Make Hydroponic Nutrients

Making your own hydroponic nutrient solution would save you a ton of money over the ready made stuff you normally would find at a hydroponics store. So here is my first method of making a general purpose hydroponic nutrient solution. For this recipe, you have to buy one premixed nutrient powder which is Masterblend 4-18-38 Tomato Special. This premixed nutrient powder has 4% total nitrogen, 18% available phosphate, 38% soluble potash, 0.5% magnesium, 0.2% boron, 0.05% copper, 0.4% iron, 0.2% manganese, 0.01% molybdenum and 0.05% zinc. If you can’t find 4-18-38 formula in your country, use something similar to it like Albert’s solution.

Always make sure to buy high quality elemental salts because the purity is a must if you’re going to have a great grow. Never use improperly stored salts with high moisture levels which will affect your nutrient solution quality. They must be kept cool and dry at all times.

Part A

  • 1 gallon distilled water
  • 600 grams Masterblend 4-18-38 Tomato Special
  • 300 grams Epsom Salt
  • 1.5 grams Sodium Benzoate as a preservative

Part B

  • 1 gallon distilled water
  • 1000 grams Calcium Nitrate

The above recipe would make 250 gallons of working solution. So it is possible to use 15 ml part A and 15 ml part B for each 1 gallon of water. Finally adjust the EC and pH according to the plants’ requirement.

If it is difficult to find Masterblend 4-18-38 Tomato Special premixed nutrient powder or you would like to make your own hydroponic nutrients from mixing salts, here is my second method which will work fine with many types of plants. Accuracy is very important when measuring and mixing the salts, therefore a scale designed for lab use is necessary. The amounts in following formulas are for a 1 gallon stock nutrient solution.

Vegetative Nutrient

  • 6.00 gr  Calcium Nitrate – Ca(NO3)2
  • 2.09 gr  Potassium Nitrate – KNO3
  • 0.46 gr  Sulfate of Potash – K2SO4
  • 1.39 gr  Monopotassium Phosphate – KH2PO4
  • 2.42 gr  Magnesium Sulfate – MgSO4 * 7H2O
  • 0.40 gr  7% Fe Chelated Trace Elements

Flowering Nutrient

  • 4.10 gr  Calcium Nitrate – Ca(NO3)2
  • 2.80 gr  Potassium Nitrate – KNO3
  • 0.46 gr  Sulfate of Potash – K2SO4
  • 1.39 gr  Monopotassium Phosphate – KH2PO4
  • 2.40 gr  Magnesium Sulfate – MgSO4 * 7H2O
  • 0.40 gr  7% Fe Chelated Trace Elements

Fruiting Nutrient

  • 8.00 gr  Calcium Nitrate – Ca(NO3)2
  • 2.80 gr  Potassium Nitrate – KNO3
  • 1.70 gr  Sulfate of Potash – K2SO4
  • 1.39 gr  Monopotassium Phosphate – KH2PO4
  • 2.40 gr  Magnesium Sulfate – MgSO4 * 7H2O
  • 0.40 gr  7% Fe Chelated Trace Elements

Chelated Trace Element Mix

  • 7.00%  Iron – Fe
  • 2.00%  Manganese – Mn
  • 0.40%  Zinc – Zn
  • 0.10%  Copper – Cu
  • 1.30%  Boron – B
  • 0.06%  Molybdenum – Mo

Start mixing precisely weighed out elemental salts with warm water one at a time in an empty container which is large enough to hold the full batch. After mixing the salts, it is compulsory to adjust the nutrient solution’s EC and pH level before it’s right for your plants. Because if the pH is off, the plants will have a hard time accessing the nutrients they need to grow.

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