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Cheap alternatives to overpriced hydroponic nutrients

Discussion in 'Nutrients and Fertilizers' started by Chronic Monster, May 24, 2011.

  1. thanks for the update Skywalker!!!!!
  2. edit: Figured out the formula will post.
  3. baller math :giggle
  4. hoot hoot! so would you run a pk booster with ths jacks formula?
  5. quick answer no, I'll post up the crazy NPK for you. I used MOAB as my example.

    If you did use jacks you would have to really thin it down. I'll try running some numbers with jacks at 1ML to see if the numbers get closer.
  6. ? so jacks was your control and your experiment was MOAB? very interested
  7. With Moab at 1 gram you get the following PPMs per 1 gallon.

    N - 3
    P - 60
    K - 70

    With Jacks at 3g and the cal nitrate at 2g you get the following:

    Jacks 3.0g/ Cal 2.0g per gallon
    N - 142
    P- 41
    K - 171
    MG -50
    S- 65
    C - 122

    Our Goal is to achieve:

    N 120-150
    p 40-60
    K 180-240
    Mg 60-80
    S 40-60
    Ca 100-140

    So adding 1g of MOAB on top of jacks would result in the following:

    N - 145
    P- 101
    K - 241
    MG -50
    S- 65
    C - 122

    So at most if you run jacks I would add at most .5g of MOAB or the likes.

    I think the sweet spot is Jacks at 3.0g & Cal at 2g

    N -122
    P- 48
    K - 200
    MG -58
    S- 76
    C- 128
    Nugteq, maxwell murder and oscar169 like this.
  8. motherlode

    motherlode Moderator

    moab is dry - how do you measure it in ML?
  9. I was wondering the same thing.
  10. So is Jack's. I don't get what he means either. Also, I don't understand how increasing the amount of Jack's slightly would result in N dropping from 142 to 122.
  11. Just noticed with the calculator supposed to use grams for powder. So the calculations I provided are probably invalid.

    With the powder are you supposed to use a scale? I was thinking you could just measure out 1ML of powder *doh.

    Back to the drawing boards, and to find a scale.
  12. motherlode

    motherlode Moderator

    hmmm I measure it by the teaspoon
  13. Snowblind

    Snowblind Alien Tech Avenger Supporter


    This is the main thread that helped me to start to understand some of this stuff about ppm and ratios and profiles. There are some smart people posting some great info on this thread...take a look and read it all....better than any book. It is a very long thread and in time the talk turns a lot to the use of Jacks Hydroponic. So much info on flushing and ppm and calculating nutes is to be found. One of the best threads on the internet for sure!

    Ok this is the Fert I am talking about....

    Scroll down from this link to this product.....

    Jack’s Professional 5-12-26 Hydroponic
    You also buy the Calcium Nitrate.....

    Even though if you call them they wont admit it, this shit is fucking for growing our medicine!

    Buy the 25 pound bags.............

    1ml of water = 1 g.....

    A full dose of Jacks is 3.7 grams of powder per gallon of water. It has no dyes. Most people run it at 3.0 grams of Jacks powder per gallon of water and the Calicium Nitrate most people add from 1.8 to 2.0 grams per gallon of water.

    Jacks is weighed out in powder form in grams, then mixed into water. Pretty simple. Dont waste your money on any liquid fert! You are being scammed, slapped silly in the pocketbook, kept in the dark from vital, yet simple information on the most basic of plant nutrition.

    Phosphorus and Calcium dont mix well together thats why formulas are split into a couple of parts that you mix seperate with water then combine. There are precpitation problems from C and sulfates.


    1) a solution with all the Calcium
    2) a seperate solution containing all the phosphates and sulfates.... mix the Jacks, which contains P, with some water and dump that into the reso, and then you add epsom salts mixed with water into the reso..then you add the calcium nitrate containing the calcium...the reso is diluted with the P and S so the the resulting addition of the calcium nitrate creates no precipitation problems....

    Flocculation is the result of adding Calcium Nitrate into a glass, then adding an equal amount of of epsom salt ie magnesium sulfate...soon you will see cloudiness as the calcium and Sulfate join hands in the process of droping out of the solution. This flocculant forming is calcium sulfate and soon it will drop to the bottom the glass. Before long you have created 97% insoluble CaSO4 (Gypsum) and guess what this is not available to your plants......Jim MCCaskill.........Plant Nutrient Facts For Hydroponics...

    My PK boost is simply to adjust the ratio of the Jacks Hydroponic to the amount of Calciumn Nitrate like Skywalker suggested. Meaning I mix a batch one week with 4 grams or a full 3.7 grams of jacks while keeping the Calcium Nitrate at the same 1.8 to 2.0 range.I also add epsom salts for added Mg. Usually at the rate of 1g per gallon for my Mg hungry plants.

    This is an important thread containing lots of information. Ive used Jacks for many grows and the results are incredible in the finnished product.

    I dont use additives or boosters. I feed only Jacks Hydroponic with added Calcium nitrate. I dont feel that they are needed ever! I could be wrong though.........

    KoolBloom for example is just Magnesium Sulfate, Ammonium Phosphate and Sulfate. They sell it to you for so much money! I dont feel that your plants need this stuff! Their plate is already full from the nutes that I give them as a balanced diet. I dont ever let the P get to high in flower! Phosphate is not needed to the degree people blast their plants with it!

    Anyone else agree with with my opinion concerning P?

    Plants dont appear to need or want a big boost of P in flower. They need a little added N and K and a touch of added P over veg.....check out the bar graphs...cannabis wants K at a 4 to 1 ratio over P in flower! You dont need all that Phosphate!

    More on Jacks Hydro formula....

    Our researchers at J.R. Peters have a formulated a 2-step fertilization system specifically for hydroponic applications, that will supply the ideal nutrient levels to your plants. These fertilizer products are available in our commercial line called Jack’s Professional. Using a combination of Jack’s Professional Hydroponic 5-12-26 and Jack’s Professional Calcium Nitrate 15.5-0-0, this
    system can be easily customized to fit your operation, whether you grow 2 or 20,000 hydroponic plants. These specialized products are available directly through the J.R. Peters Laboratory. Check out our website

    Ok what plants are they talking about? It turns out all plants follow a basic elemental need. See the link that i posted above and look at the graphes of the 3 different strains. Pot is not really different then any other plant. This Jacks Hydroponic formula seems to mimic plant tissue samples of cannabis although Peters will not admit this if you call them on the phone. Crop King also offers a formula that is very similer.

    This is the Jacks at 100% or 3.7 grams of dry pwoder per gallon of water, before the added Calcium Nitrate

    Total ppm
    Nitrogen (All Nitrate) N 50
    Phosphorus P 52
    Potassium K 215
    Magnesium Mg 63
    Sulfur S 82
    Iron Fe 3
    Manganese Mn 0.50
    Zinc Zn 0.15
    Copper Cu 0.15
    Boron B 0.50
    Molybdenum Mo 0.10

    After the added CaNo3 the N is boosted to N: 150 ppm,
    and Calcium as Ca: 116 ppm Ca so if you mix at 100% strength Jacks with 100% Calcium nitrate(2.44 grams per gallon) you have a formula of....

    Total ppm
    Nitrogen (All Nitrate) N 150
    Phosphorus P 52
    Potassium K 215
    Calcium C 116
    Magnesium Mg 63
    Sulfur S 82
    Iron Fe 3
    Manganese Mn 0.50
    Zinc Zn 0.15
    Copper Cu 0.15
    Boron B 0.50
    Molybdenum Mo 0.10

    This P and N is a little high.

    You add epson salt for added Mg for Mg hungry strains...and I run approx 75% strength of the above formula! 3.0 grams of Jacks and 1.8 of CaNo3. This is a 2.88-1-4.13 ratio of N-P-K.....

    This is the breakdown of 3.0 g per gallon of Jacks and 1.8 g per gallon of Calcium Nitrate.This combo is actually good to go and close to 75% strength(3.7 grams of Jacks per gallon is full strength). Sometimes when needed I add Nitric Acid for ph down which boosts the elemental ppm of the N a bit. I just made some ph down with sulphuric acid. I will start using that soon for a final flush, adding only a little S to the plants. Adding ph down from GH is phosphoric acid and will add P to the 3.0 jacks and 1.8 gives you approx...


    535 elemental ppm
    5.7 pH very strict
    3.0 g/gal Jacks Pro Hydro Special (A)
    1.8 g/gal CaN03 calcium nitrate (B)

    I like the Ca:N ratio of .8 and the N:p ratio of .66 and the K:p at 4.17 a great deal. Those are very close to what I want to shoot for...very close to modern analysis of cannabis tissue samples.

    ppm is kept very low at all times a very cool mix!!!......

    To quote a post that greatly influenced me.....these are not my words...

    Something else that perhaps bears mentioning, in an effort to cut through myth, bs and marketing hype... and I bring this up based on experiences of people who know more than I do, and for the fact that I have come to see the truth of it myself.

    I originally began using Liquid Kool Bloom because I had read ads and read that so many people were using bloom boosters. The plants need extra P and K, yada yada. I bought into it, before I had any clue what I was doing.

    But the truth is - no - you don't need any kind of booster. The bloom mix is all the girls need. All the way through the grow, to the very last day. Adding any kind of booster just skews the nutrient balance. If the plants do actually benefit at all, then they weren't getting the right mix in the first place.

    I messed with this one additional time a few months ago. Bad idea. Stalled the plants. Found the same thing if I started adding supplements to the topups. Water only now; just do the res changes frequently.

    I have come to view plant growth as surfing. If I can provide the right conditions for a cutting to root well and grow vigorously, that plant has "caught a wave". If I can keep her riding that wave right through to harvest, I will have a tree with a spectacular yield.

    If however, anything happens that causes the plant to crash off the wave, what I refer to as "stalling", it will take her awhile to find another wave, and she won't ride nearly as high, or as far. You end up cutting down a somewhat lame plant. Been there, done that, oh so many times.

    What has emerged in my observations is maintaining a consistent nutritional regimen. In other words, I run the same TDS in veg and bloom, I don't add supplements or additives, always the same strength mix, always replenished at a consistent interval. The plants seem to have come to expect that same pattern. Should I deviate, my yield will suffer. Even just postponing a res change for a day can impact the momentum of the plant, for lack of a better term. And adding supplements or boosting nute strength just throws everything out of whack.

    The plants really do tell us what's going on. I believe the strength of the experienced people who grow amazing plants is in knowing how to read what the plants are telling them, and knowing what to do. Me, I'm still just beginning to figure this out. Not knowing much of the science, I ride by the seat of my pants with observation and trial and error.
    DeepHydro, farmerjay, Nugteq and 12 others like this.
  14. "You must spread some reputation around before giving it to snowblind again" ;)
  15. Snowblind:

    Where are you sourcing the Nitric Acid?

    Do you recommend changing the formula during various stages of growth? Or can you run this from a clone that's just rooting to flower?

    Do you cut out the Cal-Nit after a certain week?

    Going to pick up some magnesium sulfate. What's a good number to start with?

    Thanks so much for all the information,
  16. Snowblind

    Snowblind Alien Tech Avenger Supporter

    PH down from Technaflora is nitric acid breaking down to a few ppm of N
    PH down from GH is Phosphoric Acid breaking down to a few ppm of P
    PH down from battery acid is Sulphuric acid whichs breaks down to S

    You can just dilute the formula to various ppm for say clones, veg or flower....

    I need to go to work but when I get home I will try to post more about the ratios I use. I veg under T-5 so the strength is diluted a little from flower. I use 4.24 grams of Jacks when I "PK" boost instead of the standard 3.0.

    Ill post more later.

    I add MGSo4 at the rate of 1/2 gram to 1 gram per gallon. It breaks down to added ppm of MG and S. Added S is not a bad thing and enhances aromas ie the smell of the plant.

    I fill the reso with water.
    I add Dutch Master Zone at the rate of 1ml per gallon
    I mix the jacks with some water in a little bucket and dump it in the reso.
    I mix the Epson salts with water in a little bucket and dump it in the reso.
    I mix the Calcium Nitrate up last with water in a little bucket and then dump it into the reso.
    I add ph down.......

    Calcium and phosphorus dont mix well together!
    bobbybullets and nMEEKS like this.
  17. Thanks for the info SB. How much epsom salt do you add to the 3g JPH and 1.8g CaNit?
  18. Snowblind

    Snowblind Alien Tech Avenger Supporter

    Some strains are not Mg hungry.

    Some strains do however need Mg, like StarDawg. OMG it needs Mg. I often use 1 gram of epsom per gallon. Mix in a little warm water for best results....... I cant remember the exact ppm of Mg in 1 gram of Epsom.
  19. sealed138

    sealed138 First Starfighter Supporter

    have you guys used an MP mixer or is anyone using grow more dry dutes
  20. Had a friend bring over a scale.

    1ML of Uncle Jacks Hydro formula is 1.6 Grams.
    1ML of Uncle Jacks Cal Nitrate is 1.5 Grams.

    So with that in mind how does this nutrient profile look?

    Uncle Jacks Hydro at 2.5ML or 4 Grams.
    Uncle Jacks Cal Nitrate at 1.5ML or 2.25 Grams.

    N - 52.5
    P - 55.0
    K - 227.5
    MG - 67.5
    S - 87.5
    C - 0

    Cal Nitrate
    N - 92
    C - 107


    N - 144.0
    P - 55.0
    K - 227.5
    MG - 67.5
    S - 87.5
    C - 106.5
    bobbybullets likes this.