Foliar feeding can be incredibly beneficial for your plants. Plants like tomatoes and Cannabis require regular spraying or misting. Plants can and will absorb nutrients from their leaves with a nutrient solution mixture.
Foliar feeding provides a rapid boost to your plants; producing larger, better, and stronger harvests. Keep in mind that foliar spraying can’t replace a standard root feeding regimen. Root feeding is essential for growing and flowering but with the help of foliar feeding, you would be able to provide a quick path for nutrients to be easily absorbed by your plants.
The Meaning of Foliar Feeding
Foliar feeding essentially means that you spray fertilizer straight onto the leaves. It provides nutrients via foliage rather than roots. Under foliar regime, nutrients are absorbed via plant’s stomata (microscopic openings situated in the middle of two guard cells.) Regular spraying also provides clean and open stomata for your plant. Alterations in water content around the guard and other secondary cells force the stomata to open and shut as a basic response to water status changes.
Tomatoes and Cannabis plants continue with the process of photosynthesis by mixing together a number of different ingredients in their leaves. By simply looking at the plant’s leaves, you can have an insight into how they can create food.
Visual appreciation of a plant’s Stoma:
5 times more effective
Foliar feeding comes with several advantages. Fertilizers that are applied via foliar feeding are usually 3 to 5 times more effective than standard root fertilizers. Foliar feeding can also mitigate any stress that plants feel because of their nutrition. Nutrients from foliar sprays also make elements like iron more accessible to your plants when they would not otherwise be available in the soil, water, or hydroponic solution.
These are the nutrients that can give your plants what it needs to achieve incredible results:
Corrects nutrients deficiencies almost immediately
Clearly, foliar spraying is great for correcting nutrient deficiencies because of how fast absorption occurs through the leaves. The results will be almost immediate. The ideal time for foliar spraying is the early morning if you’re growing outside and whenever the light turns on if you’re growing inside. The stomata are open when the light is on them. It should be noted, however, that a temperature of 80 degrees or more will make the spray less effective because many of the stomata will be closed.
Benefits in clones and young plants
Clones, young plants, seedlings, and every tomato or marijuana plant in vegetative stage will experience extreme benefits with foliar feeding. This is because clones aren’t rooted, they require foliar feeding as a means to develop roots and avoid yellow discoloration (a frequent problem for cloners).
When a Cannabis plant or a tomato plant enters flowering stage, it is advised that you stop foliar feeding. In case of Marijuana, the plant will naturally secrete a resin for insulation when the environment is hot and dry. This keeps the plant cool. If you use foliar feeding during flowering, then it’s important to decrease the temperature of the plants to avoid mixing fertilizer with the resin.
Foliar feeding is only recommended from vegetative state until about one week into flowering. You also don’t want your plants to have any residual nutrients on the surface when you harvest. It will result in a heavy, nutrient-infested smoke.
What kind of nutrients should I use for foliar feeding?
Any fertilizer that is created for soil or hydroponic systems is perfect for foliar sprays. I would recommend Complete Hydroponics and Complete Gardening which are a perfect combination for veg and flowering stages. Foliar feeding is ideal with mist-style sprayers because small particles will result in a better response from your plants. You will also have to use less fertilizer to achieve the exact same result.