Test Media pH And EC With The 2:1 Technique, Pour-Through Method And Saturated Media Extract Method. The chemical properties of the media, such as pH and electrical conductivity (EC), have the biggest effect on nutrient availability or you can measure it yourself with an . EC Meter . Testing labs can provide growers with media pH and EC, as well as water alkalinity readings. Growers can also purchase meters in order to perform on-demand testing on their own. Fertilizer and/or acid-injection programs are then based on the information learned from these tests. Alkalinity is the key parameter in understanding what your water will do to your media pH over time. Alkalinity is a measure of the buffering capacity of water to neutralize acids. Buffering is an indication of how resistant water is to pH change. The higher the alkalinity, the more upward pressure the water will put on media pH, all other factors being equal. Ideally, alkalinity for container-grown crops falls in the range of 80 to 120 ppm, while plug producers generally are looking for values of 50 to 80 ppm. Water quality should be tested at least once per year.
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