Which Nutrients Will Help Me Grow Bigger Stronger Cannabis?
If you are new to growing cannabis the question of how and what kind of nutrients your plants need is a huge question requiring hours of research; but I did the research for you and put it all together here for easy access.
There is no question, if you are growing cannabis indoors or out you should be using nutrients to increase the speed of the plant’s growth but also to increase the bud yield. Without the correct nutrients at the right times, your plants won’t be big producers if they survive at all. Growing indoors under grow lights for 18-hour periods is going to require nutrients to support your plants or they’ll just die.
|Remo Nutrients Start Kit Bundle: (Editors Choice)||Remo|
|Advanced Nutrients Hobbyist Bundle||Advanced Nutrients|
|FoxFarm BushDoctor Liquid Nutrient Kit||Fox Farms|
|General Organics Go Box||General Organics|
|General Hydroponics Flora Series Performance Pack||General Hydroponics|
What ratio of NPK is best for growing cannabis?
OMG! There are so many options and formulas where do I start? Well, how about with the basics. If you give your cannabis plants the right combinations at the correct time your plants will thrive but get the mix wrong and you can burn your plants or even kill them. Two of the cannabis plants life phases require nutrients while generally, plants in the seedling stage don’t require additional nutrients.
To get pro results your cannabis plants will need the correct amounts of N-P-K which represents nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium.
Two Distinct Life Phases Call for Different Nutrients
In the first phase of the cannabis plant growth or the “vegetative stage,” your nutrient mix should be high in nitrogen. When the plant enters the “flowering stage” the nutrient formula needs to change to reduce nitrogen levels and increase phosphorus and potassium. Phosphorus increases the number of buds and potassium builds up the bulk in the buds. More nutrients isn’t better for your plants, stick to your nutrients feeding guidelines carefully! Too much nutrients will burn or kill your plants, not enough and your plant’s performance will be lackluster.
No matter what, don’t use time released nutrients like Miracle Grow because it will deliver far too much Nitrogen for the flowering stage which will reduce bud growth and who wants that?
The pH of your water/nutrient mixture has to be at an optimum level for cannabis or your plants will experience “root lock” where the roots of your plant can’t absorb nutrients from the growing medium.
pH Ranges for Cannabis
- Soil: 5.6 – 6.8
- Coco Coir: 5.5 – 6.5
- Hydroponics: 5.5 – 6.5
The extra time it takes to pH your water will pay dividends in happy healthy plants.
What are the differences between nutrient brands?
Well, it’s complicated. Besides the obvious different nutrient ratios that each manufacturer believes to be the best for each stage of cannabis plant life and the fancy packaging, the main differentiator is ingredients.
NPK can come from many different ingredients and compounds and the combinations each of which will react with cannabis plants in different ways. This means that competitors could have the same NPK ratios on the label, but the products could act very differently on your cannabis plants.
What growing medium soil, hydro or Coco Coir
The next issue to deal with is the type of nutrients for the growing medium you are using. Each medium has different properties and moisture retention rates so of course, you need to different amounts of nutrients for some mediums and different type of nutrients all together for others.
If you are growing hydro you must rely on chemical nutrients instead of organic. Soil and Coco use the same nutrients just at different mixture ratios.
There are nutrients and nutrient supplements available to you as a consumer. It’s important that you use a base nutrient that contains NPK and not a supplemental option. There’s a big difference, while base nutrients come at great strengths the supplemental options are meant only as an addition to a base nutrient and are in a much lower strength.
What’re the Benefits of a Nutrient System?
What is a nutrient system? Generally, a nutrient manufacturer develops a whole growing system of nutrients and nutrient supplements that will maximize your vegetation/flower growth and shorten growth cycles significantly. most systems start with a system of base nutrients and then introduce supplemental nutrients to take growth or budding to the next level. The other major benefit of a nutrient system is that everything is very easy to measure and mix, even a beginner can handle it.
Do you need a Nutrient System?
The short answer is no, you don’t need a nutrient system, but it will hurt your yield not using one and can also make measurement and mixing of nutrients more difficult. You can get away with just NPK in the right amounts but don’t expect photo worthy buds in return. In this case the more nutrients and micronutrients you provide your plants the better they’ll grow and yield.
Which System do I Use as a Professional Grower?
|Save on Remo Nutrients Start Kit Bundle Click Here|
I’ve tested all the nutrient options in this post and currently use Remo’s Super-Charge Kit which has really struck a chord with me. I love the easy measurement system with the large syringe to extract and measure nutrients from their bottles at the same time. If you use the kit as directed you will grow beautiful plants with big fat sticky buds guaranteed. I love, love love this system and I’ll continue using it going forward. Though there are 7 components some of them are only used during the vegetation stage and others just for the blooming stage. Super powerful and organic you should be growing with this system!
|Save on Advanced Nutrients Hobbyist Bundle Click Here|
When I first started growing medical cannabis 10 years ago the first nutrient system I used was General Hydroponics Flora Trio. I grow with that same product for many years very happily. I only started using other nutrient options just so that I could test them to see which option is best. This is a simple nutrient system that is very easy to use and requires very little mixing. I really liked the fact that mixing water and nutrients only involved one or two components depending on which stage your plants are in.
These are great nutrients and suited to beginner growers or those who don’t have a keen eye for detail. You will get better plant nutrition from the more extended kits that require the addition of more components.
This is an easy to use cost-effective nutrient system that is fantastic for growing in Coco Coir and hydroponics and also works but not as great in soil.
|FoxFarm BushDoctor Liquid Nutrient Kit Click Here|
What do I need to say about Fox Farms? Everyone knows they make quality products, I use their soils exclusively. I ran 3 soil grows with the Fox Farms Bush Doctor kit and all were fantastic. I experienced bushy vegetation and fat crystal covered buds, there is nothing bad to say about this formula. There is a lot of mixing that needs to be done but the end result is worth the little extra time mixing nutrients. Kangaroots Root Drench, Microbe Brew Plant Food Activator, SledgeHammer Nutrient Rinse, Flowers Kiss Foliar Plant Food, Boomerang Comeback Formula, Bembé Sweet & Dandy are the components that make up this nutrient system. You can’t go wrong with Fox Farms.
|General Organics Go Box Click Here|
This Sunlight Supply General Organics® Go Box is a starter kit that provides gardeners with a complete line of premium biological plant foods and supplements. Contains (2) 16oz. bottles of liquid fertilizers and (6) 8oz. bottles of liquid supplements. It’s an easy to use the system but requires a lot of nutrient mixing which might not be ideal for beginners. Though I only tested these nutrients on one large grow it was very successful. I noticed very rapid and strong vegetation growth with these nutrients so it’s great for growers who tend to have issues during the vegetation stage of their grow. It really supports vigorous growth and strong branches and stems.
|General Hydroponics Flora Series Performance Pack Click Here|
The Flora Series nutrients product has actually grown plants in space! That’s right NASA used these nutrients when they were testing horticulture on the space station and they rocked it! I grew with the Flora Series many times over the years. When I do grow consulting for medical growers this is the most common brand that I see used. This system is a great simple to use nutrient formula that makes it very simple to feed your plants a powerful but balanced nutrient mix.
Don’t opt out of providing at least some level of nutrient supplementation to your cannabis plants. Those of you growing indoors will definitely need to provide nutrients because of extended photoperiods such as 18 hours on and 6 hours off. Without supplementation, your plants just won’t perform well which will drastically reduce your yield. Spend some money on a nutrient grow kit now and it will pay you dividends in higher yields down the road. Happy, healthy plants are easier to care for as well so don’t make things harder on yourself then they need to be.