Renew Your pH/EC Meter Calibration Solutions
Spring has arrived and summer is almost here, which means itís time to dust off your pH/EC meters to begin monitoring crop nutrition. If you havenít used your pH/EC meter since your last cropping season, now is the time to check your meter. Growers should perform frequent maintenance such as checking the condition of the batteries, probe (glass bulb and electrode), and storage solution in the electrode cap. Maintenance of pH meters are often company and maybe model-specific. One should always read instruction manuals for to conducting routine maintenance to ensure longevity and accuracy. Speaking of accuracy, have you checked the date and storage condition of your calibration solutions or standard? As general rule of thumb, your pH and EC values are only as good as the last calibration. Therefore, renewing calibration solution when needed is equally important as performing meter maintenance. Growers should ensure calibration solutions have not expired. If they have, take the time to order new solutions. Not sure what solutions to order? Most often, pH meters will be accompanied with a userís manual which should outline which calibration solutions are recommended. Finally, remember that these solutions are sensitive and should not be stored in the greenhouse, but at room temperature.
W. Garrett OwenAssistant Professor and Greenhouse Extension Specialist , University of Kentucky
W. Garrett Owen is an Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist of floriculture, greenhouse and controlled-environment crop production in the Department of Horticulture at the University of Kentucky. He has an appointment in research, teaching and Extension. His area of expertise is controlled environment specialty crop production; plant nutrition; plant growth regulation; and production problem diagnostics.