Molasses is Sweet Organic Goodness

Discussion in 'Indoor Growing' started by Organic Rasta, Sep 7, 2006.

  1. Mr. Clandestine

    Mr. Clandestine Registered+

    I've used honey on a couple of occasions, but always found molasses to be a cheaper and more suitable alternative. I never thought of the honeys effect on the micro critters, though. Way to point that out, Rusty! :thumbsup:
  2. PamStoner

    PamStoner Registered+

    The one thing I don't think I saw mentioned is that if there are not enough micro-organisms present, then the plant will end up with root rot. This happened to me while growing in bubble jugs, and I lost 5 large girls in the last weeks of flower.
    I don't think I want to risk that again. I'll stick with raw cane sugar, if I use anything at all.
  3. texas grass

    texas grass Registered+

    heres updates to the molasses manual

    The Murky World of High Fructose Corn Syrup

    We’ve been working to decide if the 3LB molasses manual is in need of revision or if it needs to be totally rewritten, because in the 4+ years since it was first written, we’ve continued to research soil sweeteners and discuss them with a variety of gardeners. We’ve also compiled a bit more information on other alternative sugar sources, learning that some growers in commercial agriculture use sucrose or table sugar as an alternative to molasses. Some growers have inquired about alternative sugar sources such as honey or maple syrup, so we certainly hope to at least touch on those topics as this guide is reworked or revised.
    And finally there is a growing debate in North America about the use of High-Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) in our foods, and yes even in our gardens. We’ve encountered individuals using High-Fructose Corn Syrup as a molasses alternative, so we’ll try and give HFCS the 3LB treatment as a part of that upcoming molasses manual update/upgrade.
    Until those revisions are complete, we wanted to give our readers a bird’s eye view at one of the articles we archived as we were researching HFCS sweeteners.
    In the Kitchen with Mother Linda
    The Murky World of High Fructose Corn Syrup
    By Linda Joyce Forristal, CCP, MTA
    Think of sugar and you think of sugar cane or beets. Extraction of sugar from sugar cane spurred the colonization of the New World. Extraction of sugar from beets was developed during the time of Napoleon so that the French could have sugar in spite of the English trading blockade.
    Nobody thinks of sugar when they see a field of corn. Most of us would be surprised to learn that the larger percentage of sweeteners used in processed food comes from corn, not sugar cane or beets.
    The process for making the sweetener high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) out of corn was developed in the 1970s. Use of HFCS grew rapidly, from less than three million short tons in 1980 to almost 8 million short tons in 1995. During the late 1990s, use of sugar actually declined as it was eclipsed by HFCS. Today Americans consume more HFCS than sugar.
    High-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is produced by processing corn starch to yield glucose, and then processing the glucose to produce a high percentage of fructose. It all sounds rather simple–white cornstarch is turned into crystal clear syrup. However, the process is actually very complicated. Three different enzymes are needed to break down cornstarch, which is composed of chains of glucose molecules of almost infinite length, into the simple sugars glucose and fructose.
    First, cornstarch is treated with alpha-amylase to produce shorter chains of sugars called polysaccharides. Alpha-amylase is industrially produced by a bacterium, usually Bacillus sp. It is purified and then shipped to HFCS manufacturers.
    Next, an enzyme called glucoamylase breaks the sugar chains down even further to yield the simple sugar glucose. Unlike alpha-amylase, glucoamylase is produced by Aspergillus, a fungus, in a fermentation vat where one would likely see little balls of Aspergillus floating on the top.
    The third enzyme, glucose-isomerase, is very expensive. It converts glucose to a mixture of about 42 percent fructose and 50-52 percent glucose with some other sugars mixed in. While alpha-amylase and glucoamylase are added directly to the slurry, pricey glucose-isomerase is packed into columns and the sugar mixture is then passed over it. Inexpensive alpha-amylase and glucoamylase are used only once, glucose-isomerase is reused until it loses most of its activity.
    There are two more steps involved. First is a liquid chromatography step that takes the mixture to 90 percent fructose. Finally, this is back-blended with the original mixture to yield a final concentration of about 55 percent fructose–what the industry calls high fructose corn syrup.
    HFCS has the exact same sweetness and taste as an equal amount of sucrose from cane or beet sugar but it is obviously much more complicated to make, involving vats of murky fermenting liquid, fungus and chemical tweaking, all of which take place in one of 16 chemical plants located in the Corn Belt. Yet in spite of all the special enzymes required, HFCS is actually cheaper than sugar. It is also very easy to transport–it’s just piped into tanker trucks. This translates into lower costs and higher profits for food producers.
    The development of the HFCS process came at an opportune time for corn growers. Refinements of the partial hydrogenation process had made it possible to get better shortenings and margarines out of soybeans than corn. HFCS took up the slack as demand for corn oil margarine declined. Lysine, an amino acid, can be produced from the corn residue after the glucose is removed. This is the modus operandi of the food conglomerates–break down commodities into their basic components and then put them back together again as processed food.
    Today HFCS is used to sweeten jams, condiments like ketchup, and soft drinks. It is also a favorite ingredient in many so-called health foods. Four companies control 85 percent of the $2.6 billion business–Archer Daniels Midland, Cargill, Staley Manufacturing Co. and CPC International. In the mid-1990s, ADM was the object of an FBI probe into price fixing of three products–HFCS, citric acid and lysine–and consumers got a glimpse of the murky world of corporate manipulation.
    There’s a couple of other murky things that consumers should know about HFCS. According to a food technology expert, two of the enzymes used, alpha-amylase and glucose-isomerase, are genetically modified to make them more stable. Enzymes are actually very large proteins and through genetic modification specific amino acids in the enzymes are changed or replaced so the enzyme’s “backbone” won’t break down or unfold. This allows the industry to get the enzymes to higher temperatures before they become unstable.
    Consumers trying to avoid genetically modified foods should avoid HFCS. It is almost certainly made from genetically modified corn and then it is processed with genetically modified enzymes. I’ve seen some estimates claiming that virtually everything–almost 80 percent–of what we eat today has been genetically modified at some point. Since the use of HFCS is so prevalent in processed foods, those figures may be right.
    But there’s another reason to avoid HFCS. Consumers may think that because it contains fructose–which they associate with fruit, which is a natural food–that it is healthier than sugar. A team of investigators at the USDA, led by Dr. Meira Field, has discovered that this just ain’t so.
    Sucrose is composed of glucose and fructose. When sugar is given to rats in high amounts, the rats develop multiple health problems, especially when the rats were deficient in certain nutrients, such as copper. The researchers wanted to know whether it was the fructose or the glucose moiety that was causing the problems. So they repeated their studies with two groups of rats, one given high amounts of glucose and one given high amounts of fructose. The glucose group was unaffected but the fructose group had disastrous results. The male rats did not reach adulthood. They had anemia, high cholesterol and heart hypertrophy–that means that their hearts enlarged until they exploded. They also had delayed testicular development. Dr. Field explains that fructose in combination with copper deficiency in the growing animal interferes with collagen production. (Copper deficiency, by the way, is widespread in America.) In a nutshell, the little bodies of the rats just fell apart. The females were not so affected, but they were unable to produce live young.
    “The medical profession thinks fructose is better for diabetics than sugar,” says Dr. Field, “but every cell in the body can metabolize glucose. However, all fructose must be metabolized in the liver. The livers of the rats on the high fructose diet looked like the livers of alcoholics, plugged with fat and cirrhotic.”
    HFCS contains more fructose than sugar and this fructose is more immediately available because it is not bound up in sucrose. Since the effects of fructose are most severe in the growing organism, we need to think carefully about what kind of sweeteners we give to our children. Fruit juices should be strictly avoided–they are very high in fructose–but so should anything with HFCS.
    Interestingly, although HFCS is used in many products aimed at children, it is not used in baby formula, even though it would probably save the manufactueres a few pennies for each can. Do the formula makers know something they aren’t telling us? Pretty murky!
    About the author
    Linda Forristal, CCP, MTA is the author of Ode to Sucanat (1993) and Bulgarian Rhapsody (1998). Visit her website at Mother Linda's.
    There are almost always two sides to an argument, and certainly some individuals paint HFCS’s as a wonderful thing, cheaper than other sugars, superior to table sugar in giving baked goods a beautiful browned appearance, with a lower freezing point, and better texture in finished products like cookies and ice cream. Our plants probably don’t crave cookies and ice cream, but some will be tempted to use HFCS in their garden because it can be found easily and inexpensively in North America. That’s an issue we’ll try and revist as we continue to revise the 3LB’s Molasses Manual.
    more sweet and sticky
    Here’s another testimonial on the use of molasses in gardening, an excerpt from the book The Garden-Ville Method by Malcolm Beck.
    Molasses - Sweet & Super

    Molasses was one sweet treat we were never without when I was growing up. We put it on bread with butter for a snack. It was great on hot cornbread and really flavored up beans if stirred in the pot when they were very hot. My grandpa would eat molasses over cottage cheese every morning for breakfast, and he stayed healthy to his death at a very old age.
    Back then I would never have guessed that molasses would have any value in growing plants or use in insect control. My friend who grows organic cotton up in the high plains uses molasses and a nitrogen-fixing microbe as his only fertilizer. (Nitrogen fixing means the nitrogen is made available to plants as nutrients.) I asked him what the molasses did, and he said it made the microbes work better.
    I had to find out for myself, so I did a test. I used two containers of equal size with equal amounts of potting soil and the same number of rye grass seeds. One container was given only tap water; the other was given equal water with two tablespoons of molasses per gallon stirred in. After 8 weeks, the molasses watered plants were almost twice the size of the plants in the other container.
    I was amazed, but I didn’t understand how molasses could make that much difference. We had the compost in the potting soil tested and found that it contained some of the same free-nitrogen-fixing microbes that the cotton grower used. (He used an Agri-Gro product containing the microbes.) One of these nitrogen-fixing microbes is Azotobacter, a microbe that can fix nitrogen straight from the air without living on the root of a legume as long as it has a source of energy such as sugar or molasses. Both are rich in carbohydrates, a good source of energy. In lab tests, Dr. Louis M. Thompson discovered that if given sugar weekly, the Azotobacter could fix from the air the equivalent of a thousand pounds of nitrogen per acre in ten weeks.
    We recommend that molasses, 1 to 3 tablespoons, be added to each gallon of liquid fertilizer mix. It definitely makes a difference. It is also used as a binder in all of our dry fertilizer formulas.
    Every gardener has his or her own favorite fertilizer recipe. Both Howard Garrett and John Dromgoole have popular recipes that contain molasses and other organic materials. You can experiment with your favorites and come up with your own best recipe.
    I always foliar feed my fruit trees early each spring with fish emulsion and seaweed. Now I add molasses to the mix. The strangest thing I noticed when using molasses with the mix was that the fire ants would move out from under the trees. I also got reports from Houston that fire ants would move away from the lawns after an application of dry fertilizer that contained molasses.
    I got an opportunity to see if molasses really moved fire ants. In my vineyard, I had a 500 foot row of root stock vines cut back to a stump that needed grafting. The fire ants had made themselves at home along that row because of the drip pipe that kept the soil soft and gave them a good supply of water. The mounds averaged three feet apart. There was no way a person could work there without being eaten alive!
    I dissolved 4 tablespoons of molasses in each gallon of water and sprayed along the drip pipe. By the next day, the fire ants had moved out four feet in each direction. We were able to graft the vines without a single ant bothering us. With this success at moving the ants, I decided to spray the whole orchard and get rid of those pests. I learned, however, if the ants have no convenient place to move, they just stay where they are. I began wondering if the energy-rich molasses stimulate a soil microbe that the ants don’t like. This was the beginning of development of Garden-Ville Fire Ant Control.
    A friend of mine up in dairy country uses a hydro cyclone to separate the liquids from the solids in cow manure. He noticed when spraying the liquids on hay fields that the fire ants tended to disappear. Tests of our compost have shown it to contain insect pathogens. The manure liquids and the compost tea both had some results as ant killers. The two together worked a little better. We knew that dormant oil sprays killed some insects, and that citrus peel extracts were used to kill insects, so we decided to mix orange oil with molasses and liquid cow manure. After months of research, we finally found the correct blend that not only killed ants, but any insects. It even smelled okay and would not burn the leaves of plants. It quickly degraded into a good energy-rich soil conditioner.
    Needless to say, we offered our product to the market as Garden-Ville Fire Ant Control. We have many happy customers. You can even make your own if you don’t want to buy ours. More information is included in the article on fire ant control.
    The Garden-Ville Method - Lessons in Nature
    Sweet Wars Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back
    In a blow against fertilizer empire giants hell bent on world domination that might have been better titled, Sweet Wars - Episode IV: A New Hope, the 3LB’s first posted our Molasses Manual at Overgrow and Cannabis World close to five years ago. Since then it’s been reposted and regurgitated at dozens of websites across the world wide web. In our eyes, this was a significant victory for our small rebel alliance of educated organic growers in the battle against corporate domination in the world of Horticulture.
    We’ve all known the ag giant empire would attempt to discredit our efforts to teach growers. Just because a fertilizer or additive is advertised as some kind of special “magic bullet” for growers, it doesn’t mean there aren’t effective alternatives available at the supermarket or feed store, but please don’t remind the executives at Advanced Nutrients we are teaching that as gospel, it upsets two things. Their ulcers and their bottom line.
    The have let the 3lb’s know in no uncertain terms that they don’t like us telling growers that most, if not all, “carboload” products marketed to growers are really just an overpriced and overhyped repackaging of molasses. And now, in the AN forum at PlanetGanja, they’ve resorted to obvious attempts to mislead growers as a part of their effort to reap ever greater profits and market share for their “magic bullet” carboload product.
    Here’s the question that was asked of “Advanced” - the European distributor of AN’s product line:
    is carboload black trap molases? whats it consist of? i had a bottle way back and found it very sugar beet like. great stuff,but i found regular molasses to work similar.
    thanx in advanced.
    Despite the spelling and grammar errors, it would seem to be a legitimate question.
    Here’s the reply from “Advanced”:
    Carboload contains 5 simple and complex carbohydrates in the ratios that our favourite plants utilize. The ingredients are:
    Black strap molasses or black treacle is made from a blend of cane sugars.
    Almost any form of sugar would be a good additive but according to the R&D scientists at Advanced, the Carboload ingredients and ratios worked better.
    At the time “Advanced” originally posted that denial, we honestly didn’t notice. That post was made at PlanetGanja in Feburary, 2007, more than a year ago without much of anyone noticing. Then, last week, a friend of the flock brought it to the 3LB’s attention, and our rooster and hen research team of Foggy and Tweedy began to take a critical look at the purported ingredients of AN’s Carboload.
    At first glance we noticed one glaring problem, the listing of the ingredients Glucose and Dextrose. The R&D scientists from AN must be trying to pull the wool over somebody’s eyes, listing those as two separate ingredients in order like that, because glucose and dextrose are two different names for the same thing! At least they were smart enough to avoid wording it that way on their current product label, but they certainly aren’t above using synonyms in their ingredient list on marijuana message boards.
    Here’s a little blurb documenting glucose and dextrose as synonyms, just so you don’t have to take the 3LB’s word for any of the facts presented here:
    Definition of Dextrose
    Dextrose: Better known today as glucose, this sugar is the chief source of energy in the body. Glucose is chemically considered a simple sugar. It is the main sugar that the body manufactures. The body makes glucose from all three elements of food, protein, fat and carbohydrates, but in largest part from carbohydrates. Glucose serves as the major source of energy for living cells.
    It’s hard to believe that anybody worth their salt who has earned the title “scientist”, wouldn’t actually know that dextrose and glucose are synonymous. To confirm our suspicion, it took us a grand total of a minute and a single google search to find dozens of sources that document this simple truth about dextrose/glucose. With that in mind, we had no other real option than to conclude that this was an deliberate attempt to make AN’s Carboload ingredient list look longer and more impressive to the uninformed.
    It really doesn’t get any better the further we move down the list either. Every sugar on the list provided by “Advanced” is a plant derived sugar, all but Maltose are simple sugars, and there’s no reason they needed to try and hide that other than to try and mislead the public about the cost and effort that goes into manufacturing this product.
    Again, for the record, we’ll document those facts for our Cannabis Chronicles readers:
    Definition of Arabinose
    Arabinose: (Science: biochemistry, chemical) a pentose monosaccharide that occurs in both D and L configurations.
    D arabinose is the 2 epimer of D ribose, i.e. Differs from D ribose by having the opposite configuration at carbon 2. D arabinose occurs inter alia in the polysaccharide arabinogalactan, a neutral pectin of the cell wall of plants and in the metabolites cytosine arabinoside and adenine arabinoside.
    That’s the most “obscure” sugar on the “Advanced” list, and all that scientific speak might not be easy to decipher, so we’ll try to hit the high points here quickly. Arabinose is sugar that’s present in the cell walls of all plants. Arabinose is a pectin.
    That name might ring a bell, rather than being something exotic or uncommon, pectin is what grandma (and Welch’s) uses to thicken jams and preserves. Since pectins are something all plants seem to manufacture quite well on their own, we began to wonder if it’s use in Carboload might be to thicken a watered down product to seem to give it more substance?
    Definition of Maltose
    Maltose is made from two glucose units: Maltose or malt sugar is the least common disaccharide in nature. It is present in germinating grain, in a small proportion in corn syrup, and forms on the partial hydrolysis of starch. It is a reducing sugar. The two glucose units are joined by an acetal oxygen bridge in the alpha orientation. To recognize glucose look for the down or horizontal projection of the -OH on carbon # 4. See details on the galactose page towards the bottom.
    Maltose is the only sugar on the “Advanced” list that’s not a simple sugar, however it’s not anything terribly exotic, or even unique to AN’s Carboload product. Malted barley is one of the primary ingredients in the beer brewing process, and Earth Juice uses wheat malt as one of the ingredients in their “Catalyst” product.
    As was pointed out in the definition, it’s even present in Corn Syrup, which might very well explain it showing up in a plant Carboload product. Corn Syrups are often less expensive to procure than Molasses, adding one important ingredient for fertilizer manufacturers, an increase in their bottom line.
    Definition of Xylose
    xylose Pentose (five-carbon) sugar found in plant tissues as complex polysaccharide; 40% as sweet as sucrose. Also known as wood sugar.
    Definition of D-Xylose
    D-xylose, commonly called wood sugar, is a natural 5-carbon sugar (pentose) obtained from the xylan rich portion of hemicellulose from plants cell walls and fibre.
    In some circles, xylose is being touted as a “healthier” sugar than sucrose (common table sugar) and it is true that humans absorb xylose through a different mechanism than we do glucose or fructose (the two simple sugars that make up sucrose). However, that doesn’t mean it’s an exotic or costly ingredient in a carboload product, as one of the common dietary sources for xylose includes corn.
    That’s a little more of the story behind the attempts by the Ag empire to strike back at the growing number of individuals who prefer molasses as a sugar source for use as a plant fertilizer. When it’s all said and done, it would appear that the claims by Advanced Nutrients for their carboload product, that it isn’t solely molasses based, is likely true. By all accounts, including their own labeling, the majority of the sugars involved appear to be potentially directly related to, or derived from, corn syrup.
    A little common sense detective work by our rooster and hen research team leads us to believe that AN is very likely using some sort of corn syrup as a base for their carboload product, since the sugars present in carboload also are inherent in corn. We don’t believe that corn syrup derived sources of carbohydrates have any advantages over molasses based sweeteners, in fact quite the opposite.
    Corn sweeteners do not offer the rich mix of trace minerals offered by molasses. We can’t find any documented evidence that corn syrup will serve as a chelating agent like molasses. And, we’ve never heard about corn syrup deterring fire ants either. For more details about all those benefits of molasses, please read the other articles in the 3LB Molasses Manual.
    Farm smart everybody, live and love well, and remember, if you are learning as you grow, then you are growing too!
    Sweet Wars VI - HFCS Strikes Back
    High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) advocates will tell you that the high fructose corn syrup story is one of the most “revolutionary” in food science in the last few decades.1 Yet HFCS has been blamed for increases, outbreaks, and even epidemics, in human obesity. Some well respected scientists would like to link the ubiquitous nature of HFCS in our diet to increases in juvenile diabetes and other metabolic disorders.

    high fructose corn syrup
    Others, also well respected, will argue that not only is high fructose corn syrup cheaper than other sources of sugar, it’s actually superior to sucrose. It’s been said that HFCS produces better and more eye appealing breads and breakfast cereals, as well as superior cookies and cakes. So, why is there a problem, or controversy, and what might it all mean?
    Our primary interest here at the bird’s nest in researching and writing this article is to examine the potential of high fructose corn syrup as an alternative to molasses as a soil sweetener and fuel for the soil microherd. But, with a number of various controversies swirling around this sweet man made invention, we’ll need to examine the whole HFCS story in little greater detail.

    If you’ve had a sip of Coca-Cola or 7-Up, sampled the potato salad at a Blimpies or KFC, or eaten a sandwich with Ketchup or tartar sauce at almost any Canadian or U.S. fast food restaurant,
    you can be almost 100% positive that you’ve just consumed some High Fructose Corn Syrup. It’s everywhere it seems. High Fructose Corn Syrup shows up as an ingredient in a variety of salad dressings and sauces, brownies and pies.
    HFCS is an important ingredient in Mott’s Apple Sauce, McDonaldland Cookies, Taco Bell’s Carmel Apple Empanada, Subway’s Teriyaki Glazed Chicken Strips, and the Log Cabin Syrup served at Jack in the Box.2
    Believe it or not, the term High Fructose Corn Syrup is a sort of an oxymoron. Contrary to it’s name, HFCS itself isn’t necessarily especially high in fructose. Unaltered or natural corn syrup itself is almost entirely glucose, so at the time this enzymatically altered sweetener was developed, the addition of any fructose to the corn syrup equation resulted in a product labeled- High Fructose. Hyperbole and marketing aside, the final ratio of glucose to fructose found in manufactured HFCS is pretty similar to table sugar.

    fructose molecule
    Sucrose is the more scientific term for what you and I know as table sugar, and it is approximately 50% glucose and 50% fructose. The final ratios of fructose and glucose in commonly used High Fructose Corn Syrups can vary, for instance there is a HCFS42 that is 42% fructose, and a HCFS55 that is, you guessed it, 55% fructose.3
    As a matter of marketing, and for simplicity in use, high fructose corn syrup was developed and formulated to provide sweetness similar to table sugar. Beverage makers and food confectioners needed to be able to depend on HFCS to provide a similar level of sweetness as sucrose. This was considered to be an absolute necessity in order to guarantee that consumers would be unable to notice any differences in flavor or perceived sweetness.

    fructose molecule
    HFCS55 has sweetness equivalent to sucrose (table sugar). It’s used in many carbonated soft drinks in the United States and Canada. HFCS42 is somewhat less sweet, and is used in wide variety of products including fruit-flavored non-carbonated beverages and baked goods. HFCS is commonly used in products where its special characteristics such as ferment-ability, lower freezing point, surface browning, or flavor enhancement, could add perceived value to the finished product.4
    None of those facts sound very nefarious, do they? So why is it then that HFCS is demonized and blamed for so many maladies? It’s the production of HFCS that gets some folks upset, and it’s not just a single facet of production that’s problematic. The first problem literally begins with a kernel of corn.
    HFCS is generally made from transgenic (genetically modified / also known as a GMO - for genetically modified organism) corn, and that’s an issue in some circles. Some individuals worry about the long term health effects of the consumption of a vegetable that’s had foreign DNA inserted into it’s genetic code. Other’s worry about the almost inevitable escape of genetically modified genes from cultivation, and are concerned about the impact these artificially created genetics might have on wild plant populations. And finally, some ethicists take issue with the tight patent privileges associated with transgenic crops. It is illegal to save seed or otherwise breed or reuse GMO seed in any manner shape or form, effectively ending all traditional seed saving practices.
    The actual growing part of production doesn’t have to involve transgenic organisms though. While GMO corn is normally used to produce HFCS, it can be produced from corn that hasn’t been genetically altered. But, that’s where the issue of the enzymatic process used to create High Fructose Corn Syrup rears it’s ugly head. At least one genetically modified enzyme is necessary as a part of the actual manufacturing process of High Fructose Corn Syrup, making it’s use in any product termed natural or organic quite questionable.
    I believe the makers of 7-up were even sued over that product’s “All Natural” labeling in the USA, simply because it is sweetened by HFCS. It appears that beverage’s labeling has changed to - “100% Natural Flavors”. In my eyes this is a sign that despite the US government’s lack of standards concerning the word “natural” on foods, that labeling HFCS products as “natural” is too big a stretch for the admittedly plastic regulators under the current Bush administration.
    With all of that in mind, here’s one more quick look at a few of the dueling sugars that are part of Sweet Wars, the following primarily derived from Wikipedia’s article on HFCS.
    Cane and beet sugar
    Cane sugar and Beet sugar are both relatively pure sucrose. While the glucose and fructose which are the two components of HFCS are monosaccharides, sucrose is a disaccharide composed of glucose and fructose linked together with a relatively weak glycosidic bond. A molecule of sucrose (with a chemical formula of C12H22O11) can be broken down into a molecule of glucose (C6H12O6) plus a molecule of fructose (also C6H12O6 — an isomer of glucose) in a weakly acidic environment. Sucrose is broken down during digestion into fructose and glucose through hydrolysis by the enzyme sucrase, by which the body regulates the rate of sucrose breakdown. Without this regulation mechanism, the body has less control over the rate of sugar absorption into the bloodstream.

    sugar beet feild

    suger beet
    The fact that sucrose is composed of glucose and fructose units chemically bound complicates the comparison between cane sugar and HFCS. The accuracy of saying that sucrose is “composed of 50% glucose and 50% fructose” depends on the context and point of view. Sucrose, glucose and fructose are unique, distinct molecules. Sucrose is broken down into its constituent monosaccharides - namely fructose and glucose - in weakly acidic environments by a process called inversion. This same process occurs in the stomach and in the small intestine during the digestion of sucrose into fructose and glucose. People with sucrase deficiency cannot digest (break down) sucrose, and thus exhibit sucrose intolerance.
    Both HFCS and sucrose have approximately 4 kcal per gram of solid if the HFCS is dried; HFCS has approximately 3 kcal per gram in its liquid form [8].
    Honey is a mixture of different types of sugars, water, and small amounts of other compounds. Honey typically has a fructose/glucose ratio similar to HFCS 55, as well as containing some sucrose and other sugars. Honey, HFCS and sucrose have the same number of calories, having approximately 4 kcal per gram of solid; honey and HFCS both have about 3 kcal per gram in liquid form.

    Maple syrup
    Maple syrup is a sweetener made from the sap of maple trees. In Canada and the U.S. it is most often eaten with pancakes, waffles, french toast, cornbread or ice cream. It is sometimes used as an ingredient in baking, the making of candy (confection), preparing desserts, or as a sugar source and flavoring agent in making beer. Sucrose is the most prevalent sugar in maple syrup.

    Maple harvest
    Sweet sorghum
    Sweet sorghum is any of the many varieties of sorghum, a cane-like plant with a high sugar content. Sweet sorghum will thrive under drier and warmer conditions than many other crops and is grown primarily for forage, silage, and sugar production. Sweet sorghum syrup is called “molasses” or “sorghum molasses” in some regions of the U.S., but the term molasses more properly refers to a different sweet syrup, made as a byproduct of sugarcane or sugar beet production.
  4. sticky this!
  5. Revanche21

    Revanche21 Registered+

    do you flush after doing so?

    or do you give the the molasuss straight up until harvest?
  6. texas grass

    texas grass Registered+

    you can give molasses up til harvest
  7. NaughtyDreadz

    NaughtyDreadz Registered+

    uh.. wouldn't you still taste the N????
  8. texas grass

    texas grass Registered+

    there really isnt a N rating, its packed full of sugars and a good carbon source. not nitrates like in chemical ferts
  9. NaughtyDreadz

    NaughtyDreadz Registered+

    ah!!!!! bach.....
  10. Raftastic

    Raftastic Registered+

    At what stage should you introduce Molasses ?

    I got Lyles Black Treacle,i think it's the same as your BSM it's only 37p for 454g & it makes wonderfull Bonfire Toffee :jointsmile:
  11. GreenLeaf420

    GreenLeaf420 Banned

    Hell yeah when you read the back of SWEET. It has mollases and says it helps during the trasnition Phase as well as Flower...

    Good Thread:thumbsup:
  12. Revanche21

    Revanche21 Registered+

  13. Aspire420

    Aspire420 Registered+

    I got a gallon of horticultural molasses for 9.50 USD with tax. It smells oddly sweet and is the color of rich composted soil. I have a feeling it is great for fortification and microbes. For the price I am satisfied. I guess the kelp tea and the molasses should work partially as a catalyst....I feel like I am missing something in that equation though. :wtf:

    I also read that too high of a temperature for brewing molasses kills the essentail organsims. Something like over 85 degrees and it needs to breathe. I figure it is better to buy the pre-mix until I get good at the tea.

    I do not use a bubbler for tea brew for now. I got a pitcher at a dollar store and I cup scoop the dry mix into a woman's knee high stocking. I tie a knot and place it in the covered vented pitcher. The tea bag looks like a soft tube. I poor hot water onto it and usually adds up to 32 ounces and makes a bad ass tea. I got a spoon to mix and in about 12 hours it is completely brewed. The bag can be used again but for less water - that's for kelp but pretty sure it works for smaller grains too.
  14. konvikt419

    konvikt419 Registered+

    there are some ery interesting things pointed out on here i am planning o put ino practice so any more info would be great
  15. veggii

    veggii Registered+

    so this should've had a sticky awhile back when it was first posted whats the holdup? definately a first class article

    and I saw a mention of table sugar but thats all I saw anyone got more info on using table sugar? 1tsp to a gal?

    texasgrass nice article but I noticed it was kinda compressed together instead of having the chapters separated like the original articile (for future reference) makes reading the post 95% easier having the space inbetween as one gets lost in the huge chapter.
    "help I'm stuck in there can't find my way out" lol
  16. veggii

    veggii Registered+

    It would be very nice if more growers could chime in on problems&fixes from using molasses, as this person appears too be the only person thats ever had a problem using molasses,and i believe alot more growers have had problems with molasses that way us noobi's can fix things if we run into problems with molasses as this thread highly recommends, alot will try too use it.

    can you please give more info on plain white sugar table sugar , how much to use 1 teaspoon per gallon? what kind of problems can you run into?

    also texasgrass I wrote in my above about the article chapters compressed together makes hard too read I wrote the wrong word I meant paragraph's
    I couldn't remember the word last nite paragraph's paragraph's paragraph's lol man my memory is jacked up .:wtf:
  17. the image reaper

    the image reaper Registered+

    I don't think honey would be a suitable substitute for molasses ... honey is nature's 'antibiotic', it could kill beneficial organisms in the solution/soil, I would think ... :jointsmile:
  18. ToPHeR31

    ToPHeR31 Registered+

    Ok Since My plant doesnt take 1 gal of water everytime...about how much molasses should I give it? I know you should start with like 1 teaspoon per gallon then work up to 1 tablespoon and so on...but If Im only watering my plant with about 250mL every other day how much molasses should i add?
  19. lunarose

    lunarose Registered+

    Hi, Try 1/4 teaspoon to one quart.
  20. fluid69

    fluid69 Registered+

    this thread answered all my molasses ?'s. thanks for such an informative essay.

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