In our blog article: pH Control in Hydroponics we investigated the reason why pH control in hydroponics is so important, and also how to do it.
The daily ritual of visiting their garden to adjust the pH in their nutrient reservoir is one that all hydroponic growers will be familiar with. Having to handle caustic acids and alkalis, carefully adding a little at a time, stirring, re-measuring, adding a bit more, remeasuring again… is a time-consuming daily commitment that is necessary to make sure the plants can get all the elements they need and therefore get the best out of a grow.
It is not surprising that one of the most off-putting aspects for newbie growers about hydroponics is having to learn about, and practice, nutrient solution pH-adjustment. They need to have strong acids and alkalis on the premises which need to be stored carefully, especially if there are kids about. They need to be ultra careful when handling these fluids.
Hydroponic growers need to purchase pH meters, and learn how to look after them. pH meters need to be rinsed off after every use and kept clean, and the probes need to be stored wet, plus, they need regular calibration using yet more fluids. As if that wasn’t enough, the batteries do run down, and there’s always that occasional nagging worry that your pH meter is giving duff readings. It’s all quite time consuming and quite a lot of mucking about.
But this is how hydroponic growing has always been.
That is, until very recently….
Advanced Nutrients pH-Perfect Nutrients – Simplifying Hydroponic Growing
About 3 years ago, Advanced Nutrients brought out a revolutionary new nutrient. The Advanced Nutrient range has always been superb – enabling the biggest and best crops possible. However, their new, revamped nutrient took a giant stride forward in simplifying hydroponic growing- no nutrient solution pH-adjustment required !!!
Just in case the significance of that didn’t sink in, I’ll say it again – No more daily painstaking mucking about with acid and pH meters !!!
As long as your pH of the water you start with is in-between 4.8 and 8.7, then Advanced Nutrients Sensi Grow, Sensi Bloom, Connoisseur Grow or Connoisseur Bloom will automatically adjust the nutrient solution pH for you within moments of them being added. Not only that, but the pH will remain bang-on the money for a whole week.
What else do you need to know?
For the pH-Perfect technology to work, there are a few things you need to bear in mind.
First of all, the system is very sensitive to anything else that you add to the tank. The new releases of the Advanced Nutrients boosters and additive lines are designed to not interfere with the working of the pH-Perfect. Even the Advanced Nutrient versions of additives that would normally alter pH, such as potassium silicate (aka Advanced Nutrients Rhino Skin), will still allow the pH-perfect effect to keep working.
Introduce another manufacturers additive into the mix though, and things could start to go wrong. But just stick to the new versions of Advanced Nutrients products and you’ll be fine. It is worthwhile mentioning that Advanced Nutrients boosters and additives, like their base nutrients are of the highest quality. Each one adds a different benefit. For example, Rhino Skin is a very high quality silicate additive that will give your plants stronger, thicker stems, and give the whole plant better drought resistance. Nirvana adds a touch of organics to your system, improving the quality of your crop, and Overdrive provides a big push at the end of your grow to maximise yields. It’s well worth including a few of these additives in your grow, tailoring which ones to your goals as a grower.
Secondly, don’t be tempted to adjust the pH with acids or alkalis, even if the pH begins to drift a little towards the end of the week. This is where many growers have gone wrong in the past. Just trust in the pH-Perfect system to do it’s job and everything will work out fine. The elements in Sensi / Connoisseur are all chelated which mean that they are available to the plant over a far broader spectrum of pH.
Sometimes, leaving things alone can be hard, but it is definitely the right thing to do.
Make sure that you always renew the nutrient solution once per week. This is one thing that is crucial. After a week, the feed-water in your reservoir should be considered to be spent, no longer containing adequate levels of the nutrients that your plants need. Keep everything else the same and you’ll be growing with ease in no time!