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Hot Set Vb Com Hydroponic

Description:
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As I mention something to share
with us, please submit it at on the
cover page, this website is to be
informative in providing articles
written by myself as well as anyone
else who wishes to contribute. If
you have something to share with
us, please submit it at the e-mail
address on the website. Our
objective is to provide articles
monthly. We shall also keep you up
on new products for hobby
hydroponics. Within several
months we expect to introduce a
new hobby hydroponic kitchen
unit. It will be available for
purchase through this website. We Photo 10

shall announce conference dates and places that may be of interest to our readers.
Although materials presented here may be applicable to commercial and hobby growers,
the emphasis is toward hobbyists.

systems vs. Soilless Culture:

There are really two forms of hydroponics, soilless culture and true hydroponics.
Because we include in hydroponic systems those that use substrates, we must make it
clear that while correctly they are termed “soilless culture,” principles of hydroponics
apply. Therefore, we generally speak of hydroponics to include not only the true
hydroponics (water culture) but all systems using substrates (soilless culture). Pure
hydroponics by definition means “water working.” The word comes from the Greek
words hydro (“water”) and ponos (“labor”) – literally “water working.” These include
water (solution) culture, nutrient film technique (NFT), floating or raft culture, and
aeroponics. Aeroponics is a form of hydroponics whereby the nutrient solution is
provided to bare roots suspended in a growing chamber or channel (photo 1). The
solution is sprayed from below the roots in a fine mist. These aeroponic systems in
general are more complex than soilless methods. When we design and set up hobby
hydroponic systems we should lean toward simplicity to avoid technical challenges
within the system. Such simple systems include soilless and some water culture systems.
peatlite of Hydroponics:

Hydroponics is a science that can be applied at many levels of simplicity or complexity.


Your potted houseplants, such as foliage plants and flowering plants, are in a soilless
culture system. They use a “peatlite” mixture of peat, perlite and/or vermiculite for
their medium. These plants are grown in greenhouses using a nutrient solution fed by
drip or ebb & flow irrigation systems. With ebb & flow the nutrient solution is
periodically flooded at the base of the potted plants followed by complete drainage.
When you purchase potted houseplants you will need to feed them plant food frequently
in order to keep them thriving. After they have left the greenhouse or garden center
they will no longer receive the food normally provided to them by a hydroponic system.
The point is that the growing of individual plants in a pot with a soilless substrate is
hydroponics in a fairly simple form. This is in effect hobby hydroponics.

Hydroponics in its simplest form may be applied to low income areas of the World. I
have seen this in Peru. No equipment requiring electricity is needed provided the people
are willing to spend a little time every day to irrigate their plants manually. Mr. Alfredo
Delfin and staff at the Universidad Nacional Agraria La Molina have assisted low-income
families to produce fresh vegetables using basic soilless and raft culture systems.These
projects have been put together as roof-top gardens (photo 2) on public buildings as
well as in people’s back yards. Discarded plastic containers and tires were filled with a
soilless substrate of rice hulls and ground coconut husks (coco coir) (photos 3 & 4).

These are watered several times a day with a nutrient solution prepared from a
formulation developed by the University. Such basic systems of hydroponics exemplify
how the science may be applied in a simple manner.

Of course, we can get highly technical with hydroponics as we see in greenhouse


operations (photos 5 & 6) and its use under zero gravity on the space station (photos 7
& 8). This versatility of hydroponics makes it a very fascinating and rewarding hobby. It
will produce vegetables for you at all stages of complexity. You can begin with simple
systems and develop more complex ones to suit your needs and interest (photos 9 & 10).

All will give you a sense of accomplishment as you produce some of your own vegetables
such as lettuce, herbs, tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers and ornamentals. As you gain
experience you can learn more about hydroponic culture from hydroponic forums on the
Internet as well as attending conferences held annually by hydroponic societies,
universities, and private suppliers of hydroponic components. Many books are available
also, including mine shown here on the website, that will teach you both the basics and
more, should you wish to develop your own nutrients and systems. You may start with
simple systems and work your way up to more sophisticated systems, developing them
yourself or purchasing them from hydroponic outlets.

Conditions to Hobby Hydroponics:

Two limiting environmental factors on yields are light and temperature assuming that
nutrition is provided at relatively optimum levels. Hobby hydroponic systems are
generally operated in the environment of your home. The choice of light quality and
intensity is important since natural sunlight will not be available. You want at least 5500
lux (510 foot candles) of light for a period of 14 to 16 hours per day. High-intensity
discharge (HID) lighting is preferred over fluorescent as its quality and intensity is
better. Within this category of lights, the metal halide (MH) light with a wider spectrum
is better for indoor growing than the high-pressure sodium (HPS) ones. We want about
60 watts of light per square foot of growing area. Calculate the wattage of light required
by multiplying 60 watts by the total growing area. Such lights, complete with reflectors
and ballasts, may cost from $600 to $800 depending upon the wattage. Please refer to
my book “Hobby Hydroponics” for more information on lighting.

Temperature in your home generally is favorable to most growing. However, if you have
a larger hydroponic unit in a spare room or basement where you can control the
temperature apart from the rest of the home, you can achieve more optimum ranges
for your plants. Night temperatures should be about 5 to 10 F. less than day
temperatures. For tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers a good temperature range is 65 F
at night and 75 F during the day. For cool-season crops like lettuce the night
temperature should be about 55 F and the day 60 to 65 F. Herbs will tolerate a wider
range of temperatures than the above crops. During the summer with hot outside
daytime temperatures your crops will benefit from air conditioning to keep
temperatures within these ranges. However, during the summer you could also move
your hydroponic system onto the patio or balcony or even in the back yard and take
advantage of the natural sunlight and temperatures.

Plants growing outside receive ambient carbon dioxide levels of about 300 ppm (part
per million). Levels in your house may be lower than that, especially in the winter
months when outside ventilation is at a minimum. In such cases it would be beneficial
to enrich the atmosphere with carbon dioxide from a small generator that operates on
natural gas. These small units cost from $350 to over $500 depending upon their capacity
which is a function of the volume of air in your growing room. Some modern homes may
exchange the air in the house efficiently through the central heating-cooling system. In
that case carbon dioxide levels may be adequate without enrichment. However, to
achieve higher crop yields, carbon dioxide enrichment up to 1200 ppm will be beneficial.

Articles:

In future articles we shall discuss cultural methods of caring for your plants, pest
management, varieties suitable to hydroponic culture, etc. In addition, if you have any
particular topics you wish to learn about, please contact me and I shall look into the
possibility of discussing the subject. The intention is to provide you with useful
information on all aspects of hydroponics from nutrition to methods of hydroponic
growing.
Photo 1

Photo 2

Photo 3
Photo 4

Photo 5

Photo 6
Photo 7

Photo 8

Photo 9
As I mentioned on the cover page, this website is
to be informative in providing articles written by
myself as well as anyone else who wishes to
contribute. If you have something to share with us,
please submit it at the e-mail address on the
website. Our objective is to provide articles
monthly. We shall also keep you up on new
products for hobby hydroponics. Within several
months we expect to introduce a new hobby
hydroponic kitchen unit. It will be available for
purchase through this website. We shall announce
conference dates and places that may be of
interest to our readers. Although materials
presented here may be applicable to commercial
and hobby growers, the emphasis is toward
hobbyists.
Photo 10

Hydroponics vs. Soilless Culture:

There are really two forms of hydroponics, soilless culture and true hydroponics.
Because we include in hydroponic systems those that use substrates, we must make it
clear that while correctly they are termed “soilless culture,” principles of hydroponics
apply. Therefore, we generally speak of hydroponics to include not only the true
hydroponics (water culture) but all systems using substrates (soilless culture). Pure
hydroponics by definition means “water working.” The word comes from the Greek
words hydro (“water”) and ponos (“labor”) – literally “water working.” These include
water (solution) culture, nutrient film technique (NFT), floating or raft culture, and
aeroponics. Aeroponics is a form of hydroponics whereby the nutrient solution is
provided to bare roots suspended in a growing chamber or channel (photo 1). The
solution is sprayed from below the roots in a fine mist. These aeroponic systems in
general are more complex than soilless methods. When we design and set up hobby
hydroponic systems we should lean toward simplicity to avoid technical challenges
within the system. Such simple systems include soilless and some water culture systems.

Application of Hydroponics:

Hydroponics is a science that can be applied at many levels of simplicity or complexity.


Your potted houseplants, such as foliage plants and flowering plants, are in a soilless
culture system. They use a “peatlite” mixture of peat, perlite and/or vermiculite for
their medium. These plants are grown in greenhouses using a nutrient solution fed by
drip or ebb & flow irrigation systems. With ebb & flow the nutrient solution is
periodically flooded at the base of the potted plants followed by complete drainage.
When you purchase potted houseplants you will need to feed them plant food frequently
in order to keep them thriving. After they have left the greenhouse or garden center
they will no longer receive the food normally provided to them by a hydroponic system.
The point is that the growing of individual plants in a pot with a soilless substrate is
hydroponics in a fairly simple form. This is in effect hobby hydroponics.

Hydroponics in its simplest form may be applied to low income areas of the World. I
have seen this in Peru. No equipment requiring electricity is needed provided the people
are willing to spend a little time every day to irrigate their plants manually. Mr. Alfredo
Delfin and staff at the Universidad Nacional Agraria La Molina have assisted low-income
families to produce fresh vegetables using basic soilless and raft culture systems.These
projects have been put together as roof-top gardens (photo 2) on public buildings as
well as in people’s back yards. Discarded plastic containers and tires were filled with a
soilless substrate of rice hulls and ground coconut husks (coco coir) (photos 3 & 4).

These are watered several times a day with a nutrient solution prepared from a
formulation developed by the University. Such basic systems of hydroponics exemplify
how the science may be applied in a simple manner.

Of course, we can get highly technical with hydroponics as we see in greenhouse


operations (photos 5 & 6) and its use under zero gravity on the space station (photos 7
& 8). This versatility of hydroponics makes it a very fascinating and rewarding hobby. It
will produce vegetables for you at all stages of complexity. You can begin with simple
systems and develop more complex ones to suit your needs and interest (photos 9 & 10).

All will give you a sense of accomplishment as you produce some of your own vegetables
such as lettuce, herbs, tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers and ornamentals. As you gain
experience you can learn more about hydroponic culture from hydroponic forums on the
Internet as well as attending conferences held annually by hydroponic societies,
universities, and private suppliers of hydroponic components. Many books are available
also, including mine shown here on the website, that will teach you both the basics and
more, should you wish to develop your own nutrients and systems. You may start with
simple systems and work your way up to more sophisticated systems, developing them
yourself or purchasing them from hydroponic outlets.

Conditions Suitable to Hobby Hydroponics:


Two limiting environmental factors on yields are light and temperature assuming that
nutrition is provided at relatively optimum levels. Hobby hydroponic systems are
generally operated in the environment of your home. The choice of light quality and
intensity is important since natural sunlight will not be available. You want at least 5500
lux (510 foot candles) of light for a period of 14 to 16 hours per day. High-intensity
discharge (HID) lighting is preferred over fluorescent as its quality and intensity is
better. Within this category of lights, the metal halide (MH) light with a wider spectrum
is better for indoor growing than the high-pressure sodium (HPS) ones. We want about
60 watts of light per square foot of growing area. Calculate the wattage of light required
by multiplying 60 watts by the total growing area. Such lights, complete with reflectors
and ballasts, may cost from $600 to $800 depending upon the wattage. Please refer to
my book “Hobby Hydroponics” for more information on lighting.

Temperature in your home generally is favorable to most growing. However, if you have
a larger hydroponic unit in a spare room or basement where you can control the
temperature apart from the rest of the home, you can achieve more optimum ranges
for your plants. Night temperatures should be about 5 to 10 F. less than day
temperatures. For tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers a good temperature range is 65 F
at night and 75 F during the day. For cool-season crops like lettuce the night
temperature should be about 55 F and the day 60 to 65 F. Herbs will tolerate a wider
range of temperatures than the above crops. During the summer with hot outside
daytime temperatures your crops will benefit from air conditioning to keep
temperatures within these ranges. However, during the summer you could also move
your hydroponic system onto the patio or balcony or even in the back yard and take
advantage of the natural sunlight and temperatures.

Plants growing outside receive ambient carbon dioxide levels of about 300 ppm (part
per million). Levels in your house may be lower than that, especially in the winter
months when outside ventilation is at a minimum. In such cases it would be beneficial
to enrich the atmosphere with carbon dioxide from a small generator that operates on
natural gas. These small units cost from $350 to over $500 depending upon their capacity
which is a function of the volume of air in your growing room. Some modern homes may
exchange the air in the house efficiently through the central heating-cooling system. In
that case carbon dioxide levels may be adequate without enrichment. However, to
achieve higher crop yields, carbon dioxide enrichment up to 1200 ppm will be beneficial.

Future Articles:
In future articles we shall discuss cultural methods of caring for your plants, pest
management, varieties suitable to hydroponic culture, etc. In addition, if you have any
particular topics you wish to learn about, please contact me and I shall look into the
possibility of discussing the subject. The intention is to provide you with useful
information on all aspects of hydroponics from nutrition to methods of hydroponic
growing.