Grow-Genius silicon FAQ
1) What's the difference between silica, silicon and mono?
Silicon: (Si) Widely used common chemical element, important plant and human nutrient.
Silicone: Silicon + synthetic polymers: for bathrooms and kitchens. Not for plants.
Silicium: (Si) Old name originally proposed for silicon in 1808. Still the normal French word for silicon today. Confusing if you're not in France.
Silica: (SiO2) Silicon dioxide, a compound of silicon and oxygen: aka quartz beach sand. Very stable. Very hard for plants to pull usable silicon out of.
Orthosilicic acid: Si(OH)4. Another name for monosilicic acid.
Monosilicic acid: Si(OH)4: 100% plant available silicon: Si in the form that plants naturally take up. All the other forms of silicon above have to break down or be broken down over time before they can be used by plants. Mono shortcuts that process and delivers silicon in the exact form plants have evolved to use.
Stablised monosilicic: Mono is unstable by nature: to be able to bottle it you need a stablising formula. First done circa 2003, there are early stablised monos at between 1 and 4% concentration, and then there is the latest tech from Grow-Genius with an unmatched 40% active ingredient content.
2) Does Grow-Genius 40% mono-silicic affect pH?
No. It is completely neutral. Add it before or after nutrients and final adjustment. Whatever suits you.
3) Does Grow-Genius 40% mono-silicic have a shelf life restriction?
No. GG mono is completely stable until mixed with water. It does not decompose or loose effectiveness over time, however, we would recommend using it within three years of purchase to ensure the bottle remains in good condition as any water ingress will damage the product.
4) Why do you say feed AND foliar spray with GG mono? What if I can only do one?
No problem! We say do both because foliar biases silicon slightly towards leaves, and when applied via irrigation there is a slight bias towards the internals of the plant. So ideally do both. BUT: One of the unique attributes of mono is the ability to provide plant-wide benefits via foliar application alone. Other forms of silicon only provide system wide protection and faster growth via irrigation. Why? Again, because they have to be turned into mono first before they work….not so with mono. So if you can only irrigate, or only spray: no problem! You’ll still get plant-wide benefits and protection with Grow-Genius.
5) Does Grow-Genius 40% mono-silicic contain PGRs?
Not the PGRs you are thinking of. Almost all products that affect plant growth are or contain Plant Growth Regulators: compounds that act in analogous ways to hormones in humans. Using bananas to ripen fruit is a PGR hack. The problems with PGRs arose when unscrupulous companies sold industrial synthetic PGRs developed for bedding plants and unsafe for human consumption into other markets. Grow-Genius comes from the food producing sector and uses totally different technologies to get our results. Our products are always 100% safe for use as instructed and we publish full product contents details online in our comprehensive MSDS for those who are interested.
6) Why do you mention beer not saying how strong it is in your advertising?
Because it’s a direct analogy for mono that sums up a technical subject in a way that's easy to intuitively understand. You wouldn’t buy expensive beer that says it’s strong but doesn’t list how strong...or a sports car that didn’t list a top speed. So why buy mystery gardening products?
Marketing can pass almost anything off as progress and that stops people learning. It takes the power of choice away if you don’t know how or why products work.
GG Mono works because mono is a plant nutrient: not an invention. The special part is how it’s stabilised to give affordable 40% strength. And we love to talk about that - but most important to us is getting the plant science message out to people.
Bonus fact: Beer is actually one of the most concentrated natural sources of monosilicic acid in the human diet!
7) Is Grow-Genius 40% mono-silicic TOO STRONG???
No. For a couple of reasons: First: monosilicic acid isn't harmful to plants in excess: it's just wasted if you use too much. We recommend the dose we do because it's optimal for silicon loving plants when applied weekly (most competing brands require more frequent application).
And second: if you know your plants need less (if for example, the species is a 'silicon rejector') - you simply use less GG Mono!
Some first Gen 1% strength Mono products claim to be optimised: they aren't: all Gen 1 water based formulations are limited by chemistry to 4.2% concentration max: the marketing just spinds that however it can. Now, that doesn't mean they aren't effective: they are: even at 1% strength - but it's not a reason to pay the same for 1% as you could for 40% strenght product! So in short: there's no risk to our 40% mono: and if you want it weaker: use less, and save even more money!
8) How does Silicon reduce heat and water stress in plants?
In short: a variety of structural and metabolic ways. This ranges from improved uptake of water, to better protection of the plant's epidermis from heat and wind thanks to thicker and more plentiful trichomes (hairlike structures on stems and leaves).
Unlike mystery "stress reducing" products based on PGRs, silicon is a fundamental plant nutrient that has been thoroughly studied and evaluated by independent scientists and researchers. This doesn’t mean we have all the answers to all the details of each mechanism yet: but the results are not debatable. We encourage you to read through some of the hundreds of studies into various aspects of silicon performance in different crops: many are easily accessible online such as this fascinating look at water management from the US National Center for Biotechnology Information: