Cultivating cannabis is a rewarding journey, but sometimes something gets in the way of an abundant harvest. A common issue is calcium deficiency in cannabis plants, and the final yield suffers significantly if you don’t detect it fast. In this article, Plant-Prod share why calcium is crucial for crops and how to fix calcium deficiency in cannabis plants.
First, let’s talk about the need for calcium. Calcium is a vital nutrient to cannabis plants and is essential for optimal growth. This element plays a unique role in
- Maintaining the expansion and
- The structural integrity of cell walls
It also plays a central part in intracellular signaling. Plants such as cannabis that require a robust structure to support a large mass of vegetative and fruiting growth will have a higher demand for calcium. Due to this demand, calcium is required throughout most of the growing cycle, from the beginning of the vegetative phase through to the end of the flowering phase.
How to know if your cannabis plants have a calcium nutrient deficiency?
All plants require a calcium source. Whether it’s coming from your water source or your fertilizer program, calcium is an essential secondary nutrient. When it is lacking, there are some tell-tale signs that are specific to calcium:
- Low growth rate
- Variable patterns of chlorosis on young leaves
- Upward curling of leaves
- Browning/necrosis of apical meristems (growing points)
How to use Cal Kick cannabis fertilizer
Plant-Prod MJ Cal Kick cannabis fertilizer was created with a traditional high calcium NPK formulation in mind that was enhanced to meet the high demands of cannabis production. These enhancements include elevated levels of iron and the addition of a second chelating agent – EDDHA. Since this formulation contains nitrogen, potassium, and a complete micronutrient package, it is ideal for alternating or simultaneous feeding with other growth stage-specific formulations.
Plant-Prod MJ Cal Kick cannabis fertilizer has a unique formulation that allows for this feeding without the risk of micronutrient deficiencies. Programs that rely on calcium nitrate fertilizer in Tank A do not have this option, as the plants will be missing essential nutrients.
The micronutrient package allows for flexibility in feeding styles and ensures that at no point are micronutrients deficient. Feeding rates should be based on water analysis to avoid overfeeding calcium. For more information on the A-B system and why this formulation cannot be mixed with others, see our previous post here.
The source of calcium in Cal Kick is calcium nitrate. This relatively reactive salt compound is frequently used to buffer coco-growing media to replace potassium or sodium ions with calcium in cation exchange sites.
How to use Spike (CaMg) cannabis fertilizer
Plant-Prod MJ Spike (CaMg) was formulated to meet the needs of cannabis growers who desired to supplement calcium and magnesium without additional elements, such as nitrogen, sulfur, or chloride. Spike (CaMg) contains chelated calcium and chelated magnesium and nothing else.
It is intended to be used as a periodic supplemental source of calcium and magnesium in addition to the standard 5-product Plant-Prod MJ program. Due to the lack of NPK and micronutrients, this product cannot substitute Cal Kick.
The source of calcium in Spike (CaMg) is EDTA-chelated calcium. This metal complex is far less reactive to cation exchange sites than calcium nitrate and cannot be used in the same way to buffer coco media. The claw-like EDTA structure surrounding the calcium ion allows it to remain in solution and be more readily available for plant uptake.
Things to keep in mind when using Spike (CaMg) Cannabis Fertilizer
Plant-Prod MJ Spike (CaMg) is a unique product and should be used with the following in mind:
- Use only as a supplemental feed at the first sign of deficiency
- Curb feeding to no more than twice a week at low rates
- Refrain from tank mixing with other Plant-Prod MJ formulations
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