Alternative Nutrient Solution For Hydroponics – Exhausted hydroponic solutions are a potentially interesting resource for hydroponics growers.
Not only do these solutions provide significant water and fertilizer savings, but they can also be used to recycle nutrients and prevent environmental pollution.
Exhausted solutions are increasingly relevant in countries that face water shortages and are unable to purchase large quantities of fertilizers. In addition, they may prevent groundwater pollution. But what’s the best way to use them?
If you want to grow plants without spending a lot of money on synthetic nutrient solutions, consider using Vermicompost as an alternative nutrient solution for hydroponics.
Worms are capable of breaking down food waste and converting it into nutrients for your plants. Worms produce worm tea, which provides your plants with an abundance of nutrients.
One pound of food waste feeds about 1000 worms, and a single fish can produce 10gm of nutrients.
Arancon and Lazcano have studied the effects of vermicompost on tomato and lettuce seedlings. They found that plants grown in vermicompost produced higher productivity levels than plants grown in soil-based media.
However, these results should not be taken as gospel. Further research is needed to confirm whether vermicompost is an effective alternative nutrient solution for hydroponics.
Another alternative nutrient solution for hydroponic gardeners is organic manure. This solution contains the essential nutrients soluble for plants and can be used in hydroponic systems of different types.
Organic manure contains soluble nutrients, which ensures the safety of organic materials in the solution for plants. This solution can be used for growing some vegetables, but cucurbits and solanaceous require supplements.
Vermicompost is a natural source of nutrient solutions for hydroponic gardens. A simple compost made from vermicompost will provide nutrients without the use of synthetic fertilizers.
In addition to organic manure, you can also use fish emulsion or a liquid calcium product as a base nutrient solution. These organic fertilizers can be applied to the plants as you see fit.
While the use of compost is widespread in hydroponic systems, perlite has some drawbacks. The substance is quite heavy and shifts in hydroponic systems.
It is also best mixed with coco coir or vermiculite, but straight perlite grows are also an option. It works well for longer-term crops and drain-to-waste situations, but it can lead to moisture deficiencies.
Peat, a common organic material used in shipping, is relatively inexpensive and widely available. It drains well but is tough to use outside.
Compared to perlite, it may introduce contamination risks. Another alternative is vermiculite, which is similar to perlite and is available everywhere. Vermiculite can retain more water than perlite and wicks nutrients upward. However, it isn’t recommended for growing vegetables.
Rice hulls are another alternative to perlite. They are both lightweight but relatively heavy. However, they must be sterilized often. They don’t retain water, so you can develop deficiencies quickly if you use them in a hydroponic system.
Also, rice hulls are a very inexpensive medium. In areas where rice is grown, it’s a great alternative for hydroponics.
Another alternative to urea is perlite. Although it is an aerated, porous form of clay, perlite has a high pH and is suitable for hydroponics. Unlike hummus, it is also a good choice for hydroponic systems.
It has been proven that it can be an effective alternative nutrient solution. In addition, it can be used in AP systems.
Another advantage of using perlite as an alternative nutrient solution for greenhouses is that it is highly sterile, and therefore a safe and efficient choice.
The system also has many advantages, including increased productivity and reduced costs. Perlite is an excellent source of carbon, and it helps to control the growth of plants and also prevents the spread of soil-borne pathogens.
Its sterility can be guaranteed by industrially manufactured materials while removing the weed seeds and other harmful contaminants from the soil.
General Hydroponics manufactures a variety of fertilizers for use with hydroponics, including a three-part FloraMicro alternative nutrient system. The FloraMicro nutrient is composed mostly of nitrogen, while the FloraGrow and FloraBloom contain more potassium and trace minerals.
General Hydroponics also offers a RapidStart product, which is meant to encourage root growth by delivering a blend of premium plant extracts. This nutrient is especially beneficial for plants that lack the ability to grow their roots and develop tiny root hairs.
There are numerous nutrient products available for hydroponics, each with its own unique benefits. Some are better suited for certain crops than others, while others are best for certain phases of plant growth.
In general, liquid and dry solutions contain a combination of nutrients. Once mixed, users simply follow the instructions on nutrient feeding. Listed below are some of the most popular nutrient solutions for hydroponics.
FloraMicro is an ideal alternative nutrient solution for hydroponic systems. It contains nitrogen, potassium, calcium, trace minerals, and trace elements that are essential for the growth of plants.
It can be applied aggressively to plants that grow rapidly or used gently on delicate plants. It has the advantage of being highly soluble and easy to apply.
The General Hydroponics FloraMicro liquid nutrient solution is also backed by top-notch research and comes with a custom-colored measuring spoon.
Besides FloraMicro, other products from the line include FloraBloom and FloGro. FloraMicro is a base product that contains trace minerals and nitrogen for plant growth and root strength.
FloGro and FloBloom deliver more nitrogen and potassium, while FloraBloom contains magnesium, phosphorous, and sulfur. Its unique carrier molecules ensure optimal nutrient absorption.
The FloraGrow alternative nutrient solution contains a full spectrum of essential nutrients for fast, healthy growth. This chelated nutrient solution is easier to prepare and can be bought in larger quantities than individual micros.
In addition, it is much cheaper than individual micros. The FloraGrow formula contains everything your plants need and doesn’t require complicated feeding schedules.
Unlike other types of fertilizers, liquid fertilizers are pre-mixed and can be used with a variety of hydroponic plants. The only difference between a liquid nutrient solution and a dry nutrient solution is the concentration of each.
A high concentration of nitrogen is necessary for early plant growth while lower amounts of phosphorus and potassium are necessary for later stages. You can purchase liquid and dry nutrient solutions separately.
These two types of fertilizers are often packaged in pairs or threes because they have different chemical properties and would not be optimally mixed if mixed together.
The Nutri-Gro packets label the volume of water needed for a specific nutrient concentration. The other important thing to keep in mind is the growth stage of your plants. The nutrient needs of lettuce versus tomatoes are quite different.
They require different amounts of nitrogen for the seedling stage, while tomato plants need a high concentration of nitrogen to get their leaves.
The FloraGrow series of products have a proven track record. Some of them are organic or natural. Pro Bloom is an organic, all-natural plant booster, which encourages dense, lush veg growth.
The other nutrient, FloraBlend, is a vegan plant booster, which contains essential nutrients and trace minerals. Its Big Bloom formula contains kelp, bat guano, and other organic ingredients to improve the uptake of nutrients.
Vermicompost as an alternative nutrient solution
There are several benefits to using vermicompost as a nutrient solution in hydroponics. Vermicompost provides high nutrient content and is a cheap alternative to fossil fuel nutrients.
Furthermore, vermicompost is a renewable resource and is made from organic matter. Vermicompost has proven to boost the growth of crops and also prevent pathogens from cycling.
Studies using vermicompost tea as a plant amendment have shown that it contains metabolites and growth hormones that enhance the yield and germination of lettuce and tomato seedlings.
In addition, a study by Arancon et al. showed that vermicompost is able to replace 50% of inorganic nutrients used in hydroponics.
Because vermiwash contains humic acid, it contributes to the development of plants. Researchers have reported that vermiwash can provide all the essential nutrients needed for growth, development, and productivity.
It can also reduce the amount of carbon, which is a byproduct of fossil fuel consumption. Vermiwash is also a good alternative nutrient solution for hydroponics.
Earthworms are excellent humifying agents. These creatures can digest organic wastes, including industrial and vegetable wastes. Vermicompost can improve the structure of soil and enhance plant growth and nutrient uptake.
This type of organic matter can also improve the soil’s microbial activity. This humification is beneficial for the plants in hydroponics.
The results of this study showed that vermicompost can enhance crop growth and yields in hydroponics.
These vermicomposts are high in population content and microbial diversity, which suppress pathogenic microorganisms and produce plant growth regulators.
The innovative use of vermicompost is the creation of vermicompost tea. The solid vermicompost is then made into a tea that is similar to hydroponic solutions.***