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LESSON FOUR

Meeting Plant Needs 4-4

Pest and Disease Control
(see Lesson 9 for more information)
Since there is no soil in hydroponics, many, but not all plant diseases are eliminated. Well kept and clean growing  environments are the best prevention when it comes to plant disease. Always remove dead or dying leaf matter and any unhealthy plants from your hydroponic garden.

If you are growing indoors, the chances of pest infestation are greatly reduced. In the event of pest problems, there are many biological controls available.

 Water-Soluble Minerals (Nutrients in Solution)
 (see Lesson 5 for more information)

As mentioned earlier, a hydroponic gardener uses minerals that are water soluble and ready to be taken up by the plant roots. Scientists and researchers have determined exactly what minerals a plant needs and in what quantities. A large number of hydroponic nutrient formulas have been developed and, although some have better results than others, there is no one perfect mixture. The success of each nutrient formula depends on the conditions it is used in and what plants are being grown.

Many hydroponic gardeners use a pre-mixed nutrient formula that they simply add water to. These formulas contain all the minerals and nutrients that a plant needs, in the correct proportions and are available in powder or liquid form.

 The macro nutrients a plant needs include:

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Nitrogen

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Phosphorous

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Calcium

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Potassium

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Sulfur

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Magnesium

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Iron

and the trace elements (used in minute quantities) a plant needs include:

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Manganese

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Boron

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Zinc

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Copper

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Molybdenum

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