise into your closest hydro shop for an explanation.
Week 1 for example is not one feed per week, it’s a 7-day week, and the doses given for Week 1 must be given each day. In week 1 most plants are either small cuttings or seedlings, a cutting has a much larger root zone and can absorb a much greater volume than a week 1 seedling.
As the weeks go by the dosage of hydroponic nutrients per 1L of water will change slightly, make sure you note this weekly differences by following this chart.
Underfeeding Vs Overfeeding in Coco.
For those worried about over or under watering, remember a basic rule - dry roots equals dead roots. If you do not water your plants with enough volume then root zones can suffer. If the root zone is not cared for with daily feeding then they root function is limited which means less food and water is absorbed by the plant. Over-watering a plant really only happens in the early stages of a seedlings life, to avoid this aim for around 5% run off with each feed.
Under-watering plants is an issue that we see new growers falling into more regularly, remember that Coco coir and Coco perlite blends are water & nutrient loving substrates always keep some form of moisture in your root zones at all times for the best results.
If your plants are drinking their pots bone dry in a single day, its time to transplant into a larger growing pot that can support a larger root zone and larger volume of hydroponic nutrients and water.
This topic has so many side-roads, comment below if you'd like to start a conversation on this topic.
As always, if you’re in doubt. Call us or cruise in our hydroponics shop in Cheltenham, the team will gladly explain anything relating to plants.