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Harnessing The Benefits Of Humic And Fulvic Acid For Crops

The makeup of your soil or grow solution plays a critical role in your crop’s health and development. In nature, crops grow according to the chemical composition of the ground where their seeds happen to fall. Sometimes, this means growing in a fertile, lush environment that promotes optimal development for the plant. Other times, it means a shorter lifespan, fewer flowers or seeds, or lower quality vegetation because the soil is devoid of nutrients.

When you grow crops, you must have total control over their environment. Your crops aren’t subject to the natural soil composition determined by years of geological and weather events. Rather, they’re in a highly controlled, optimized environment designed to push them to their full potential. Maximize your crop’s potential by learning how to use humic and fulvic acid.

In this article, you’re going to learn:

  • How humic acid fertilizer works.
  • The benefits of humic acid for crops.
  • How to use humic and fulvic acid for crops.
  • Crucial facts you need to know about leonardite.

The world of organic humate products is a large one, and we want to equip our growers with the right information to navigate with confidence.

Humates, Humic Acids And Fulvic Acids

In order to understand the role of humic acid in plant growth, it’s important that you understand a few important terms:

  • Humus: The organic component of soil, created when microorganisms eat through decaying leaves and other plant materials. This process is known as humification.
  • Humates: Naturally occurring materials that are rich in humic substances, the primary organic components of coal, soil and peat.
  • Humic substances: The main organic component of soil, contains humic acids, fulvic acids and humins.
  • Humic acids: Complex acids that contain groups of ions arranged to enable chelate complexes. Chelate complexes enable humic acids to regulate the bioavailability of metal ions present in a plant’s grow environment. Humic acids are water-soluble in water with a pH higher than two. They are dark brown to black in color.
  • Fulvic acids: A type of humic acid with a low molecular weight and oxygen content. Water-soluble, regardless of the water’s pH level. Fulvic acids are fairly light in color, from yellow to a light brown.
  • Humins: Not water-soluble, black in color.
  • Chelates: Chemical compounds that crops absorb easily and dissolve more easily than other types of compounds. Chelates are characterized by their ability to retain and release specific metal ions.
  • Chelation: The process through which ions and molecules bond to metal ions. In crops, chelation makes it possible for nutrients to move within plant bodies more freely, making them more available to the crops.
  • Bioavailability: The amount of a nutrient that’s absorbed by a plant.

The Role Of Humic Acid In Plant Growth

For crops, humic and fulvic acids are chelators. They combine minerals to make them into organic compounds that can be ingested by plants more easily. They also enable the soil to hold more water and can increase the water infiltration of the soil. Additionally, humic and fulvic acids restrict toxins present in the soil, reducing the amount of harmful substances that reach the crop’s roots.

Humates come from a variety of sources, such as shale, coal and mudstone. Different sources and processing procedures yield widely varied humate fertilizer products.

Could I Use Leonardite Coal To Provide Organic Humic Acid?

You’ve probably heard about extracting humates from leonardite, a common source of humates and the source we use to produce OG Organics™ Ancient Earth®.

Leonardite is a mineraloid that can easily be dissolved in alkaline solutions, which makes it easy to use in hydroponic growing. It developed over millions of years from decaying organic material like animal, plant and microorganism remains found in saltwater deposits. Today, it’s derived from lignite, a type of soft coal, through the process of oxidation and extracted in mines close to the ground’s surface.

Leonardite is not a uniform product. Although it is always 100 percent organic, its composition can vary widely. Sometimes, it’s as much as 90 percent humic acid. It can also contain as little as 10 percent humic acid, and when it does, it can contain high concentrations of ash or heavy metals. This is why it’s so important to your crop’s health that you choose a leonardite product that clearly lists its acid breakdown.

We recommend Ancient Earth Organic OIM to give your crops full access to all the nutrients in their growing environment. In fact, we’re so confident it will improve your garden that we offer a 100 percent money-back guarantee to any grower who’s less than satisfied. Unlike many other leonardite products on the market, Ancient Earth Organic OIM is certified by the California Department of Food and Agriculture’s Organic Input Material Program (OIM).

How To Use Humic Acid For Crops

Humic acid comes in a few different forms. You can apply dry humic acid powder to your soil, or you can dissolve it in water and deliver it to your crops through watering. You can also purchase liquid humic acid, dilute it, then deliver it to your crops via watering.

Using Organic Fulvic Acid To Grow Better Crops

There are many benefits to using humic substances in your garden. Their primary asset is how they naturally facilitate your crop’s absorption and use of nutrients. Fulvic acids are natural chelates. When you introduce the micronutrients your crops need into their environment, the fulvic acids form bonds to protect them from reacting with other ions in the plant’s environment and potentially being overpowered by them. Bonded to the chelate, the nutrients can travel up the plant’s roots into its tissue, where the chelator can release them.

Chelation makes otherwise insoluble nutrients soluble, increasing their bioavailability to crops. In addition to making more nutrients available to your crops, humates promote root growth. More roots mean more avenues for nutrient absorption for your crops, and within those avenues, chelators carry and protect the building blocks for healthy, hardy crops.

Fulvic acid doesn’t change anything about your crops. Rather, it enhances the crop’s natural processes. Fulvic acid organic gardening is an effective way to increase plant strength and crop yields without using synthetic compounds.

Ancient Earth Organic OIM was not designed to be used alone. Your crops should always have the base nutrient formula created for your grow environment, whether that’s soil, hydroponics or coco coir. You should also be using a fertilizer meant for the type of growing you do. Add Ancient Earth to your grow system to increase your crop’s root efficiency and aeration so plants are able to grow healthier and stronger from increased nutrient absorption ability.

Use Humic And Fulvic Acid For Crops To Help Them Reach Their True Genetic Potential

As a conscientious cultivator, you should be paying close attention to what’s happening in your garden at the chemical level. This is where great crops become even better crops. Enhancing your garden with humates doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive — when you use OG Organics™ Ancient Earth®, all you have to do is follow our recommended feed chart to guarantee stronger, healthier crops.


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The Advanced Nutrients Team

Since 1999, Advanced Nutrients has been committed to educating the community and bringing the most up-to-date knowledge to the forefront of grows across the globe. Every article you read here has been curated by Advanced Nutrients’ industry experts, so you can continue raising your bud weight… and your reputation.

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Over time, components within the nutrients settle on the bottom of the bottle. When you pour a bottle without shaking it, you can potentially be pouring out an unbalanced solution. Shaking up the nutrient bottle ensures you are pouring the right blend into your reservoir, giving your crops the nutrition they need.

Usually, it’s not a problem. But some products are incompatible with each other and can damage your plants when they’re used together. For example, bloom boosters with high PK numbers or low-grade silica products can destabilize your nutrient mix and cause nutrient lockout.

Nutrient manufacturers design their products to be used with each other. In doing so, they include specific portions of each nutrient in each product, so crops receive the right nutrition through each stage of the grow cycle. When you stick with one manufacturer, you don’t have to worry about inadvertently destabilizing your nutrient mixture. One example of why you need to stick with only one manufacturer’s products is Advanced Nutrients’ pH Perfect line. These products are designed to keep your crops’ root zone within a specific pH range. When you use them alongside products from another manufacturer, we can’t guarantee your root zone will maintain its optimal pH level.

Yes! If you’re growing with Advanced Nutrients products, you can use our easy nutrient calculator to generate the correct nutrient chart for your crops in seconds. Check out Advanced Nutrients’ nutrient calculator here. Another great resource is our library of free custom-growing recipes. Try our expert grower-tested nutrient schedules here.

You can also download our official BudLabs app to generate nutrient schedules and receive real-time notifications for specific tasks, including feeding your crops. Upgrade to BudLabs Pro to maintain profiles on an unlimited number of crops.

If you are a grower, visit this link to find the closest Advanced Nutrients Authorized Retailer. If you are a retailer, visit this link to identify our official distributors.

Our greatest passion is growing great cannabis—and helping other growers do the same. That’s why we offer complimentary cultivation support 24/7 from Monday to Friday and from 9 AM until 7 PM PST on Saturday… With the same level of advice licensed producers would pay consultants tens of thousands of dollars to unlock.
Just call 1-800-640-9605 or email support@advancednutrients.com. For Spanish-speaking growers, email spanishsupport@advancednutrients.com.

Yes! If for any reason you are not absolutely thrilled with the results you achieve when you use our products, just bring the unused portion, along with your original sales receipt, back to the place of purchase within six months, and ask for your money back. Find out more about our Grower Guarantee here.

Advanced Nutrients has spent many thousands of man-hours developing a technology that automatically balances your pH for you — putting it in the “sweet spot” and holding it there for one week.

And the technology is so “smart” that it can account for many of the aforementioned variables in your grow room. Our proprietary pH buffering agents and stabilizing mechanisms became the foundation of a new system aptly called pH Perfect® Technology. Learn all about it here.

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