Do you use nutrients for indoor cannabis? If you grow your cannabis indoors then you might be looking for a better way to grow cannabis or to improve yields. Most expert growers will readily tell you that you need the best nutrients for good cannabis growth. What are those nutrients and how these are used will be discussed in great detail here?
Royal Queen Seeds agree that most of the time cannabis growers make the mistake of adding a lot of nutrients to their mix. They don’t know that what they’re doing can do more harm than good to their plants. To be able to provide the best nutrient solution to your plants, you must understand the ideal mixture of these nutrients.
Where do cannabis plants naturally get nutrients?
All the elements and nutrients plants need to live and flourish are naturally found in water, soil, and air. It is usually natural to add extra nutrients thinking that your plants need more but this may be completely the opposite. There are better mixes and formulas to make the most out of your cannabis plants. It is common too for growers to spend lots of money on the most advanced nutrients without thinking about the results. Sometimes, this can even make things worse. So what kind of nutrients do cannabis plants need and how much do you need to add.
Cannabis plants need three basic nutrients to grow and thrive: nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium to grow and thrive. These elements are not standalone and are usually combined in more complex molecules which plants are able to absorb. There are organic fertilizers that contain N, P and K under more complex and natural molecular forms than mineral ones.
Growing cannabis in soil is the simplest way to cultivate marijuana because this can forgive feeding mistakes because it has buffering activity between chemicals and the roots. Some growers usually add more nutrients and others prefer to keep fertilizing their plants to a minimum. As you make sure that your plants get optimal nutrition, you will certainly help your cannabis grow strong and healthy. Less experienced growers, on the other hand, may find this tedious and may resort in using pre-made soil nutrients for cannabis.
Three different diets
Just like animals, each phase of a plant’s life requires different nutrients. When growing in good soil, no additional nutrients should be added especially during the seedling stage of a plant’s life. Make sure that pots that you use are large enough to provide enough humidity to the soil and room for plant’s roots to grow and branch out freely.
When you are growing cannabis in artificial mediums that have no natural nutrients, root boosters and seedling nutrients can be used. Roots boosters are made of enzymes, bacteria, and other compounds that boost good root growth. The nutrients that seedling use contain a mix of the three main nutrients, usually in the ideal amounts that your sprouts will appreciate. A similar nutritional effect would be obtained by providing young plants with nutrients used during the vegetative stage. This is usually given at one-quarter of the vegetative stage nutrient dose. But unless it is fertilizer specifically produced for cannabis, there is a good chance it will be very strong and therefore you need to reduce in dose.
During the vegetative stage, your plants need high nitrogen and potassium and a moderate intake of phosphorous. Usually the amount of phosphorous should be about half of the amount of nitrogen while potassium levels can have from one-third to half of the nitrogen levels.
During the cannabis’ flowering stage, nitrogen levels should be reduced as phosphorous amounts are increased. Commercial cannabis fertilizers are used for growing and flowering phases according to the three important principles.
Moving from fertilizer mixes that are for the growing phase to the flowering phase is crucial. This is because cannabis needs a new set of nutrients during the flowering phase. Nitrogen at this time is of very low importance and is usually present in very low amounts in mixes during the flowering stage. Potassium and phosphorous are present to support the flowering plant. Fertilizer mixes with a balanced NPK should be used cautiously because this might overfeed or underfeed your plants with essential nutrients. This can cause severe effects on your plants as well. The correct proportions of the three main elements are calculated by the manufacturer of the fertilizer mix. Usually, all you need to do is to add water to the mixture.
In addition to the NPK mix, cannabis actually needs small amounts of secondary and micronutrients. Some of these are more important compared to others for plant’s health. There are also micronutrients that are already present in good soil. There is no need to add these because doing so can lead to nutrient excess. You may also find special additives but this is only advisable for more experienced growers because overfeeding could be detrimental to your plants.
Can you underfeed or overfeed your cannabis plants?
When growing cannabis it is usually better to be very cautious about what you use. A cannabis plant growing with just a little added nutrition will develop improved yields than a plant growing in the over-fertilized growing medium.
You should add nutrients to water only every other day as you water your plants. If you are still in doubt about how much to give your plants just cut this in half for good measure. This is the most simple and valid rules for feeding a marijuana plant.
Nutrient deficiencies and overdoses will be detected usually by a change in the plant’s appearance and leaf color. Overfeeding symptoms have similar effects as to nutrient deficiency. Evident signs of a nutrient imbalance are drooping and yellowing of the leaves, irregular leaf shape or dimensions, the presence of brown spots and burnt edges.
Yellowing leaves could mean that there is a problem in the vegetative and early flowering phases of a cannabis plant life. Yellowing is actually normal when this is present towards the end of the flowering stage. For specific nutrient problems on cannabis plants, you may also refer to grow bibles and from growing gurus online or offline.
If you find that you are not able to handle a nutrient problem through a correction in nutrition, flush the soil with distilled water at neutral pH for a few days. Then you can start with the nutrient mix at half dose. You must remove the first few centimeters of soil which are likely where excessive nutrients are present. All these efforts will give you a clean slate, however, these are all drastic measures.
If you underfeed or overfed your cannabis most likely these have been irreparably damaged. This could take time to recover and your harvest will be reduced dramatically. If you are growing fast-growing autoflowering strains, nutrient mistakes will be able to reduce your yield.
Some important considerations
Achieving the ideal pH is important for correct nutrients uptake by your cannabis. All fertilizers need water and grow medium pH to some degree usually some more than others. A wrong pH level can stop the intake of nutrients from the roots thus leading to an underfeeding situation. This happens even if you are adding the correct mix to water. Be sure to keep a close watch to your plants as you provide it new nutrient solutions that are relevant to your grow such as pH Up or Down, or other natural alternatives.
Nutrients are stored within the cannabis plant itself after these are absorbed from the roots. This can lead to a bad chemical taste in the final product. Most of the growers stop fertilizing weeks before harvest and use distilled water to flush their soil to force plants to use these excess nutrients and this results to a better and smoother smoke. There are many important things you must remember about the final flush during harvest time.
When using nutrients on your cannabis plants, make sure to find out more about a cannabis strain to find out about any special requirements that the plants need. And if there are special soil and nutrients needs, you must consult an experienced grower or breeder for pointers.
There are many good places to find special growing techniques for each plant. You can try Leafly, cannabis-friendly website that will give you timely and special information about any cannabis strain. Leafly also lets you in on the nearest places to buy cannabis and cannabis seeds from your location. You can also find special tips on how to grow, feed and harvest cannabis as well.
Where to buy the best nutrients for good cannabis growth
You can purchase cannabis-friendly nutrients for indoor cannabis from online cannabis growing sites as well as from local cannabis seedbanks and supplies. There are a number of good products: nutrients and fertilizer mix to check out. Usually, this is a hit and miss situation that you may find yourself in. But later on, you will surely get the best out of your cannabis plants.