Best Practices: Canna Nutrients for Plants and Soil

Sure you can grow your cannabis plants with strictly light and water. That method will work and you’ll get buds from it, but why not feed your plants viable nutrients to make the flowers even more potent? Canna nutrients are an important step and process when growing. These vital nutrients provide food for your plants allowing them to grow to their full potential. 

What are Canna Nutrients?

Canna nutrients are a variety of nutrients used to aid in the growth of a cannabis plant. There are macronutrients (main) and micronutrients (secondary). You will end up using much less micronutrients than macro, but that doesn’t make them any less essential. These nutrients provide the necessary food for your plants to grow into their full potential. With a solid nutrient regiment grows can expect to see high quality flowers produced come harvest time.

Why are Nutrients Important?

Cannabis nutrients are important for a number of reasons. First, nutrients help your cannabis plants survive through the growing process. However, more importantly they help your plants thrive and aid in producing the best quality flowers possible. Nutrients are important for your plant to grow successfully. 

Most grow op failures aren’t due to pests, in fact they are due to user error in nutrient dosage. Make sure to take extra care when giving your plants their nutrients for best results. If you give your plants too much this can be counterproductive and kill your plants. 

What will Nutrients Do for My Plants?

Nutrients will help your plants tremendously throughout the vegetative and flowering processes. They will supplement the growth of your plants as well as the potency of the flowers that it will produce come harvest time. The process of nutrient dosing is crucial to the success of a cannabis grow. 

If you want your plants to yield quality flowers and not something that looks like it was grown outside in the 60s and 70s nutrients are the way to go for your grow. The boost that your plants will get from the nutrients you mix and ph balance will be exponential rather than using nothing. 

What Kind of Plant Nutrients Do I Need?

There are two kinds of nutrients involved in growing cannabis flowers. The first kind are macronutrients, these are the main nutrients needed in the growing process. Nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) are the cornerstones of cannabis nutrients. This is why you will see an NPK ratio on most fertilizer products. A higher number means a higher concentration of each nutrient. 

Other macronutrients are calcium, magnesium, and sulfur. Calcium is important for cell wall growth. Also, it can help reduce the soils salinity allowing for improved water penetration. Magnesium plays a large role in photosynthesis and carbohydrate metabolism. Finally, sulfur is necessary for the making of chlorophyll, proteins, amino acids, enzymes, and vitamins. 

Micronutrients are used less than macronutrients, but they are still important in boosting growth in cannabis plants. These micronutrients are boron, chlorine, copper, iron, manganese, molybdenum, and zinc. These are not the main nutrients your plants will use for food, but they will help fine tune and make your results that much better. 

Veg vs Flower Nutrients

The amount of nutrients you use will change from the vegetative stages of cannabis growth to the flowering stages. You will want to adjust the amount of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium you use through each stage. 

In early veg you will want to use a Nitrogen Phosphorus Potassium (NPK) ratio of 4:2:3. After about 6 weeks you will want to bump it up to 10:5:7. The higher levels of nitrogen will help the foliage develop further. At the end of the veg stage it is best to lower your nitrogen levels to 7:7:7 to prepare for flowering. 

During the flowering stage of growing cannabis you will always want to use less nitrogen and more potassium. During early flower you will want to use an NPK ratio of 5:7:10. Once you reach the middle of the flowering stage you will want to bump everything up to a ratio of 6:10:15. Towards the end of flowering you will want to dial back on the nutrients to a ratio of 4:7:10 to prepare for a pH balanced flush. 

How to Mix and Administer Nutrients

Step 1: Prepare water for nutrients, if possible raise water temperature to 22 degrees celsius to maximize root absorption. 

Step 2: Add the nutrients according to the instructions on your fertilizer. Use a ppm meter for an exact reading. 

Step 3: If necessary adjust the ph levels by using a nitric or phosphoric acid pH down supplement. 

Step 4: Once you PPM, pH, and water temperature are good begin to water plants. Use a PPM meter to measure runoff to make sure plants are absorbing nutrients properly. 

Nutrient Tips and Tricks

  1. Use distilled water for plants 
  2. Check pH before and after adding nutrients 
  3. Signs of overfeeding are dry, burnt-looking leaves with yellow or brown discoloration, burnt edges, and upward bent tips.
    1. Overfeeding needs to be treated immediately with a root flush, pH stabilization, and a new feeding schedule
  4. pH imbalances can dramatically impact the health of your plant and cause many other issues, such as nutrient lockout, deficiencies, and more
  5. Nutrient burn is usually caused by overfeeding or nutrient buildup in the grow medium.
    1. Plants develop dark green leaves with almost neon green tips that bend upwards almost 90°, and deep red, magenta, or purple stems or branches.
    2. Flowering plants develop yellow calyxes and sugar leaves before dying back rapidly
    3. Typically treated by flushing roots with pH-neutral water for at least one week before gradually reintroducing the fertiliser.
  6. Deficiencies in nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, or secondary nutrients can cause symptoms like dry foliage, yellow or brown leaves, and discoloured stems.
    1. Nutrient deficiencies are treated by increasing/introducing more nutrients, or by first remedying nutrient lockout