Diy nutrients

Ctv2January 29, 2013

I was wondering if anyone on this board makes their own nutrients?

I'm raising a pair of tomatoes in a low pressure aero unit I put together. Right now I'm just using a little one part nutrient mix from botanicare. So far I'm getting good results but I noticed that it's lacking any micro nutrients. A lot of commercial nutrient lines seem to be more fluff and empty promisses while asking a premium.

So does anyone know any good resources to help learn how To make my own mutrients? I'm not afraid of a steep learning curve. But my google results are sparce except for a few pot websites. They help but they are also sparadic, disorginized, and prone to infighting. To clarify I know that compost tea is a good option. But i'm planning on growing a variety of plants in the future and I want to tailer the mix to each type of plants needs.

Thank you for your time. Sorry for any spelling mistakes.

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grizzman

well if you're determined to go with "organic" fertilizers, you don't have a lot of options.
Otherwise, there is a company called southernAG.com that sells a soluble hydroponic solution that I use. you have to combine it with greenhouse grade calcium nitrate (water soluble) and epsom salts. It'll still leave the iron and boron a bit short, but it works for me.
you'll want to search this forum for danielfp. he has a blog (that used to be linked to from here) that shows how to calculate ppm. he also offers the hydrobuddy software to do it for you.
I'm not at the correct computer right now, but I will try to post some links I have to various recipes tomorrow or the next day.
Most of the chemicals you need can be bought at southern states or at a landscape supply company. That is where I bought what I have. Well, the epsom salts came from target.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2013 at 8:57PM
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ray4852

its not worth your time and money to try and make your own nutrients. you will pay more. you can save by buying your own calcium. The cheapest price I have found on nutrients is right here. 6-12-28 25lb bag. its excellent for all garden plants. hydrostacker is good too.

http://vertigro.com/products/fertilizers.php.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2013 at 10:55PM
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cole_robbie(6)

its not worth your time and money to try and make your own nutrients. you will pay more.

I agree. It's the economics of scale. For typical chemical nutes, one would have to be buying minors in 50-gallon drums and N/P/K in 500 gallon quantities before it was cost-effective.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 12:10AM
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sdgrower

I make my own. Hydroponic Food Production, Howard M. Resh, chapter 3.
It may be more cost effective to start with a premix from southern Ag, or hydrogardens and modify it by adding calcium nitrate, Epsom salts, iron chelate and even potassium nitrate or potassium sulfate to get to a desired formula as grizzman suggested. Then you won't have to mix up micronutrients which are usually sold at a 5lb minimum which would take forever to use and are not the cheapest. If you do make your own you will need a digital scale to measure the micros out that is accurate to at least a hundreth of a gram. Good luck.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 2:29AM
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grizzman

Oh! I wanted to point out that if you're just wanting to boost micronutrients, invest in some fertilizer for african violets. It is loaded with micronutrients. You'll just have to work out how much to add to ensure you meet at least the minimum you need.
As promised:
This site offers good instructions and a generic foumula.
This link takes you to danielfp's hydrobuddy website. you can also cruise his various blogs for how to calculate ppm and other neat stuff.
the pdf from this site offers a good introduction and some direction on ppm's from different sources.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 10:40AM
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Ctv2

Thank you for the info grizzman and sdgrower, after I finish studying for my botany class I will be sure to check out the links.

I'm not to worried about buying anything in bulk as long as I'm going to use it and it doesn't expire. Right now I just have the two tomatoes for proof of concept and as my botany project. But down the road if the conditions are right, I want to start a commercial greenhouse. If nothing else my friends and I will use it since we're all planing personal greenhouses.

Thanks guys.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 3:19PM
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ratherbboating(6)

I use the southernag hydro solution. I also add potash, cal nitrate and Epson salt. I made my own spreadsheet on how much to add to what kind of plant. The only thing I have problems with is my well water (I filter it,but..) have to use a lot of phdown to get my ph in range.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 4:43PM
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