There is no doubt about the benefits of using hydrogen peroxide properly in a hydroponics system. This becomes especially true if your nutrient reservoir solution is maintained above 72 degrees. Warm water holds less dissolved oxygen, and therefore encourages the growth of more viruses, fungi, and anaerobic bacteria. Using hydrogen peroxide adds oxygen to the water and cleans it of pathogens. In hydroponic gardening, there are harmful bacteria strains that will thrive in low oxygen content water. The warmer it gets, the less oxygen it holds.
Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) will counteract the chlorine many public water providers use to sterilize tap water. Well water may be high in methane and organic sulfates, and H2O2 will remove both. Many disease causing organisms and spores are killed by the free oxygen that H2O2 releases. Hydrogen peroxide will help eliminate existing infections and prevent future ones. It will prevent bacterial wilt, pythium fungi, fusarium fungi, and others.
Not only is oxygen a major component of the plant structure itself and one of the main elemental nutrients the plant feeds upon, it also performs many important functions within the plant participating in all metabolic processes. Adding H202 will provide extra oxygen to help with all these functions including:
To get a head start on seed germination, whether you're starting herbs, flowers, vegetables, or fruits, you can speed up the sprouting process and protect your seedlings from mildews and molds with simple hydrogen peroxide.
For wet sprouting (when using a flat surface and wet paper towel or other cloth) spray the outer surface of the damp material enclosing the seeds once a day. Continue to supplement watering with a 3% solution even after the sprouts are up and beginning to grow. You can also use the 3% hydrogen peroxide, to spray foliage, bark, and blooms if you notice any kind of bacterial attack on your plants.
Safe and the most user friendly are the regular strengths of hydroponic peroxide, 3% 5% and 8%. If you read the label on a bottle of regular household hydrogen peroxide you will usually see that the inactive ingredient is purified water. This is like pure distilled water that is beneficial. On the label, look for “Active Ingredient:”ق│┼it should state “hydrogen peroxide (stabilized) 3%.”
Three percent hydrogen peroxide may be added at up to three milliliters per liter (2 1/2 teaspoons per gallon), but it is recommended that you start at a lower concentration and increase to full strength over a few weeks. Use at every reservoir change (each 2-3 weeks) starting out with 1 teaspoon per gallon; at the next change (and at every change after that) increase the hydrogen peroxide to 2-1/2 teaspoons per gallon. Let the hydroponic system circulate the hydrogen peroxide-water solution for about 30 minutes to let the hydrogen peroxide work against pathogens. That allows the solution to stabilize before adding nutrients.
The beneficial effects of using hydrogen peroxide last about 4 days. There are some gardeners who add a little of it to the nutrient reservoirs every 5 days between reservoir changes. If you do this always make sure your solution is thoroughly mixed before exposing your plant roots to it.
Your local hydroponics retailer will no doubt carry the solution you require, and it can also be purchased from many web sites The 3%, 5%, or 8% solutions can be found at most drugstores or pharmacies, but purchasing solutions from your local hydroponic store is a better option. The containers will have charts for dilution and instructions for use that will be very helpful.
DISCLAIMER: All information, content, and data in this article are sole opinions and/or findings of the writer. This information should not be used in any way, implemented or applied without consultation from a professional.