- 1 Why Should You Use Hydrogen Peroxide on Your Cannabis Crop?
- 2 What is Hydrogen Peroxide?
- 3 H2O2 and Cannabis
- 4 Pros and Cons Of Hydrogen Peroxide
- 5 How Does Hydrogen Peroxide Work?
- 6 Best Practices For Using H2O2 For Your Garden
- 7 How Is H2O2 Commonly Applied?
- 8 How Does an H202 Solution Help Your Cannabis Plant?
- 9 Treat or Botrytis Cinera or Bud Rot Fungal Infection
- 10 Helps With Seed Germination
- 11 Organic Bud Wash Solution
- 12 Final Thoughts
Why Should You Use Hydrogen Peroxide on Your Cannabis Crop?
Hydrogen Peroxide as it instantly foams upon contact is perhaps one of the best known and recognized, natural antiseptics on the market. In a health setting, it is used for treating minor burns, cuts, and scrapes. Additionally, hydrogen peroxide, in gardening works in pest control, mildew treatment and so much more.
What is Hydrogen Peroxide?
Hydrogen Peroxide’s chemical formula is H2O2, which is a combination of hydrogen (“H2”) and oxygen (“O2”). H2O2 is made up of the same chemicals as water, with the only difference is that it has an extra oxygen atom.
H2O2 and Cannabis
The foamy nature of H2O2 when it hits your skin is quite dramatic. As a result, you might be surprised to hear that diluted H2O2 can have many uses in growing cannabis, and gardening in general. First, though I will review the pros and cons of hydrogen peroxide, and evaluate the best practices for using H2O2 in cannabis cultivation.
Pros and Cons Of Hydrogen Peroxide
As with almost anything in life using hydrogen peroxide has its advantages and disadvantages, which are summarized below
- Organic – As it is composed of the natural chemicals hydrogen and oxygen, pure H2O2, is completely organic.
- Safe to Use-Per its Material Data Safety Sheet (“MSDS”), hydrogen peroxide is non-flammable. This means that, by itself, H2O2 cannot be used as fuel to start a fire.
- Non-Toxic– As hydrogen peroxide is used for hair care and for brushing your teeth it is also non-toxic
- Versatile-H2O2 can both treat and prevent a wide variety of gardening problems, some of which are, to treat soil, to limit the damage of Botrytis Cinerea (“Bud Rot”) and powdery mildew, help with plant disease prevention, perform seed development, soil aeration, promote plant growth, and much more.
- Fool-Proof- For gardening, a 3% hydrogen peroxide solution, which can be purchased at your local drug store will work perfectly. So, as long as you purchase 3% H2O2 and are able to follow simple directions you should be just fine.
- May Not Work On All Molds-There are an estimated 1.5 million fungi on the earth, and many of these fungi are damaging to both humans and plants. Therefore, as there are so many fungi, there is no guarantee that H2O2 will kill any fungal disease that has infected your plants.
- Can Kill Beneficial Microbes– A microbe includes both viruses and fungi. Viruses, bacteria, and fungi can harm and kill a plant; however, they also can help a plant. Therefore, only use H2O2 when it is needed.
How Does Hydrogen Peroxide Work?
A chemical reaction in hydrogen and peroxide breaks down hydrogen and oxygen and separates them into oxygen and water. The breaking down is what causes the H2O2 to aerate the soil, kill insects, etc.
Best Practices For Using H2O2 For Your Garden
The following are the two most important things to remember when using Hydrogen Peroxide for gardening.
Purchase 3.0 to 3.5% Hydrogen Peroxide
The maximum percentage of pure H2O2 that you should buy is 3.5% and for most purposes, 3.0% is preferred. Fortunately, finding 3 to 3.5% H2O2 will not be a chore as it is the most commonly available type available on Amazon and elsewhere.
Don’t Over Do It
Microbes consist of viruses, bacteria, and mildew, which damage and also help plants. An H2O2 solution kills both harmful and beneficial microbes. So, as you do not want to kill these helpful microbes, use H2O2 only when needed.
How Is H2O2 Commonly Applied?
The most common ways that hydrogen peroxide is applied to a marijuana plant is via a foliar spray or a soil drench. Each of these, application methods, is explained below.
Foliar is just a fancy word for leaves. Therefore, a foliar spray is a liquid that is applied directly to the plant’s leaves via a mist. An H2O2 foliar spray is often used for controlling fungal diseases like powdery mildew. Additionally, H2O2 is used in pest control.
A soil drench, as the name implies is when fertilizer, pesticides, etc., are poured directly onto the soil and no sprayed on the leaf surface. Soil drenches are done to fertilize and apply pesticides and fungicides. One major advantage of drenching the soil instead of spraying the leaves is that with a soil drench the H2O2 solution cannot be carried away by the wind, fan, etc. Therefore, by using an H2O2 soil drench you are making sure that your plants are getting what they need and that they need and that other plants aren’t in any danger of being over-fertilized because of the wind or carrying the H2O2 over to the other plants.
How Does an H202 Solution Help Your Cannabis Plant?
Below are a few ways that H2O2 may benefit your garden.
Treats a Powdery Mildew Infection
Powdery mildew (“PM”) initially shows up as a white, powdery, patch on leaves that has a fuzzy feel. When WPM is caught early it is not a big deal. However, if ignored WPM can destroy your entire cannabis crop.
Is Fungi the Same as Mold?-Fungi are microscopic, airborne microbes that surround plants and humans 24-7. Fungi and mold are often used interchangeably. Mold and fungi are though technically different. Fungi include multiple types of organisms, one of which you know of are mushrooms. Mold is also classified as being part of the fungus family.
How Is H2O2 Used To Kill WPM?
There are several articles on the web telling you the best way for using H2O2 to kill WPM. Essentially though they almost always involve spraying or drenching the soil with hydrogen peroxide.
If you can pour liquids into a spray bottle you can make a DIY hydrogen peroxide solution.
The first three steps are a summary of what needs to be done and the fourth step is just reminding you to repeat the process until there is no longer a problem. Click Here, for the full instructions.
Using an H2o2 Bath For Powdery Mildew (AKA-Foliar Spray)
- Remove-First remove any wilted leaves that are infected with the PM mold spores
VERY IMPORTANT-Cut off the infected leaves carefully as to prevent powdery mildew spores from spreading affecting other plants.
2. Mix-Add water, and 3% strength H2O2 into a gallon spray bottle and then thoroughly mix the contents.
3. Foliar Spray– Apply the H2O2 Mist solution on the most heavily infected leaves. The solution should be misted until you see it dripping off the leaves.
4. Repeat-Repeat the process until PM is no longer present.
As stated, above, this is just a brief summary of a DIY H2O2 spray. Click Here, for the full article.
Treat or Botrytis Cinera or Bud Rot Fungal Infection
Fungal infected bud rot spores spread from a single plant at first and then from plant to plant. Bud Rot first shows up inside a cannabis bud. As a result, it can be quite hard to discover and once it is discovered it may be too late. Therefore, the key is that once it is first noticed you need to nip it in the bud. (Pun Intended)
Prevention, Prevention, Prevention
Humidity causes bud rot. So, the only way it can be prevented is to make sure that your grow area is at the recommended humidity level, and if it is not you should use a dehumidifier to get it at the recommended humidity levels.
How Do You Use H2O2 to Kill Bud Rot?
The following is an excellent resource on how H2O2 can be used for treating and also preventing bud rot. In summary, the first step is to remove any infected plants, and afterward, you apply an H2O2 solution. Click Here, for this article.
Helps With Seed Germination
Applying H2O2 to cannabis seed breaks down seeds outside covering, which results in killing any germs that are currently present on the seed. The result of this is that cannabis seeds will be able to soak up more oxygen, which in turn means they will sprout more efficiently.
How To Do It
As soaking cannabis seeds is so simple you have no excuse to not do so. The following are simple instructions that are summarized from an article by the cannabis guru, Ed Rosenthal. Per Rosenthal, all you have to do to get cannabis seeds ready for germination is is soak your seed in a solution of water, commercial rooting, or hormone solution and then add standard 3% H2O2. Click Here, for the full instructions.
An H2O2 foliar spray is an excellent organic spider mites killer as it is both cheap and easy to prepare. All you have to do is pour your 3% strength hydrogen peroxide into a spray bottle. And when you spray you need to remember to spray the surface of the plant’s soil, crown, and the leaves underside.
The one weakness is that H2O2 doesn’t kill the spider mite eggs. However, organic neem oil can kill mites eggs. Additionally, you might want also to try a potassium bicarbonate (“Baking Soda”) mix, click here for simple instructions.
Organic Bud Wash Solution
Hydrogen Peroxide also works as an after-harvest, bud wash. A bud wash is, as the name implies s when you clean buds. It works both for newly harvested plants that are healthy and it also can save buds suffering from a major pest problem or if the cannabis bud is shy and dusty.
You first dunk freshly harvested cannabis plants in hydrogen peroxide and a water mix. The mix is one cup of 3% strength hydrogen peroxide per five gallons of water. And the bucket or trough needs to be large enough to comfortably, without spilling, hold the water and the plants. After dunking the weed you then lightly swirl the plants in the water and leave them underwater for around three to five minutes. Afterward, you take the plant out of the water and then start drying the plants.
Using hydrogen peroxide for gardening is cheap, and easy. Better yet, as long as you use 3%-H2O2, your plants will likely be safe. If you are timid just try using an H2O2 solution on a single plant and/or try it on a bud wash. So, give it a try and you’ll be surprised at the results you’ll get.