Hydroponic weed is the method of growing weed such that each plant grows in a flow or bath of water that is heavily oxygenated and highly enriched with beneficial nutrients . No soil is used in this process, and instead, the plant grows in a sterile, inert growing medium.
All of the nutrients required for the weed to grow are mixed in a solution in the water in which the growth process takes place. This unique method of growing plants took birth over a century ago when it was created by William Frederick Gericke.
The word “hydroponics” is derived from Latin that literally translates to “water working”.
Growing Weed Using Hydroponics
The plants take in their required nutrition both from the water and the air, therefore, it’s necessary to maintain a perfect atmosphere in your hydroponic system.
Cannabis, or weed, has the ability to grow almost anywhere, be it under different climates or varying conditions. In fact, growing weed at home has a lot of pretty straightforward approaches, and one of the ways to do it is by using hydroponics.
As you can tell, growing hydroponically can get complicated and expensive. That’s why we recommend growing with natural soil, especially for beginners.
When bicarbonates or carbonates are in excess, they form insoluble complexes from magnesium and calcium, causing sodium to become the dominant ion in the water. This leads to a lack of available calcium and magnesium to the plant and interferes with water uptake by the roots. As the plant removes minerals from the solution and as moisture evaporates, those insoluble complexes can also accumulate in soil and clog irrigation equipment. High pH is also more likely to accumulate soluble salts in the growing medium, further interfering with nutrient uptake and causing unpredictable pH fluctuations.
Aside from pest management, water quality analysis is one of the most important preventative and diagnostic tools available to growers. Prior to using water for irrigation, obtain a detailed analysis from a qualified water testing lab to identify and correct any potential future problems. If plant health appears to be compromised, water quality should always be the first item to check off the troubleshooting list.
Table 2. Filtration Options
WATER QUALITY ANALYSIS
Although most horticulture research recommends a TDS below 640 ppm for best results, hydroponic and soilless cannabis cultivation tends to show higher sensitivity to pH fluctuation and salt buildup when TDS is above 200 ppm (500 scale) or 0.4 EC.
Water Source: Municipal vs. Private Well: All natural water sources will contain some levels of dissolved salts and trace minerals. The source of the irrigation water can drastically change the levels of salts and minerals found in water. Excessive amounts of mineral salts found in water can have a negative effect on plant health (see images) due to nutrient antagonism (Appendix B).
Untreated well water may contain high levels of fertilizer salts as a result of runoff, sediment, and calcium from water hardness. Municipal water sources may be treated with chlorine or chloramine to kill pathogens, but this can have a detrimental effect on plant health. This water source may also have high levels of sodium or potassium as a result of water softening agents used to reduce water hardness. Heavy metals occur naturally in the environment and can be found in private and municipal water sources. Many of these have the potential to accumulate to toxic levels in soil and plant tissues.
WATER QUALITY IMPROVEMENTS
Water quality is one of the most important factors affecting plant growth, as unwanted components in water can interfere with nutrient availability and uptake by the plant. When improving your grow operation, water should be one of the key areas evaluated. Even with a filter in place, problems may still arise if quality is not closely monitored. In this paper, we will discuss the steps you should take to evaluate your water, what issues might be present, factors affecting water quality and troubleshooting solutions.
Adjust Alkalinity: There are several acids available for horticultural use that are an effective tool to reduce alkalinity of irrigation water.