Updated: Oct 4, 2020
A recent study in Michigan indicates that cannabis grown hydroponically, with the use of fulvic acid as a mineral supplement, will yield about 21 percent more plant material without sacrificing the cannabinoid potency of the plants.
At the conclusion of a 12-week experiment conducted by AgTonik LLC with chemical analysis performed by PSI Labs, Ann Arbor, MI, the test group of cannabis plants were approximately 20 percent taller and larger, with tap roots nearly twice as long as the control group of cannabis plants. Ralf Ostertag, the primary researcher of the study and Chief Science Officer for AgTonik, reported that the “test plants likely did better because fulvic acid acts as a mechanism for transporting nutrients into plant cells at an accelerated rate.”
From a cost-benefit viewpoint, the addition of about $18 worth of fulvic acid yielded nearly 6 ounces more of cannabis plant material than the test group.
“We had a good hunch that fulvic acid would boost growth for cannabis,” Ostertag said. In other studies, “test plots of soybeans showed an increased yield of about 30 percent and winter wheat showed an increased yield of about 13 percent through the use of fulvic acid.
“But we weren’t certain if the same phenomena would show itself in hydroponically grown cannabis. It’s pretty clear now that it does.”
During a tightly controlled test concluded in August of last year, AgTonik planted 12 cannabis clones in Growstones GS-1 inert medium contained in two Oxygen Pot System 6-Site Digital XL Super-Flow arrays. All the plants were kept under the same temperature, lighting and humidity conditions. They also were fed the same reverse osmosis treated water and concentrations of Technaflora nutrients.
The six plants in the test group were additionally fed AgTonik’s MLG-50 fulvic acid supplement, while the six plants in the control group were not fed any additional supplement.
Researchers compiled data weekly on a number of key factors, including water consumption, plant height, girth and foliage.
“We could see a marked difference in the two groups after only three weeks,” Ostertag said. “The test group plants were consuming about twice as much water as the control group. They simply were growing faster and larger than the plants that didn’t get fulvic acid.”
Chemical analysis conducted by PSI Labs in Ann Arbor, MI, measured the concentrations of cannabinoid, terpene, and THC in samples taken from the two groups at 4-week, 8-week and 12-week periods.
“There weren’t any statistically significant differences between the cannabinoid and THC concentrations of the two groups at the conclusion of the test, but there was a statistically significant difference in total terpene content, with the test group showing about 13 percent higher concentration than the control group.” Ostertag said.
For the full lab report on the test, please contact AgTonik by writing the company at Questions@AgTonik.com or calling (269) 373-2930.