What is the best and easiest growing method for starters?

CANNA produces 4 different nutrients for 4 different growing methods. All have advantages and disadvantages and depend mostly on the growers ability and experience. Of the 4 growing methods the easiest for starters are the CANNA Coco and Terra lines. The corresponding substrate has extra benefits added deigned to reduce mistakes. Using Coco or Terra according the grow guide will always give a wonderful yield with minimum attention required.

What is a substrate?

Substrates have 2 main functions. The first being to hold the plant in place for optimal growing. The second depends on the type of substrate. Substrate such as TERRA, COCO, potting mixes and soil also hold water and nutrients that can be available to the plant roots. The substrates will hold the nutrients that are ready to use or through chemical processes they will convert the nutrients into a form the plants can use. Inert substrates like clay balls, rockwool or sand do not have those capacities and simply function to hold the plant. Roots in these systems need to be kept humid all the time.

Why are there different nutrients (VEGA and FLORES) for the Growing phase and Flowering phase of the plant cycle?

Plants require different amounts of certain nutrient elements at different times during the plant cycle. During the Growing or Vegetative phase the plants need additional nitrogen, calcium and magnesium for strong growth to get the plants quickly to the desired size. During the flowering phase the plants need additional Potassium and Phosphorous for good flower and fruit development. If all elements would be together in 1 solution the balance in the root environment is disrupted causing deficiencies. Only with Coco A&B nutrients all elements are in the same bottle because of the unique buffering characteristics of the Coco substrate.

When do I know when to start giving my plant the flowering nutrient?

Plants require the flowering nutrient as day lengths become longer or shorter depending on your crop. Plants such as chillies and tomatoes that normally flower and fruit during the summer months start to flower as the day length becomes longer. For plants that flower during the autumn/ winter months, such as citrus and brassica's, they start to flower as the day length becomes shorter. For outdoor plants this will happen naturally with the seasons. Indoors this happens with changing the amount of time the lights are on. The flowering nutrients should be given when the day length becomes shorter or longer depending on your crop.

For indoor gardeners the sign of flowers may not appear until the day length is changed with the exclusion of auto flowering plants. Change the light cycle first then start your flowering nutrient.

Why do some nutrient lines have an A&B formula? What does it mean?

Some nutrients are divided into two bottles, an A&B, because in a high concentrated form the elements in these solution react with each other if mixed together. Then precipitation occurs and the nutrients are not available for uptake by the plant any more.

The use of A&B nutrients must always be mixed in equal amounts. Add A nutrient first, stir, and add B nutrient and stir again.

>When using measuring equipment make sure you clean it in between measuring both A and B. If any solution is left in the equipment, the elements will bind. Alternatively separate equipment for A and B can also prevent binding of nutrients.

Why are A & B not available in 1 bottle?

If A & B would be together in one bottle much more volume would be needed to dissolve the nutrients. Never mix concentrated A and B together since insoluble nutrients (gypsum) will be formed.

What is the biggest difference between mineral nutrients and biological ORGANIC nutrients?

The biggest difference is their origin, which is the reason why the organic nutrients can be used for organic growing. Biological (organic) nutrients are released slowly. Mineral fertilisers are available from the start. The ingredients of the nutrients and additives are sourced from different origins, which is the main difference.

Mineral nutrients are inorganic salts made from mineral sources and are directly available to the plants for plant growth and bloom.

Organic nutrients are derived from organic sources such as plant and animal materials and can work as a slow release nutrients through reactions with the substrate and any micro organisms in the mix. For more information see article Organic/ Mineral, what´s the deal?

What is the shelf life of CANNA products?

CANNA nutrients and additives always have a “Best-before” date on the back of the bottle or can. CANNA guarantees that until this date the quality and effect of the product will be optimal. Conditional to the products stored and handled the right way and not opened yet. The date serves as a quality insurance for CANNA products and it guarantees it's freshness. The length of time for each products has been determined by extended testing over the years.

Our products are still safe for usage after their best-before date has passed, however the product might gradually lose it's effect compared to the high standards we have set to it. Note that they will never become toxic for plants, these are not “expiry” dates. However depending on how the products were handled over that period of time, they may become less effective. The way the product changes after it's best-before date all depends on storage and on the working ingredients within the product.

Product Shelf life in years Product Shelf life in years
CANNA Aqua Flores A 3 CANNA Substra Vega A hard water 3
CANNA Aqua Flores B 3 CANNA Substra Vega A soft water 3
CANNA Aqua Vega A 3 CANNA Substra Vega B hard water 3
CANNA Aqua Vega B 3 CANNA Substra Vega B soft water 3
CANNA PK 13/14 5 CANNA Coco A 3
CANNA Start 3 CANNA COGr Buffer Agent 3
CANNABOOST Accelerator 3 CANNA COGr Flores A 3
CANNA Terra Flores 3 CANNA COGr Vega A 3
CANNA Terra Vega 3 CANNA COGr Vega B 3
CANNA Substra Flores A hard water 3 BIOCANNA Bio Vega 3
CANNA Substra Flores A soft water 3 BIOCANNA Bio Flores 3
CANNA Substra Flores B hard water 3 BIOCANNA BioRHIZOTONIC 1
CANNA Substra Flores B soft water 3 BIOCANNA BioBOOST 3

I want to try CANNA products can you please send me some samples?

At CANNA we have done testing and development of our products for almost 30 years, along with almost 30 years of satisfied gardeners from around the world. This makes us believe our products meet the growers and plant needs. For distribution of our products we rely on our loyal retail stores who are fully capable of giving proper advice and explain the benefits of our products. As a company we do not want to bypass our loyal retailers, we do not provide products to individuals. Also we believe in the products and in the growers capacity to successfully get their return on investment. We believe our quality will prove itself.

What is the importance of pH measuring?

pH has a great influence on the availability of the different nutrient elements. Therefore be sure the pH is always in the right range. The best availability range in the substrate is from 5.2- up to 6.2.

What is EC?

EC means Electrical Conductivity. EC is the concentration of salts in the water or nutrient solution. Water quality varies depending on the water source or conditioning (ie. RO water) and should be tested prior to adding nutrients as it may effect the EC of the nutrient solution applied to the plants. Which can then affect plant growth by adding to much or too little.

On your website/label you advice to use PK 13/14 one week while a shop recommended me to use it more weeks?

We recommend to use PK 13/14 always for one week! CANNA feeding already contains a certain amount of P and K. When the plant is in a certain stage of the flowering stage we can't increase the feed for the plant any more, so we change the PK-ratio by adding PK 13/14 for one week.

Which bacteria will Trichoderma kill?

Trichoderma (a fungus family) do not kill bacteria. Most Trichoderma protect the plant against harmful fungi. This is because they eat other fungi. They stimulates the root environment so roots can develop better and with more root hairs. As a result the plant gains more vitality.

What kind of substrate should I use?

The type of substrate will depend on your system and growing experience. Some substrates are easier and more forgiving to use while others are more intensive. Choose your system or substrate based on these parameters. For new gardeners just starting out the recommendation would be for using CANNA TERRA or CANNA COCO as there are fewer chances of making mistakes. For more advanced growers CANNA SUBSTRA or CANNA AQUA might be more suitable for your skill level. This is all more or less a matter of growers preference and skills. There is no substrate type better than others. It all depends on your preferred growing system.

I'm using a re-circulating system. Should I use SUBSTRA or AQUA?

CANNA specially developed CANNA AQUA for recirculating systems. CANNA SUBSTRA should be used when using a run-to-waste system. Please do not mix those two up!

Soak rock wool before use

Never use raw rockwool! The pH is too high. Always soak rockwool before using it for the 1st time. Soak with water or a nutrient mixture with the pH adjusted to 5 and an EC of about 1.3 (ppm values). CANNA Start has been specially developed for this purpose. As well as correcting pH & EC, a pre-soak also ensures an even distribution of the nutrient solution throughout the slab.

Potting mix

Do you have problems with potting mix that becomes compressed and then absorbs water with difficulty? This can be easily overcome by mixing COCO with the potting mix, which will ensure that it can absorb water easily again.

Temperature & pH

To ensure good root development the feeding water must be between 68 – 77°F. When it's below 59°F the roots’ capacity to absorb decreases quickly, which results in a smaller harvest. If the feeding solution is mixed using cold water then the pH will rise when the water is heated. In this case, a high pH can be avoided by setting the pH a bit lower from the start.

CANNA potting mixes

The more nutrients that have been added to the potting mix in advance, the more difficult it will be for cuttings to take. This problem can be avoided by using CANNA potting mixes.

Do not put all your money on one horse

Two pumps can be used to supply the nutrient solution to the plants to ensure that they will not be left dry if one of the two should malfunction.

Air and pH

If there are any air pumps in the nutrient reservoir, remember that these may raise the pH in the nutrient reservoir.

Root growth

Watch the roots closely. Otherwise they will grow into the drainage holes. This will block the drains and the system will stop circulating.

Large plants

Do not place too many plants per square yard; plants will generally become larger on CANNA Coco and will need more space than on e.g. rock wool or potting soil.

Keep your nutrients dark

Light breaks down iron chelates! Because of this, it is very important to ensure that no Ultra Violet light falls on the nutrient solution. Light also causes algae to grow in the nutrient solution, which can lead to blockages. Furthermore, algae can take up nutrient elements and cause nutrient deficiencies to occur.

Keep slabs horizontal

Make sure the rock wool slabs are horizontal. If they are not truly horizontal the moisture will run to one end of the slab. This could mean that some plants become too dry and others too wet.

Amounts of nutrients

Keep a record of the amounts of nutrients and additives you add to each tank of nutrients you mix. You then have a good starting point for the next time!

Measuring EC/ppm

Don’t just measure the EC/ppm of the feed water and the drainage water regularly, remember to measure the EC/ppm of the substrate too.

Substra A and B

You can easily distinguish between CANNA Substra A and B products because the A bottle contents is coloured and the B bottle contents is colourless.

Nutrient tank

Take your time diluting and adjusting your nutrient tank! This is essential for the growth, flowering and development of the plants and will yield the best results.


Very high EC/ppm values increase the chance of burning, particularly for plants that are directly under the lamp. In order to reduce the risk of burning, the potting soil can be rinsed with CANNAZYM