Introduction to Nutrient Solutions
Nutrient solutions are necessary for most hydroponics gardens because plants will not receive adequate nutrients from water alone. Nutrients must therefore be dissolved in the water to ensure healthy plant growth.
Types of nutrients
There are two main types of nutrients: macronutrients (which are needed in large amounts) and micronutrients (which are equally important but needed in smaller amounts). Some of the most important macronutrients for healthy plant growth include calcium, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, hydrogen, nitrogen and sulfur. Essential micronutrients include iron, manganese, copper, zinc, nickel, boron and chlorine.
As you can imagine, there are thousands of ways to combine these nutrients to create endless hydroponics solutions. You can think of hydroponics nutrient solutions kind of like vitamin supplements or vitamin water for humans—there are many different kinds and each one has its own advantages. It’s up to you to choose the right one for your hydroponics system by taking into consideration what your needs and goals are.
Choosing the right nutrients
Some nutrient solutions are great flowering boosters, increasing the density of your flowers and maximizing yield. Others nutrient solutions are great root stimulants, increasing the growth rate and size of the plant roots and helping your plant absorb more nutrients. Some nutrient solutions can even be used to make your fruits, flowers and buds taste sweeter!
Although you can mix your own nutrients, there’s really no reason to take on this extra step as there is already a huge variety of high-quality, pre-made solutions. One of the best is the General Hydroponics FloraSeries, a three-part building-block nutrient system that contains all primary, secondary and micronutrients required for balanced plant nutrition.
For more great products, including nutrient solutions, growth media and lights, browse our online store.