What is buffering?

When we talk about buffering, we are not referring to buffering our shoes! We refer to a natural agricultural cleaning process which we call buffering. Buffering of coconut substrate, also known as coco or coir! In our case, Simply Organic S.L., we, use coconut husks from a coconut food by-product, of which, we strategically buffer due to the chemical combination of calcium with the sodium salts inherent to the coconut fibre. Our Simply Organic S.L. buffering process comes with a KOGuarantee, which in a nutshell, is a product compliance certification.

So, before we delve deeper into what is buffering and true-buffered, let us understand a bit about coconut substrates and why it is necessary. Coconut substrates retain calcium due to the high cation-exchange capacity of the substrate. So, for this reason, we chemically buffer UGro COCO substrates with calcium nitrate, thus achieving that the sodium and potassium salts are insoluble in water, therefore, unassimilable to the plant.

We, Simply Organic S.L., design, process in 3 different ways, which are True-Buffered, Buffered-charged and Non-buffered. Our True-Buffered range is our USP and these products are our best-selling products, to include – UGro Plug, Cube, Small, XL, Slab, Pure Professional Air, Pure Professional Max Air.


  • Washing the coir in fresh, clean water to drag a large part of the salts by dissolution.
  • We chemically buffer the coir using calcium nitrate (to ensure the sodium and potassium salts are insoluble in water, therefore unassimilable to your plant). In True Buffered range, we wash for a second time in fresh water, dragging by leaching a large part of salts commonly known as chemical buffering.


Following a true-buffered process, the coir substrate has a EC of 0.4mS/cm in a measurement of 1 volume of substrates in 1.5 volumes of water, so after this process, the decomposition of coconut organic matter releases sodium salts, so liquid fertilisers for coconut carry a calcium reinforcement in the composition, so there is always calcium available.

Let’s look into buffered (buffered-charged) products, which include; UGro Pure Basic, UGro Pure Perlite, UGro Pure Superior Light Mix.


  • Washing the UGro COCO (coir) in fresh water to drag a large part of the salts by dissolution.
  • Chemical buffering UGro COCO (Coir) with calcium nitrate.

Why calcium nitrate? We chemically buffer with calcium nitrate to ensure the sodium and potassium salts are insoluble in water, therefore unassimilable to your plant.


As we omit the second wash in our Buffered-charged product range, the EC of the coir substrate is higher as it is around 0.8-1mS/cm in a measurement of 1 volume of substrate in 1.5 volume of water. In the first and second irrigations you should have an EC of 0.8 and then revert to normal levels. We recommend that you start off using a small container, then transplant the plant to a larger container.

Additionally, if calcium over fertilisation occurs in the first phases of the plant development, spray chelated iron and water at EC of 0.5 for the first and second irrigations and if possible, avoid calcium in the mixture.

Now that you understand buffered-charged and true-buffered you can also check out our non- buffered range; UGro XL Organic and UGro Pure Professional Organic. Of which, are 100% organic substrates with no additives or preservatives or buffering. UGro XL Organic and UGro Pure Professional Organic are simply and organically washed with fresh clean water and sieved to ensure the highest-quality organic product carrying Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI) certification.

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