Learn About Cannabis Supplements:
General Hydroponics offers a simple duo with one bottle for the vegetative stage, and one bottle for the flowering stage called FloraNova Grow + Bloom. This nutrient system is cheap, simple, and easy with excellent results in soil/coco/hydro. The biggest issue I have with the duo is the liquid is so thick it can be annoying to measure out.
Name of base nutrients for…
Now that you understand everything you need to know about picking the right nutrient system, check out some supplements!
Recommended Organic Nutrients.
What’s the Best NPK Ratio for Cannabis Nutrients?
From a grower: “Canna is a Dutch company and one of the best IMO. They make a great product line for growing in coco coir and test their products on real cannabis plants.”
Can I create my own nutrient system?
The FF trio is a popular nutrient system for cannabis growers that contains a variety of natural sources for nutrients like earthworm castings and bat guano, which cannabis plants thrive on. Fox Farm nutrients contain too much organic matter for DWC/hydro (increasing the chance of root problems), but all that organic matter is great for plants in a hand-watered environment to enhance smell and flavor of your finished product. Best for…
Cannabis needs plenty of P & K to make buds in the flowering stage!
Canna Coco is a very popular company for pot growers. Their nutrients have been specifically designed to grow cannabis in coco coir (as you may be able to tell from the name).
Note: Don’t use any type of non-organic time-released nutrients (like fertilizer spikes, or “slow-release” Miracle-Gro soil) because they deliver too much N in the flowering stage and may reduce bud growth.
Botanicare is a great company that’s been around for as long as I’ve been growing, and whose supplements I’ve been using for years (specifically, their Hydroguard supplement is the most effective thing I’ve used to prevent root rot in a hydroponic setup). Best for…
This plant was grown using the House & Garden Line-up (A+B as base nutrients, plus the supplements Roots Excelurator, Algen Extract, Bud XL, and shooting powder)
Examples of Good Can nabis Nutrients.
The House & Garden lineup is an expensive but effective line-up. From a grower: “H&G was started by a top researcher from Canna. They are right outside of Amsterdam and because cannabis is legal there, so both Canna and H&G are able to do R&D using cannabis. I don’t know about Canna, but I know that House and Garden makes all their own nutrients in-house and they work great.”
The main thing is to avoid giving too much Nitrogen in the flowering stage, as it can discourage bud development and add an unpleasant taste to buds, which is why a general-purpose plant nutrient isn’t a good choice in the flowering stage.
Use similarly to soil or coco, just make sure to also get Hydroguard to protect your hydroponic roots from root rot.
Phosphorus tends to increase the number of flowers, while Potassium helps increase the bulk/weight of flowers. Be careful, though because going overboard with either one can burn your plants!
Organic vs Chemical (Synthetic) Nutrients.
However, their Flora trio is a winner. A tried and true favorite of mine, the Flora trio works very well for growing cannabis. I’ve had great success with it in every grow medium including soil, coco coir, and hydroponics. I used this nutrient system for almost a decade and have always been thrilled with the results. I’ve been testing new nutrient systems so I can report back to our readers like you, but based on my years of success I know you’ll be happy with the Flora trio. Best for…
Why not keep adding more and more nutrients? Doesn’t more equal better? No, nutrients are more like a multivitamin than food. After your plant has enough nutrients, adding more gives you diminishing returns, and too much starts causing the following problems.
·Soil version (Organic)
Use the “hydro” version of Fox Farms nutrients when growing in coco coir. Two bottles are the same as the soil trio, but the “Grow Big” bottle is formulated slightly differently for a soilless grow. Follow the feeding schedule (here’s a PDF, here’s a JPG) from Fox Farms at half-strength to start. Generally, the Fox Farms nutrient system will prevent Cal-Mag deficiencies, but it’s good to have extra Cal-Mag on hand just in case whenever growing cannabis in coco coir, if using filtered water, or if growing with LED grow lights.
Don’t want to use nutrients at all? Learn how to compost your own super soil (or buy super soil pre-made online)! Super soil compost contains all the nutrients your plant will need from seed to harvest so you just need to add water. As an added bonus, with composted super soil you rarely need to worry about maintaining your pH. Instead, the composting process develops a colony of microorganisms in your soil that will automatically take care of the pH for your plants to an extent (like in nature), while slowly providing nutrients on demand.
The General Hydroponics Flora trio is a synthetic nutrient that’s so effective it was used by NASA to grow plants in space!
Get the trio: Grow, Bloom, Base (need all 3 bottles for all phases of growth)
A healthy compost tea pulls soluble nutrients and microorganisms from compost, including bacteria, fungi, and protozoa.
Nitrogen is also necessary to create nucleic acid, an essential ingredient in DNA or RNA, and without it, cells won’t be able to grow and multiply.
We recommend not using nutrients made for indoor growing for outdoor plants, as they are usually composed of synthetic mineral salts and can damage soil bacteria.
Potassium also triggers the production of ATP, which works to store energy produced in photosynthesis by creating glucose. This glucose is then used as energy for the plant as it grows. Without sufficient potassium, you will see weak plants starved for energy that appear burnt because they are unable to successfully regulate the exchange of CO2, H2O, and oxygen.
Here are five key compost tea ingredients recommended by the Beneficial Living Center located in Arcata, California, to create a successful tea that will work best for your cannabis.
Build a compost tea brewer.
Organic fertilizers are nutrients that come from organic sources such as animal and vegetable waste. They also include sediments like glacial rock dust and gypsum that contain beneficial minerals for the soil and plant. They are common for outdoor growing and usually come in powder form.
Before building a compost tea brewer, you need to consider the size of your cannabis garden. Most homegrows use 5-gallon buckets. On the outside of the bucket, you’ll need to have an air pump connected to an aerator device at the bottom. The aerator and air pump will oxygenate water so microorganisms can breathe.
Compost is filled with beneficial microorganisms and nutrients, and you can take it one step further by steeping it in aerated water. This process, called “compost tea,” extracts the microorganisms and soluble nutrients into a water “tea” solution.
Calcium is responsible for keeping the structure of cell walls in a plant together. Without calcium, new growth won’t develop properly and the plant won’t function as it should. New growth will be stunted, leaves will curl, and rusty spots will show up on the plant.
Nitrogen is also part of amino acids that act as building blocks for proteins in a plant. Without the necessary proteins, your cannabis plants will be weak and frail. Nitrogen is also a part of ATP, which allows plant cells to control the use of energy.
Once magnesium has helped create glucose, it helps metabolize glucose to make it available for the plant to grow. Without sufficient magnesium, you will find yellowing leaves, with discoloration reaching the veins as well.
There are multiple products that can be added in the middle of your brewing process, toward the end, or right before application: Food for bacteria and fungi can be added halfway through the brewing process to increase the growth of microorganisms; products like SeaGreen and Actinovate can be added before the tea is applied to plants for additional benefits.
We recommend these organic fertilizers:
Organic fertilizers and nutrients can be more forgiving than liquid nutrients. They usually contain less immediately soluble nutrients and more elements that are beneficial to soil organisms.
These micronutrients are needed as well, but in much smaller quantities:
Indoor growers typically use liquid nutrients and mix them in with water before watering plants. Using liquid nutrients is usually more time consuming, as you typically have to measure and mix them in water 1-2 times a week.
Liquid nutrients are typically used for indoor growing, but can be used outdoors too. Liquid nutrients are used for weed plants in soil, hydroponics, and other grow media, and can be pushed through drip lines, misters, and hoses for easy and efficient delivery.
Outdoor cannabis growers typically add powdered nutrients to soil when transplanting a weed plant outside. This will give the plant all or most of the nutrients it needs for its entire life cycle, and if you want to add more nutrients to plants later, you can add them to the top of soil—called “top dressing.”
Growing high-quality weed requires more nutrients, or fertilizer, than most common crops.
The goal of compost tea is to introduce nutrients, fungal colonies, and beneficial bacteria to either the soil or foliage of a marijuana plant to aid growth and protect it from harmful disease, promoting bigger, stronger, and more resilient plants.
Nutrient solution bottles and fertilizer bags will indicate how much of the three main nutrients are in the product, in the form of N-P-K: Nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, For example, a product that says “10-4-4” will contain 10% available nitrogen, 4% phosphorus, and 4% potassium by weight.
Potassium has a number of jobs that largely help regulate the systems that keep a plant healthy and growing. It plays a large role in osmoregulation, the passive regulation of water and salt concentrations in the plant. Potassium accomplishes this by controlling the opening and closing of the stomata—the pores in the leaves—which is how a plant exchanges CO2, H2O, and oxygen.
What nutrients does a cannabis plant need?
Commercial soil blends also exist that already contain the proper mix of these nutrients.
Nitrogen is mainly responsible for a cannabis plant’s development during the vegetative stage of its life. It’s an essential part of chlorophyll and without it, a plant can’t turn sunlight into energy and it won’t be able to grow.
A cannabis plant needs many nutrients, and pulls these from the soil. Left on its own, with good soil, plenty of light and water, and a temperate environment, a weed plant will grow fine, but nutrients will help the plant thrive and grow healthy and strong.
Only start a tea when you can apply it within 36 hours of brewing it. When using as a spray, apply in the evening or morning when the temperature is low and without direct sunlight. This period is also when the stomata—pores in the plant’s foliage—are open to receive nutrients.
Your marijuana plants need the following primary nutrients, collectively known as macronutrients:
Using organics is also great if you want to be more in-tune with your natural environment. Organic fertilizers are readily available from renewable sources and are an earth friendly option.
Some growers also find that growing organically increases the flavor profile of finished cannabis as well as increases yields.
One of the best things about organic fertilizers is they improve the soil while also improving the quality of your plants. Other benefits:
Essential plant nutrients present in fertilizers may help cannabis cultivators raise a healthier crop of marijuana plants with more abundant leaf growth and, eventually, flowers. If you want to grow big buds, the right cannabis fertilizer can help you reach that objective. Without a good fertilizer, the buds on marijuana plants may not reach their full growth potential. Further, marijuana grown with fertilizer will probably be healthier overall, which can translate to more pleasant and full-bodied flavor in the buds.
Integrating these ingredients into regular soil can help you create a super soil with a diverse wealth of primary, secondary, and trace nutrients. While you can also purchase commercial fertilizers in liquid or powder form, natural materials often provide the most powerful nutrients.
The big three primary nutrients that marijuana plants need to grow are NPK — short for nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. NPK are the collective building blocks of any cannabis fertilizer, as well as any thriving marijuana plant. Cannabis plants also need carbon dioxide and oxygen, which they obtain through airflow, and hydrogen, which comes from water.
Plant growth is equally dependent on the work of fertilizers and nutrients. Here are some guidelines for applying fertilizer during different stages of growth.
In simple terms, fertilizer is plant food made from natural or industrially produced substances that growers apply to soil and plants to optimize growth. The nutrients in fertilizers may be beneficial to many different plants, including potted houseplants, flowers like roses and hydrangeas, and cannabis.
Marijuana plants need different levels of nutrients depending on their growth stage. In general, marijuana fertilizer should be applied at least once weekly, along with an ample supply of pH-balanced water.
A plentiful harvest overflowing with healthy buds is the goal of most cannabis cultivators. Light, oxygen, and water are three of the keys to reaching that goal, but fertilizer is just as essential to increasing bud growth. In this guide to choosing the best marijuana fertilizer, you’ll learn why fertilizer is important for marijuana plants along with how and when to use fertilizer to boost flower production and increase yields.
For even better results, make sure to research the best feeding schedule according to the weed strain you are growing.
Nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium are the collective building blocks of any cannabis fertilizer, as well as any thriving marijuana plant. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps.
What is the best type of weed fertilizer?
Fertilizer is plant food made from natural or industrially produced substances that growers apply to soil and plants to optimize growth. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps.
A cannabis garden needs a combination of essential nutrients and trace, or micro, nutrients. The best marijuana plant food will offer a balance of a vital trio of nutrients.
As a rule of thumb, the ideal pH balance for marijuana grown in soil ranges between 6.0 and 6.8. Hydro, or hydroponic, growers should keep their water pH in a range of 5.5 to 6.5. On average, marijuana plants need a gallon of water each day per pound of anticipated flower.
If you want to grow an organic garden, choose a natural marijuana fertilizer containing the following materials:
Why is fertilizer important for cannabis plants?
One upside of synthetic fertilizers is that they tend to work faster than organic fertilizers. They may also be less time consuming and make a good choice for growers who prefer not to get their hands too dirty.
Marijuana plants also require secondary nutrients, which include sulfur, calcium, and magnesium.
Finally, there is a more expansive group of trace, or micro, nutrients that boost marijuana plant growth. These essential micronutrients include zinc, manganese, iron, boron, chloride, cobalt, molybdenum, and silicon, among others.
In addition to weekly feeding, marijuana plants require regular watering with pH-balanced water. As a rule of thumb, the ideal pH balance for marijuana grown in soil ranges between 6.0 and 6.8. Hydro, or hydroponic, growers should keep their water pH in a range from 5.5 to 6.5. On average, marijuana plants need a gallon of water each day per pound of anticipated flower.
Using the right fertilizers and nutrients in the right quantities at the right time are essential to achieving an optimal cannabis grow. Ultimately, the best fertilizer for cannabis is the one that works for your schedule, budget, and level of desired effort. Growing cannabis requires a delicate balance of the right nutrients, so make sure you give your plants the attention they need and they will reward you with delicious, healthy buds.