8 Best Hydroponic Nutrients for Vegetables and Fruits – 2023

I love to be in greens and and hope you too. I know the urge to find the best food for your hydroponic friends has brought you to this web page. I will share my experience with you to help you in finding the Best Hydroponic Nutrients for Vegetables. I not only have my own but visited the nearby hydroponic installations as a consultant.

Taking a healthy harvest without soil is a great challenge in hydroponic systems. However, the optimum dose and the right selection of hydroponic nutrients will take you to the best harvest. These indoor vegetables and fruits are highly responsive to the dose and type of fertilizers.

The market is full of brands with different active ingredients as nutrients, however, picking the right one will be a wise decision for your green friends. Here, in this article, I will provide you with a list and personal review of the pros and cons of 3 different nutrients, those I consider the best for hydroponics.

What is the best hydroponic nutrients for Vegetables?

Hydroponics are intensive vertical farming that requires high concentration and high frequency of nutrients. If you are stuck and are unable to choose the best hydroponic nutrients for vegetables, you must know the following points. Any nutrient can be best for hydroponics if it has the following properties;

  • Water soluble – If the nutrient is in liquid form or power form, it can be readily soluble in water. This can prove to be the best nutrient for hydroponic gardens.
  • High in concentration – time-saving and cost-effective features come with the concentration. The concentration of the nutrient in the pack should be high.
  • High Storability – If the pack of nutrients is in liquid form, it should have a long life in the store. Otherwise, you may lose this valuable pack.
  • Combo Nutrient – A nutrient with more than one combination can provide multi-stage fertility to the plants in a hydroponic system.
  • Buffering capacity – The availability of nutrients highly depends upon the pH of the media and the nutrient being applied. A nutrient that can bear this change and has a buffering capacity to match the pH difference would be a good option to be selected as the best nutrient for hydroponic nutrients.

Moreover, select the nutrient based on the plant’s need, growth stage, and budget.

Best Hydroponic Nutrients for Vegetables

Let’s dive deep into the reviews and Pro and cons of 8 The Best nutrients for hydroponics;

  1. MaxiGro – Powdered Nutrients
  2. Fox Farm – Liquid Nutrient
  3. Aero Garden Nutrients
  4. Masterblend – Combo Kit
  5. Botanicare Pure Blend Pro Grow Terpene Enhancing – BCPBPGQT
  6. General Hydroponics – pack of 3 (Grow, Bloom, Micro)
  7. Cal-Mag Supplement – Liquid
  8. Go Grow Hydroponics

1. MaxiGro – Powdered Nutrients

Maxigro is a high-quality and is one of the best hydroponic nutrients for vegetables and other green indoor plants in the hydroponic system. These are best for the early growth stage of the vegetables. However, a higher dose can be helpful in the later growth stages as well.

MaxiGrow and MaxiBloom - Best Hydroponic Nutrients for vegetables

Features of MaxiGrow

This pack of nutrients is available in the stores. However, you must know its magical features before going to buy it.

Powdered Formulation

If the nutrient is in powdered form, it enhances the dissolvability of the nutrients and thus quick availability. MaxiGrow is available in powder form. This formulation helps in making the solution at its best with water before application.

For healthy growth, a plant requires multiple nutrients. These nutrients are macro nutrients and micronutrients. 16 nutrients in total are essential. Nitrogen, phosphorus, Potassium, Calcium, and Magnesium are included in Macro nutrients. While nickel, cobalt, copper, selenium, manganese, etc are micro nutrients. MaxiGrow offers a complete range of all these nutrients.

Moreover, a combination of MaxiGrow and MaxiBloom can help you get the best results. My review of the combination of both has shown that MixiGrwo helps the plant to establish and grow well in the early stages. However, later in the life stages for vegetative and reproductive stages, MaxiBloom performs better.

Nutrient Concentration

As I have mentioned they have a maximum concentration of 16 available essential nutrients, and they have a high concentration of all of these. Thus, a very small amount, a dose of 15 to 20 ml will be sufficient for the pot in hydroponics.

Good Storability

The pack of nutrients is hight concentrated with multi-nutrients (including micro and macro), which is easy to store. The size of the pack is compact and can fit easily in the packing box for storing a long time. Sealed bags keep them fresh for years.

Pros and Cons of MaxiGrow

Following are the summarized pros and cons of MaxiGrow and MaxiBloom

  • Powdered formulation
  • Highly concentrated with all essential nutrients
  • Easy to store
  • A combination of MaxiGrow and MaxiBloom is available for convenience
  • Need mixing with water before application

2. Fox Farm – Liquid Nutrient

This pack of nutrients has a tri-hydro formula. It means it has 3 in 1 nutrient formulations, important for different growth stages of plants. This slow-releasing liquid nutrient is good enough for better growth at all stages of the plant.

Fox Farm - Best Hydroponic Nutrients for vegetables

Components and Their Features

The pack of 3 in 1 nutrients has the following components

  • Grow Big – It has a ratio of NPK as 3:2:6. This part of the formulation is the best nutrient for hydroponic vegetables at early growth stages.
  • Tiger Bloom – NPK in the ratio of 2:8:4. Once your vegetables for home gardening start blooming, flowering, and fruiting, you need Tiger Bloom. This is the best organic nutrient for your veggies.
  • Big Bloom – it has a relatively low ratio of NPK (0:0.5:0.7). Once your fruits are growing, they need more nutrients to get eh stored food filled in. All this comes with the Big Bloom. It has a high concentration of secondary nutrients. These nutrients are the needs of your vegetables and fruits.

Pros and Cons

Fox farm is the best choice for the farmer to feed their hydroponics.

  • Three-parts – help to support plant at every stage of life cycle
  • Liquid nutrients, easily available
  • Highly concentrated
  • They are highly sensitive to the acidic pH. They may not be available to the plant in lower pH.

3. Aero Garden Nutrients

AeroGardens, as the name shows, these nutrients are specifically designed for vegetables and fruits grown without soil (in the air). Hydroponics are called vertical gardening or towered gardening.

Aero garden - Best Hydroponic Nutrients

Features of AeroGarden Nutrients

The following features make Aero-garden stand out from all others;

Liquid Nutrients with Instant Availability

AeroGardens are liquid nutrients and thus are regarded as the Best nutrient for hydroponic gardens. They are concentrated with all the essential nutrients for the plants growing in hydroponic culture. They are in a liquid state, thus easily available.

They dissolve well in the water applied at the time of application and thus are available for the plants readily.

pH buffering

As we have mentioned above in the fox farm liquid nutrients they are highly pH specific and a change in the pH may limit their availability. However, AeroGarden Nutrients are best in this regard because they buffer any change in the pH of the media.

In Hydroponics, pH buffering plays a big role in the availability of nutrients. If you’re a beginner in gardening, you must consider this aspect. If the pH of the media and the applied nutrient is mismatched, you will lose all of your nutrients.

More than 100 feedings per bottle

The nutrients are highly concentrated and in liquid form, thus they can make a feeding with just 5-7 ml per little. Thus a bottle of 500 ml may stay up to 80 to 100 feedings. For hydroponics in vertical gardening, you need to apply nutrients after every 2 weeks. It means a single bottle of AeroGarden may last for 2 years.

Pros and Cons

A single bottle of AeroGarden is magical with several properties. However, there are some constraints as well.

  • Liquid form of nutrients, highly and instant available
  • pH buffering capacity
  • A single bottle of AeroGarden provides multiple feedings
  • As it has more features, it is expensive too

Although the bottle of AeroGarden is expensive, you can use it for almost 2 years. It means the cost is not as much as you see on the label.

4. Masterblend – Combo Kit

It contains all three essential primary nutrients NPK in the ratio of 4:18:38. This blended nutrient kit is for all plants and all growth stages.

MasterBlend - Hydroponic Nutrients

Features of MasterBlend

This kit has the following features;

  • It is a combination of all highly required NPK nutrients.
  • It is in powdered formulation, thus easy to store. Moreover, making formulation is quite easy.

5. Botanicare Pure Blend Pro Grow Terpene Enhancing – BCPBPGQT

It is a type of compound fertilizer. A fertilizer is a compound if it contains NPK in it. It has N:P: K as 3:2:4. It is good for plants, vegetables, fruits, shrubs, and cacti.

Pure Blend Pro Grow Terpene Enhancing - Hydroponic Nutrients

It has the following features;

  • It is a compound nutrient pack with NPK in the ratio of 3:2:4.
  • These nutrients are derived from high-quality parent materials like rock phosphate and carbonates.
  • It is equally useful for plants, herbs, shrubs, and even for cacti.
  • It is highly water-soluble and thus readily available.
  • It is good for plants in the hydroponics at all stages.
  • It comes in quart bottles and is affordable

6. General Hydroponics – pack of 3 (Grow, Bloom, Micro)

General Hydroponics comes in a pack of 3 gallons to fulfil all the needs of plants.

General Hydroponics Nutrients
  • Flora Micro – NPK in the ratio of 5:0:1. It is good for almost all stages of plant growth
  • Flora Grow – NPK in the ratio of 2:1:6. This pack is good for vegetative growth
  • Flora Bloom – NPK in the ratio of 0:5:4. It is better for the flowering and fruiting stage of plants.

Features of General Hydroponics

It has the following features;

  • It contains primary, secondary, and micronutrients, all in these 3 packs.
  • As there are three different gallons, you can mix them as per your choice and the stage of the plant.
  • They are highly effective, even NASA and Antarctic Research stations use these.
  • They enhance the aroma, flora, and oil content of the products.
  • The nutrient formulation has a buffering capacity for the change in pH of the medium.

7. Cal-Mag Supplement – Liquid

This budget fertilizer is to meet the deficiencies of Calcium and Magnesium elements. It is equally important for all types of plants, fruits, and veggies. It is used for aquaponics, hydroponics, and aeroponics

Features of Cal-Mag Supplement

It has the following features;

  • It is designed to meet the nutrient deficiencies.
  • It can be used for plants, herbs, veggies, fruits,
  • It is easy to use as it is in liquid formulation
  • It has the property to buffer any change in the pH

8. Go Grow Hydroponics

This is a highly effective nutrient formulation, containing all 16 types of micro, macro, primary, and secondary nutrients. It is a foil-lined pack, just to open, pour it into water, stir and apply. Foil-lined packs keep them fresh.

GO Grow Hydroponic Nutrients

Features of Go Grow

This magical pack has the following features;

  • It offers all the 16 essential nutrients for veggies, fruits, and cacti,
  • It is highly easy to use. Just open the foil-lined pack, mix it and apply.
  • Each pack can make 20 to 27 gallons of nutrients.
  • It is non-GMO and organic in the true sense.

Liquid vs. Powder Nutrients

Fertilizers always come in liquid, powder, and granular form. However, in the case of Hydroponics, they come in two forms, i.e. powder and liquid.

  • Liquid fertilizers are preferred by hobbyists and beginners
  • They make fertilization process with high percentage of return on investment
  • They are expensive
  • They may leak or evaporate in store
  • They are dry fertilizers but make good solution
  • They need some extra effort for mixing them properly
  • Commercial growers prefer to buy these are they are easy to store
  • They retain their freshness for long if foil-lined and packed


Nutrients applied to the hydroponics cultivation last for 7 to 10 days. Thus it is recommended to apply fertilizers every 2 weeks.

A fertilizer for hydroponic should have a good value of NPK. The recommended NPK ratio for a good fertilizer is 7:9:5 for vertical hydroponics.

Hydroponic nutrients like GH Flora, Fox Farm, AeroGardens, and some General Hydroponic fertilizers are needed for vertical hydroponics.

Among the different nutrients listed, Masterblend, a combination of all the necessary nutrients is the first choice of all the vertical growers.

These nutrients are in powder or liquid forms. If it is in the powdered form, mix well 4-5 grams of active ingredient in water, make a solution of 20% and apply to the plants. If it is in liquid form, take 4 to 5 ml of the liquid, mix it in a water bottle and apply.

Hydroponic nutrients like GH Flora, Fox Farm, and General Hydroponics are some of the nutrients designed for the Hydroponic system of cultivation.

Hydroponic nutrients are made of macronutrients like Nitrogen, Phosphorus, Potassium, Carbon, Hydrogen, and Oxygen and Micronutrients like Copper, Zinc, Boron, Nickel, and Manganese. They are organic and helpful in the growth and development of hydroponics.

Hydroponic nutrients are purely made for vertical farming and are concentrated. However, you can use them for soil, but with care as they have high concentrations of all the essential nutrients.

Botanicare BCBPGQT, Pure Blend Pro Grow is one of the best nutrients for vegetables grown on the Hydroponic system of cultivation.

Some External Sources

  1. Sanchez, E., Ford, T., Berghage, R., Di Gioia, F., Flax, N., (2021). Hydroponics Systems: Nutrient Solution Programs and Recipes, The Pennsylvania State University Extension, College of Agricultural Sciences. https://extension.psu.edu/hydroponics-systems-nutrient-solution-programs-and-recipes
  2. Hochmuth, G., and Hochmuth, R. (2018). Nutrient Solution Formulation for Hydroponic (Perlite, Rockwool, NFT) Tomatoes in Florida, U.S. Department of Agriculture, University of Florida, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences. https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/pdf%5CCV%5CCV21600.pdf

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