Frequently Asked Questions

Recipe for Success

Q: What makes the Recipe for Success (RFS) so successful?

 

A: The RFS is comprised of 10 exceptional nutrients and supplements along with the easy to use Recipe for Success Mixing Chart to meet your gardening needs whether you grow hydroponically, in soil or soilless mediums.

The RFS works on a stage to stage plant cycle formula rather than week to week, eliminated the guess work for you. From the cutting stage through to the pre harvest stage the RFS shows you how to mix your nutrients successfully and with ease.

B.C. Hydroponic Nutrients and Soil Application

Q: Can BC Nutrients be used in conjunction with soil?

 

A: All the nutrients and supplement in the Recipe For Success can be used in soil mediums with fantastic results. The difference is the frequency of use. In hydroponics, the Recipe would be fed to the root zone of the plants during every irrigation cycle. However, with soil based mediums the frequency of use needs to be reduced in order to avoid a build up of salts in the soil that would no doubt occur with continued use.

Many users employ the "Rule of Thirds" when using our Recipe in soil mediums. This is to say that the full strength Recipe for any given stage of growth is fed to the plants at every 3rd irrigation (Fertilizer, Water Water). To be sure that excess salts are not building up in your soil, checking both the PPM and the pH of your runoff (liquid that escapes the bottom of your planting container after irrigation) is a good idea.

Also, be sure to flush stored nutrients out of your soil for about a week prior to harvest using only plain water.

Q: How dry should I let the soil get between irrigations to maximize nutrient use?

A: You should try to cycle the irrigation of your plants so that they go through a cycle of total saturation to near de-hydration. This is not to suggest that you should starve your plants for water, but rather that you should not be to eager to water them with great frequency.

Plants will benefit by having to "search" for water in their environment. New root development will be created as plants go seeking moisture and potential rot will be avoided by not keeping plants too moist.


The exact rhythm of your irrigation cycle will depend on many factors specific to your growing situation: Size of plant, size of container, type of medium in terms of water retention, room temperature and humidity etc.

Get to know your plants and their needs and find a rhythm that works for both you and your plants.
 
Q: How dry should the soil be before applying nutrients and water?
 
A: Sick your finger in the soil to the first knuckle. If the soil is dry to the finger tip then it’s time to feed or water.

PPM vs mS/uS

Q: What is the equivalent range of use of B.C Grow/Bloom in microsiemens or millisiemes?

0 to 1200 PPM is equivalent to:
0 to ??? mS or uS

 

A: Salinity is measured as electrical conductivity (EC). It is a relative measure of the total quantity of salts dissolved in the water. Pure water is a poor conductor, whereas saline water is a good conductor. EC is reported as deciSiemens per meter (dS/m), microSiemens per centimeter (uS/cm) or milliSiemens per centimeter (mS/cm). Crops vary in their sensitivity to salinity according to their kind, stage of growth, and container size. In general, mature plants are the most tolerant, while plant plugs are the most sensitive.


As for converting PPM to EC: In short, there is no direct conversion that will work across the board. A good frame of reference to go by is 700PPM = 1.0 EC, although this conversion will not hold true with all testing devices.

Changing water and nutrients in your reservoir

Q: How often should I change my water and add fresh nutrients to my reservoir?

 

A: It is our recommendation that your nutrient solution be changed once weekly. Flushing with plain water for 24 hrs every two weeks is also a good idea.

Q: Is there a general rule of thumb re: tank size and how often to replace the nutrient solution?

A: Regardless of the tank size, it is advisable to change your solution at least once per week. By doing this your plants will benefit from receiving a balanced nutrient solution for the greatest possible time. If you change your nutrient solution more often, than the benefit will be greater still.

Q: Is it safe to assume that if I switch to a 50 gallon or a 100 gallon tank that I could extend the useful life of the solution to 1 or 2 weeks, respectively?

A: Switching to a larger tank will enable you to go for longer periods of time (but still do not exceed one week) because the overall nutrient content will be greater to begin with (but the same in terms of ratio of one element to another).

Always add B.C Boost first

Q: Could you tell me the significance of the statement (always add B.C Boost first) on your recipe for success chart?

 

A: B.C Boost is always added to the water in your reservoir first because it contains high levels of both calcium and iron. These elements will bond with other elements contained in the B.C Grow and B.C Bloom if they are not diluted into the water first. So, mixing the concentrates together will spoil both products.

Foliar Feeding

Q: Can I foliar feed with my lights on?

 

A: We do not recommend foliar feeding while plants are exposed to light. This is the case to avoid rapid evaporation of water leaving behind a concentrated dose of nutrient that can burn your plants.

Topping up your reservoir

Q: What should I do when the water level drops in my reservoir?

 

A: As water levels drop due to evaporation, nutrients can concentrate in your reservoir and potentially raise your total dissolved solids. Always top up reservoir levels with fresh water.

About Hydroponics

Q: Define is hydroponics?

 

A: Hydroponics is a method of growing plants using mineral nutrients and supplements in water without soil.

Q: What are the various types of Hydroponic systems?

A: There are six types of hydroponic systems: Wicker, Water Culture, Ebb & Flow, Drip, NFT and Aeroponic.

Wicker System: The wicker system is known for its simplicity. It is referred to as a passive system which means there are no moving parts. The nutrient solution is drawn into the growing medium from the reservoir with a wick.

Water Culture System: The water culture system is a basic active hydroponic system which contains a floating platform that holds the plants directly on the nutrient solution. An air pump supplies air to the air stone that bubbles the nutrient solution and supplies oxygen to the roots of the plants.

Ebb & Flow Flood and Drain System: The Ebb and Flow is made up of a grow tray and a reservoir. The system works with a submerged pump connect to a timer that temporarily floods the grow tray with nutrient solution and then drains the solution back into the reservoir. As the timer turns the pump on the nutrient solution is pumped into the grow tray. Once the timer goes through its cycle the pump shuts off and the nutrient solution flows back into the reservoir. The timer is set to come on and off several times in a day depending on the size and type of plants, temperature and humidity and the type of growing medium used.

Drip System – Recovery & Non Recovery: The drip system is one of the most popular systems used. Similar to the Ebb & Flow system the drip system has both a grow tray and reservoir, and a timer which controls the submersed pump. Unlike the Ebb & Flow the nutrient solution is dripped into the base of each plant by a drip line. In a Recovery Drip System the excess nutrient solution that runs off is collected back in the reservoir for re-use. The Non-recover System does not collect the run off.

NFT – Nutrient Film Technique: The NFT is your typical type of hydroponic system. The system runs on a constant flow of nutrient solution rather than on a timer for the submersible pump. The plants are usually placed in plastic baskets in the grow tray allowing the roots to dangle in the solution. The solution is pumped into the grow tray and flows over the roots of the plants and then drains back into the reservoir.

Aeroponic: The aeropoinic system is one of the most sophisticated, high-tech systems. Aeroponic mists the roots with nutrient solution every few minutes. A timer controls the pump with a shorter cycle that runs the pump for a few seconds every couple of minutes.