The 2019-2020 winter grow is off to a great start! I have learned my my mistakes last year, and am successfully achieving a goal of mine: DIY Aeroponic Growing.
Last year, I abandoned this goal due to loc out and garden demands (Read More Here).
Summary Of Mistakes:
I was not measuring the PPM nor the PH of the nutrient water in the tub. Instead, I was adding nutrients on a weekly schedule according to the manufacturers feed schedule. This rendered a nutrient mixture that literally was off the scale (<1000PPM); AKA Loc Out. I ended up draining the tub and converting to a Kratky tub, but did not give up on my goal.
Summary of Fixes:
I have cut the mixture rates in half, measure the PH/PPMs regularly, and frequently-adjust the ON/OFF repeat cycle timer to match the plant's water consumption; I am err-ing on the side of dry. This is making a HUGE difference, and I am finally experience the benefits of aeroponic growing; expedited growth (see comparison photo above).
I am using a bigger water pump! This change was for two reasons. First reason was to increase the water level. Second was to get the manifold closer to the cups. The pump is WAY over qualified for what it's doing.. but its still doing the job wonderfully!
The air-stone quantity has changed as well from last year. Last year I had only one, This time I have 4! It's over kill, I know—but, I don't have an algae issue at all!
My vermifarm is setup and producing wonderful worm leachate. I am diluting and adding it with my nutrients. You can learn more about this here.
The final change from last year is my media setup. Last year, I used a custom soil/perlite blend. This year, the bottom 65% of the cups are Hydroton and then a .5" soil layer is atop that. The soil is not necessary, but I am using it as a visual cue to how wet the roots are getting. #ProTip
Air Pump Setting
The air-pump kicks on every 30 min for 15 min. I find this is the perfect balance of water surface disturbance vs. energy consumption
Water Pump Setting
The water-pump OFF setting is constantly changing because I am adjusting against the dampness of the soil. If its too damp, I increase the OFF time. If it's too dry, I decrease the OFF time. Currently, It is set to 5 sec on, 35 min OFF.
(1x) HDX 27 gal. Storage Tote
(1x) HDX 27 gal. Storage Tote - Lid (drilled for net cups)
(1x) EcoPlus 1267 Submersible Pump
(4x) Air stones (any-kind works)
(1x) Clone Sprayer-Manifold (something like this) (can be made out of PVC-cheaper)
(6x) Net Cups
I took a hiatus, people, but now i'm back!!!... for this post.
As September comes to a close, its time to look back at the summer and recap some of the new flowers in the garden this year! Above is a gallery of the highlight photos.
I have not had a chance to test any new products over the summer. So for now, just enjoy some garden shots!
This winter, however, is stacking up to be a great testing year! Stay tuned!
Sorry for missing the second posting of April. It was a hectic month from starting back in school to starting the summer garden! Thankfully, as promised, the April showers have brought May flowers. I have a few new product reviews I will be publishing in the second posting of the month, so stay tuned!!
Winter Grow Finalizing:
Oh!! Things have changed in the garage (see picture). I have reduced the garage to one DE light. I will be reducing this even more to a new California Lightworks Solar System 550 LED to finish out the propagation (review coming). After the propagation finishes, I will be done with growing in the garage for the summer. Thank God because my electricity bills could use a break.
The summer garden is tilled, planted and growing. This weekend was the last of the to-do: plant 25 tomato plants!! #NotKidding. #Canning. The only final plans are to install a drip system. I have introduced the Kratky tubs outside as a continuation of my experiments from inside. This will be interesting with the increased heat presence from the sun on the black tubs. This year we are also introducing a mason bee house. I have already watched them enter and exit. Can't wait for all the help this year!
Due to the state legalities of growing cannabis in Oregon, #GrOregon, I am confined to a 4-cannabis-plant- setup for my recreational purposes. On my PDX hydro to-do list is to get my medical card; never enough time in the month. Till then, I have 2 Pink Kush Auto CBD plants going and currently propagating the remaining 2 cannabis plants. There were many strains to choose from for the remaining plants, but I ended up going with Subterfuge #1 and Pine Tar Kush IBL from CSI Humboldt.
This year is pretty special because over the winter garden I bred my first genetic line. I combined a male Huckleberry Kush V3 from Dynasty Genetics with a feminized Tangerine Dreams Auto from Barney's Farm Seeds. I call it Fruit Salad! #FruitSalad. The seed germination test was very successful with a crack rate of 100% (3 seeds). Will conduct one more test before locking in the vault.
If you are a local PDX breeder/grower:
Fruit Salad seeds will be for free/trade in the near future! Send me a message or leave a comment so I can save you some!
I have been farming every.damn.day for the past two years; between indoor and outdoor gardens. As I head into my third consecutive year of continual gardening, I am as excited as ever! I'm happy to report that seed spending this year was kept under $100... barely.
Here is the list of new seeds this year that you can follow along with:
(use your browser's search function on seedman.com to find these seeds under the link)
If you have a plant you are curious about, but don't have the space or green thumb... leave a comment below and I will get to growing it! #GrowVicariously