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Ask-a-Grower Podcast #10-House & Garden Nutrients Soil A&B


Introducing Soil A&B:

We are sitting here this morning at San Diego Hydroponics, talking about House & Garden products, talking about Soil A & B now.   Soil A / B is a base nutrient, this one contains lime.  The soil A & B has lime in it, as opposed to the One Component Soil that product that contains no lime. So this can be used in all soil-less mediums, different potting soils, anything like that.

Soil A & B is a really clean formula, it has no clumping agents in it.  It is an A & B two part formula again, that has it’s calcium in it for somebody who is using a calcium free or neutral soil. It actually works great with soils that already has calcium in it, so it starts out fine and add the calcium during the flower the whole time,  so its a wonderful product.

With Soil A & B, as with all two parts that House & Garden has, you use equal parts of both, and never mixing them together in concentrate. Always adding one into the reservoir into your mixing container, and then the other.

So yeah, you mix A in, stir it up real well, and make sure its dissolved. We recommend 15 stand time. Then add your B. at this point its even good that you adjust your PH at this time, this kinda guarantees that any additives that may have life or any enzymes in them or added to a very safe environment. So mix A, stir well, mix B, then PH, then add additives.

Q: Would I PH after I add my additives also?

So what happens with all the additives from House & Garden, they all contain microbial life, enzymes, bacteria, and those are stored in a very acidic solution.  So when you add this to your mix its gonna naturally fluctuate the PH to go down, and then you give it a few hours, and its gonna naturally come back up.  So the process for using H&G nutrients to fill your reservoir full of fresh water, add the A component, mix thoroughly, let it stand for about 15 minutes, add the B component, mix thoroughly and let stand for 15 minutes, then check the PH. Adjust it to where you want it to be. Then add the stimulants. What’s gonna happen now is you’re going to have the natural fluctuation down, then it’s gonna rise back up, and its gonna be where it needs to be over the course of a few hours. I would not worry about the PH after you add the stimulants.

If the next day the PH continues to fluctuate, of course continue to monitor your PH, you do not want your fluctuations to get too far out of range.

Q: Since we are talking about Soil A & B, I mix up my water and use it right away, would I wait those couple hours to let the PH fluctuate back up, or just water then and there?

I would wait and let the PH fluctuate back up, you’re not gonna wanna water with the low 5 water. You’re gonna wanna let that to come back up. So optimum PH ranges for the House & Garden nutrient line is 5.8 to 6.5  in hydroponics, and 6 to 6.5 on soil. Obviously coming out of these ranges is less than optimal, not necessarily detrimental.

Q: What makes House & Garden Soil A & B superior to other soil nutrient lines?

I would have to say it’s the quality of the raw materials. And it’s the composition as well. The NPK ratio is just a really perfect ratio for soil mixes.  And the quality of the raw material before it goes in….everything that House & Garden does they keep samples of, they test to ensure quality and consistency. Their nutrient facility is completely computer automated. And just basically ensures a consistent product time and time again.

Q: Why do I continue to use both products, even during the flowering stage when they have higher levels of nitrogen?

This is a great formula for aggressive growing of varieties. It will actually give you the most. Also the two part formula gives you a balance, you can actually lower the nitrogen a bit if you feel fit for your variety. In general the two part is a great formula all the way through, it just depends on your variety.

You know another thing, our A / B  formula is just a base nutrient. You start to dictate the different stages of the growing period through the stimulants. When we move into flowering we start adding different products like Bud Excel, Top Booster and Shooting Powder. Top Booster and Shooting Powder have no nitrogen at all so once those are added on top of the base nutrient, you get a much different NPK ratio with a lot higher phosphorous and potassium.

Q: How about for beginners? Is the feeding schedule and using the House & Garden Soil A / B, is it easy compared to other nutrient lines? Is it something that a newbie could just step into?

With the feeding chart that House & Garden has to offer, it’s a great basis for success.

The House & Garden chart is actually a great chart for beginners and experts alike. It gives you the great basis for starting your garden out, so you can get to know your variety, and adjust it as need be. We have a normal and aggressive strength. We have strengths for shorter or longer vegetative crops, also for shorter and longer flowering stages.  Throughout these stages the plant needs different things at different times. The larger the plant the more food it may need. If it becomes ill or sick,  or a weak genetic, you may find you need less food to add to the plant. This chart is a wonderful guideline. When using it with our Soil A & B, Component One, our Coco, our Aqua, or our Hydro, it’s gonna give you a great success to start with and a product you’re gonna be extremely pleased with.

Q: What in the world makes these wonderful House & Garden Vanderzwan nutrients and additives take such good control of the PH in our water that you don’t have to add anything to balance it?

When a scientist usually develops his formula, he is gonna use different types of products. All  these products have different PH levels, so as they formulate their line they balance these PH levels with the different minerals and vitamins and nutrients they have. So usually when a scientist is completed with his line it stays very PH balanced. Usually there only time there is very big issues is when a someone begins to add another companies products and you start to see major PH fluctuations.

So for the most part, you are still going to have to do an initial PH adjustment, but once your PH is stable, if the system is stable, House & Garden is stable.

Q: I’ve noticed that the base nutrients are a little more expensive than other nutrient lines. Can you speak to that a little bit?

The base nutrients are actually not as expensive as some others.  If you look at the amount you get, and it’s when you  buy one bottle you get the B free, or its a package deal, it’s sold as one,  so you are actually getting both bottles for the one price.  As far as the stimulants and additives are concerned, they tend to be more expensive per say milliliter or per ounce, but they have a way higher concentration, so you end getting way more per gallon or more per dosage.

The relationship that the Vanderzwan family has with the House & Garden company in Holland, they have a longtime relationship with their mineral companies. And it assures them not only a good product to start with, they also have the facilities and the laboratories to take the product and break it down completely to a usable form to the plant, something that the plant can immediately take up right away. But again, there a a lot of costs involved in this, but here is a product that is not only clean and extremely available to the plant, but that is the reason we are allowed to make it more concentrated. We don’t have excess junk in there that is unneeded by the plants.

One thought on “Ask-a-Grower Podcast #10-House & Garden Nutrients Soil A&B

  • Hello SD Hydro,

    I just wanted to let you know that Soil A/B does not contain lime. Soil A/B contains calcium where the One Component base nutrients do not. Gardeners can use lime as a calcium source to be added to soil. Peace!

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