Agarwood planting does not require Silicon, however as a grower if the interest expands to soilless media planting, following information will further enhance your knowledge.
Why You Should Use Silicon ??
Many benefits can be gained by using a good Silicon product in your feeding program. Increased tolerance of environmental stress, heat, cold, drought, water and soil toxicity or deficiency, improved growth rate both in the root zone and in the plant it foliage. By using Silicon with clones can increase the rate of roots kicked by as much as 80%. Silicon is a natural fungicide, it helps build the plants defense from attacks by insects, fungi. Silicon helps the plant growth by depositing it self epidermal cell walls, enhancing the plant’s ability to keep the leaves pointed towards the light source. It also increases the stem strength, making it easier to hold up more weight. As the plant builds it self up with Silicon, it helps with balancing nutrient uptake and distribution, and increased concentration of chlorophyll and RUBP carboxylase in leaves. (AKA the Calvin cycle)
How Silicon Increases Resistance to Pathogens. Silicon is impregnated in the epidermal cell layer acting as a barrier against penetration of fungal attacks from powdery mildew, black spots, pythium and phytophthora and many more fugal problems. Silicate also increase the mechanical strength of the plant to help it in extreme heat and cold swings, salt build up in soils or increased TDS in water, and controls the rate of transpiration of plants. Silicon plays an active role in combating fungal growth by the production of polyphenolic compounds, this is a main part of the plants natural defense against fugal and insect attacks. The plants leaf system will rapidly bound Silicon in the tissue and cell walls with in 24 hours of uptake. Therefore a continuous source of Silicate is very important. When silicate uptake by the plant it will start with the older growth and work is way into the newer growth to help build up the mechanical strength of the plant. When adding Silicate to a foliage spray program, it will help lower the rate of disease attack and helps protect the plants new leafs from spider mites, aphids, and many other sucking type insects.
How Silicon Increases the Metabolic Rate of Plants It has been shown that silicate improves resistance to wilt, resistance to water stress, can help fight heat stress up too 40 deg C. If your plant has excessive transpiration, the plant will cease it metabolic function and stunted or no growth will occur. Use if silicates in cloning or new seedlings helps speed up the rate of growth by as much as 90% (University of Florida and Minnesota). Also the study showed that 18% to 80% increase of dry weight of fruit and herbs. It also increases reproductive rate in plants (Bud Growth). Increases tolerance of Zinc deficiencies, excessive phosphorus, manganese, sodium and aluminum toxicity.
Silicon can be used as a broad spectrum, preventative fungicide with optimum control obtained when used under a scheduled preventative spray program. Silicon also provides suppression of mites, whiteflies, and other insects. It is approved for use on agricultural crops, fruits, nuts, vines, turf and ornamentals.
Optimal SiO in hydroponic solution …
Nutrient solution — 100ppm SiO2 (w/w) —– 46.7ppm Si
Foliar spray ——– 1000ppm SiO2 (w/w) —– 467ppm Si
However, there are several important things that you need to be aware of when using silicon in your hydroponics system. Firstly, silicon has the tendency to react with other ions and if present at too high levels in the nutrient solution this can cause the precipitation (“drop out”) of other elements from solution. That is, silicates are relatively insoluble and the acidic pH in hydroponics can cause some precipitation of different reaction products of this ion with other ionic species present within the hydroponics solution. The silicate ions can also form silicic acid and start to polymerize into complex macromolecular structures. Basically, silicates in hydroponic solutions can act in unpredictable ways. For this reason, lower rates of use versus higher rates of use in hydroponic solution is advised.
Secondly, Si products typically are highly alkaline. Therefore, when added to solution they raise the solutions pH. As pH rises to above 8.0, the form that silica takes in solution changes from non-reactive, non-ionic monosilicic acid, to reactive, ionic polysilicic acids that react with other minerals and precipitate out of solution, giving a cloudy appearance. That is, at high pH of above 8 silica changes to a form that can react with other minerals and precipitate out of solution. The best way to prevent this is to add your Si additive to water (no nutrients – just water) outside of the nutrient tank/reservoir, and then lower the pH; to 5.5 – 6.5 before adding it to your hydroponic nutrient solution. Depending on how much ml of silicon is required and how concentrated the liquid product is, prediluting the silicon in large portion of water (5 – 10 litres) and pH adjusting the solution (water + silicon) before adding it to the nutrient tank/reservoir. Adding the silicon to the nutrient tank/reservoir in this way minimizes the risk of nutrient precipitation.
Thirdly, after many years of using silicon products in hydroponics, like all other plant nutrients, too much Si in the root zone antagonizes other nutrients. For example, it has been shown that excessive levels of Si antagonizes iron and zinc. Other than this, it has been shown that silicon increases the oxiding power of the roots making Fe and Mn less soluble. Further, some research suggests that while the benefits of Si are seen when used at one level, when its’ use exceeded this ideal level, growth was negatively affected. What this really comes down is to use silicon at full strength during grow and early bloom, but reduce the strength to about 65 % once the flowers begin to set (i.e. when the bulk of the internodes are formed and flowers/fruit begin swelling), this offers the best results and that too much Si in solution can negatively impact on optimal fruitset.
Therefore, Si application in Run To Waste/Drain To Waste in organic substrates (e.g. coco and sphagnum peat) at the lower end of the scale – this being between …..
20 (productive stage) to 30 ppm Si (vegetative stage).
In inert medias and water-based systems Si use at a higher rate of
30 (productive stage) to 46.7 ppm Si (vegetative stage).
Liquid Silicon is highly alkaline so it is important to check compatibility with fertilisers and pesticides that may react negatively in a high pH spray solution. Any product label that carries a warning statement about mixing with alkaline substances or to buffer pH 5-6 are most at risk.
Check product labels for mixing and compatibility statements and make pH adjustments with citric acid or phosphoric acid where appropriate.
Application for foliar spray ..
3ml of silicon + 1ml of phosphoric acid in 1 liter of water will yield a solution of 6.5pH, 789ppm SiO2.
Standard packing :
5 liters ….. RM100; larger qty with special discount
Free shipment within West Malaysia by KTMD to nearest station.