Enzyme for Cannabis: A Complete Guide To Get The Most From Your Plants
If you are a cannabis grower, you may have heard of enzymes and how they can benefit your plants. But what are enzymes exactly, and how do they work in cannabis? In this blog post, we will explain what enzymes are, why they are important for cannabis, where to find them, and how to use them in your growth.
What Are Enzymes?
Enzymes are biological molecules that act as catalysts, meaning they speed up chemical reactions without being consumed or altered themselves. They are essential for life, as they regulate many processes in living organisms, such as digestion, metabolism, and DNA replication.
Enzymes are also present in plants, where they perform various functions, such as breaking down organic matter, synthesizing hormones, and defending against pathogens. Enzymes can be classified into different types based on the reactions they catalyze, such as hydrolases, oxidoreductases, transferases, and so on.
How Do Enzymes Work in Cannabis?
Enzymes play a vital role in marijuana plants, as they help improve the health and productivity of your plants. Some of the benefits of enzymes for cannabis are:
- They break down dead roots and organic matter in the soil or growing medium, releasing nutrients and oxygen for the living roots and beneficial microbes.
- They enhance the uptake of water and nutrients by the roots, improving the plant’s growth and yield.
- They stimulate the production of hormones and phytochemicals in the plant, such as cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids.
- They protect the plant from stress and diseases by strengthening its immune system and detoxifying harmful substances.
Which Enzymes Are Best For Growing Cannabis, Natural Or Synthetic?
There are two main sources of enzymes for cannabis: natural and synthetic. Natural enzymes are derived from organic materials, such as fruits, vegetables, grains, or animal products. Synthetic enzymes are produced by industrial processes, such as fermentation or genetic engineering.
Natural enzymes are usually preferred by organic growers, as they are more environmentally friendly and compatible with the natural balance of the plant. However, they may have some drawbacks as well, such as lower concentration, shorter shelf life, and variable quality.
Synthetic enzymes are usually preferred by conventional growers, as they are more potent, stable, and consistent. However, they may also have some drawbacks, such as higher costs, potential toxicity, and environmental impact.
What Are the Most Commonly Used Enzymes in Cannabis Cultivation?
There are many types of enzymes that can be used, depending on the purpose and preference of the grower. Some of the most common ones are:
- Cellulase: This enzyme breaks down cellulose, a complex carbohydrate that forms the cell wall of plants. Cellulase helps decompose dead roots and organic matter in the soil or growing medium, freeing up space and nutrients for the living roots.
- Xylanase: This enzyme breaks down xylan, a type of hemicellulose that is also found in plant cell walls. Xylanase works together with cellulase to digest organic matter and improve soil structure.
- Beta-glucosidase: This enzyme breaks down beta-glucans, another type of hemicellulose that is involved in plant defense mechanisms. Beta-glucosidase helps activate the plant’s immune system and increase its resistance to stress and diseases.
- Hemicellulase: This enzyme breaks down hemicellulose in general, a group of polysaccharides that are closely associated with cellulose. Hemicellulase enhances the action of cellulase and xylanase by exposing more cellulose fibers to them.
- Amidase: This enzyme breaks down amides, a class of organic compounds that contain nitrogen. Amidase helps convert nitrogenous waste into usable forms of nitrogen for the plant.
How to Make a Homemade Enzyme Solution for Plants Step-by-Step
One way to obtain enzymes for cannabis is to make your own solution at home. This is a simple and inexpensive method that can yield good results if done correctly. Here are some steps you should follow to prepare it correctly:
- Fresh vegetables (scraps or peels also work)
- 2x plastic container (with lid)
- Measuring jug
Steps to follow:
1. Fill one container with fresh water and add molasses at a ratio of 1:3:10 (e.g., 250 ml of molasses, 750 ml of Fresh vegetables and, 2,5l of water). Stir well until dissolved.
2. Chop up your fresh vegetables into small pieces and add them to the other container. You can use any vegetables you like, but some of the best ones for enzymes are pineapple, papaya, banana, carrot, and ginger.
3. Pour the molasses-water mixture over the vegetables until they are fully submerged. Leave some space at the top of the container for gas expansion.
4. Cover the container with a lid and store it in a warm and dark location, like a closet or cabinet. Let it ferment for at least up to three months. Remember to open the lid once a week to release any gases that may develop during the fermentation process.
5. To determine if the enzyme-solution is ready, look for a dark brown color and a vinegary scent. Use a filter to separate the liquid from the homemade enzyme-solution. You have the option of disposing of the remaining organic waste or using it as additional fertilizer.
When and How to Use Enzymes on Cannabis?
Enzymes can be used on cannabis throughout the entire life cycle of the plant, from seedling to harvest. However, they are especially beneficial during the vegetative and flowering stages, when the plant has a high demand for nutrients and minerals.
Enzymes can be applied as a foliar spray or as a root drench. A foliar spray is when you spray the enzyme directly on the leaves and stems of the plant. This method allows the enzymes to penetrate the plant tissue and break down any dead or damaged cells. A root drench is when you water the plant with the enzyme-solution. This method allows the enzymes to reach the root zone and break down any organic matter in the soil or the medium.
The dosage and frequency of enzyme application depend on the type and concentration of the product you are using. It is advisable to follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully and adjust accordingly based on your observation of your plant’s health and performance. Generally speaking, you can apply enzymes once or twice a week during the vegetative stage, and once every two weeks during the flowering stage.
What Factors Affect the Activity and Efficiency of Enzymes?
Enzymes are sensitive to various factors that can affect their activity and efficiency. Some of these factors are:
- Temperature: Enzymes work best at an optimal temperature range, which varies depending on the type and source of the enzyme. Generally, enzymes work faster at higher temperatures, but they can also become denatured or damaged if the temperature is too high or too low.
- pH: Enzymes work best at an optimal pH level, which also varies depending on the type and source of the enzyme. Generally, enzymes work better at neutral or slightly acidic pH levels, but they can also lose their function or stability if the pH is too acidic or too alkaline.
- Concentration: Enzymes work better at higher concentrations, as this increases the chances of them encountering their substrates (the molecules they act on). However, there is a limit to how many enzymes can be increased, as this can also cause saturation or inhibition of the reaction.
- Interaction: Enzymes are natural and safe for your plants, but they can also interact with other additives or nutrients that you are using. Therefore, it is recommended to avoid mixing enzymes with other products in the same solution, unless specified otherwise by the manufacturer. It is also advisable to flush your plants with plain water before and after applying enzymes, to prevent any buildup or imbalance of salts or minerals in your soil or medium.
Enzymes for Cannabis: Do You Need Them in Your Garden?
Enzymes are powerful tools that can help you improve your cannabis-growing experience. By using enzymes in your garden, you can enhance your plant’s health, growth, yield, potency, and taste. You can also reduce your waste, cost, and environmental impact.
Enzymes are easy to find and use, as you can either buy them from a store or make them yourself at home. You just need to know what types of enzymes to use, how much to use, and when to use them.
Enzymes are not magic bullets that will solve all your problems, but they are certainly worth trying if you want to take your cannabis growing to the next level.
FAQs - Enzyme for Cannabis
Enzymes can provide many benefits for cannabis, such as:
- Improving soil health and structure: Enzymes can help decompose dead roots, leaves, and other organic matter in the soil, creating a more porous and aerated medium that allows better water and oxygen penetration. This can prevent root rot, fungal infections, and nutrient lockout.
- Enhancing nutrient uptake: Enzymes can help release minerals and trace elements from organic matter and make them more available for plant absorption. This can improve plant growth, yield, and quality.
- Boosting plant immunity: Enzymes can help activate plant defense mechanisms against pests and diseases, such as producing phytoalexins and antioxidants. This can increase plant resistance and resilience.
- Stimulating growth: Enzymes can help stimulate plant hormones, such as auxins, cytokinins, and gibberellins, that regulate growth and development. This can enhance root formation, stem elongation, branching, flowering, and fruiting.
The amount of enzymes to use for cannabis depends on several factors, such as:
- The type of enzyme product: Different enzyme products may have different concentrations and compositions of enzymes. It is important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and recommendations for dosage and application frequency.
- The stage of growth: Cannabis plants may require different amounts of enzymes at different stages of their life cycle. Generally, more enzymes are needed during the vegetative stage than the flowering stage.
- The growing conditions: Cannabis plants may need more or fewer enzymes depending on environmental factors, such as temperature, humidity, light intensity, pH level, etc. It is advisable to monitor the plant’s response and adjust the dosage accordingly.
There are many enzyme products available on the market for cannabis growers. Some of the most popular ones are:
- Cannazym: A product from Canna that contains a blend of 12 different enzymes that help break down dead roots and organic matter in the soil. It also contains vitamins that stimulate the growth of the plants.
- Hygrozyme: A product from Sipco that contains a blend of 5 different enzymes that help decompose organic matter and release nutrients in the soil. It also contains beneficial bacteria that improve soil health.
- Sensizym: A product from Advanced Nutrients that contains over 80 different enzymes that help break down organic matter and release nutrients in the soil. It also contains humic acids that enhance nutrient uptake.
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