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Question and Answer Page 24

Subjects

rock wool construction board grow rocks similar to hydrocorn? 4"PVC standing vertical
stuff used to lower ph in aquariums Gurgling Bucket: How's it work? plants are wilting badly.
"nft" how do i anchor the plant 11 plant garden downloadable file yellowing leaves on plants.
(pok choy) wilt faster than soil grown how many water cycles per day 3 LITER BOTTLES?
Date:
24 Dec 1999
Time:
20:49:49

Comments

I have a rock wool construction board that was given to me. Can I strip the backing off both sides and use this as my hydroponic media after rinsing it?

Even though it basically is the same material it isn't used in growing plants because of building codes they have to treat it with fire retardant. Plants don't like fire retardant. 

Date:
25 Dec 1999
Time:
02:08:12

Comments

To Ron I know you are a hydro man but i was wondering if you could answer a soil question for me. Is sodium biphosphate ok to lower the ph in water before I water my plants in soil. This is the same stuff used to lower ph in aquariums. I called my local brew and grow and the guy said if I was using this in dirt it would be ok. But the sodium part Makes me worry about what's in it. THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIME

You can use just about anything with soil because unlike hydroponics soil has a buffer from the chemical reaction to the roots. You have more time to correct your problem because of this buffer. With hydroponics you have to fix imbalances right away because the nutrients go strait to the plant roots.

Date:
26 Dec 1999
Time:
10:36:00
Remote User:
 

Comments

i want to start a "nft" how do i anchor the plant inside the pvc pipe?

The plants that are usually grown in NFT are short type plants like lettuce, strawberries, and most herbs & spices. Plastic baskets are used to hold the plants.

Date:
26 Dec 1999
Time:
17:30:20

Comments

dear ron,
i have been doing hydroponic veggie growing for 2 months only but i noticed that my hydroponic veggie (pok choy) wilt faster than soil grown.
one friend of mine attribute it to the growing condition of hydroponics which is water abundant. once its harvested, the water loss is too fast for it to cope up that is why it wilts faster.
can you please confirm this and what remedy can be done with this problem ?
Stanley Ho

I don't know what pok choy is but may be you can stick them in a water vase like flowers until use.

 

Date:
27 Dec 1999
Time:
16:13:59

Comments

are the grow rocks you talk about the same ,or similar to hydrocorn?

Yes grow rocks is the generic name and hydrocorn is a brand name. It's all a man made clay fired ceramic material. It's also added to concrete instead of stone to make it light weight. 

Date:
29 Dec 1999
Time:
05:48:51

Comments

Ron or anyone else,

Have you had luck with "wick" feeding, i.e., a reservoir of solution feeding plants? I think the typical aggregate is perlite vermiculite. If it would work, it would solve some problems for me.
tj

Date:
29 Dec 1999
Time:
12:03:28

Comments

Gurgling Bucket: How's it work? In the diagram for the air pump bucket it shows a 36 inch hose from an air pump going into the reservoir attached to a 1/4"tee. The "up" part of the tee has a 28 inch hose attached to it that goes up and over the medium. The third end of the tee is open and vents into the nutrient tank. How does this supply nutrient up to the medium? If air is pumped into the tee, it will blow into the nutrient and bubble up to the surface of the fluid in the tank. How does the solution rise up the 28 inch hose to the top of the medium?

 I saw a 2 bucket hydro garden powered by an air pump at a grow store but it had a tree growing in it so I couldn't look inside. So I went home and what is called reverse manufacturing I tried a few designs and came up with what worked for me. Try it, you will be surprised how well it works. 
Ask a physics teacher how it works. I don't know. I slept through that part of the class. I use what is known in the unscientific community as trial and error. I keep trying until I get all the errors out and the garden works.

Date:
29 Dec 1999
Time:
12:06:54

Comments

Can you please make the 11 plant garden plans into a downloadable file and make it available on your site? I can print each .htm page, but can't print or save the pictures (.jpg) you have posted on them. Thanks

All you have to do is ask. Click here.

Date:
29 Dec 1999
Time:
18:04:58

Comments

is your 11 plant system a flood and drain system or a continuous flow system if ebb and flow how many cycles per day for both veg and flower and how long after filled do you drain them?

It's an ebb and flow. Let the water rise about half way up the bottles, making sure the roots get a good watering, but don't let the water go higher than the top of the medium. The over flow pipe keeps that from happening if it is set at the correct height.
Once the roots are watered, about every 20 or 30 minutes with grow rocks, the water should be drained right away. The overflow pipe allows you to water longer because most timers only have a 15 or 30 minute on time. But by know means do you have to water longer than it takes to wet the roots. A good cycle timer is a must for ebb flow gardening. 

Date:
01 Jan 2000
Time:
08:00:48

Comments

Dear Ron, I have noticed photos of strawberry plants growing in what appears to be 4"PVC standing vertical (the PVC pipe was vertical). Any thoughts on this? I wonder what media they are growing in? I also wonder if they are pumping the solution to the top and just letting it run down the pipe? The plants appeared to be planted in holes in the side of the pipe. Looks like you would lose solution as it ran down through the planting holes. Obviously, the holes would have to be small to keep media from falling out. Your thoughts on this would be appreciated. This method would save space if it is effective.

I seen the same method at Epcot at Disney World. The plants are in those little plastic baskets and are stuck in the holes periodically up the pipe. Once the plants are root bound that should prevent leaks. The water can just drip from the top down to wet the roots but a more efficient system would be to run low pressure misters from top to bottom inside your 4" pipes.  

Date:
01 Jan 2000
Time:
13:16:37

Comments

happy new year

Date:
01 Jan 2000
Time:
15:11:41

Comments

Happy Y2K!

Two questions/1 comment if you don't mind...

1) Don't the bottles and reservoirs need to be opaque to minimize algae growth?

Yes

2) Where did you get the bottles (1 gal and 2 liter)?

At the grocery store.

Just a little bitty nit-pick. Could you reverse the text vs. background color scheme on the .jpg pics? It uses a lot of ink that way. Love this website! It rocks!!!!!

Want me to brush your teeth too?

Chuckster

Date:
01 Jan 2000
Time:
16:54:34

Comments

I am growing strawberries in an NFT system but am having limited luck. Is there anything I should be doing to ensure better success?

I will be starting some strawberry NFT testing as soon as the last frost here in florida. Watch for picture postings soon. I have never tried it myself but I got an idea to use aluminum roofing panels.  

Date:
01 Jan 2000
Time:
17:44:27

Comments

Ron, I just built a gurgling garden and it works great! I have a drip ring instead of a straight hose. The only thing is that I think it works too good. I transplanted some young pepper plants from soil into my mix of 2 parts perlite, 1 part vermiculite. I had the bucket on all day the first day and it seems the plants are wilting badly. The medium is very wet and doesn't seem to dry out so fast. Are these plants being over watered? I live in the caribbean and it is usually sunny outside, about 80 degrees nowadays. I'm going to leave it unplugged until it appears they are coming back around - sound like a good idea?

Yes that is what's happening. They are drowning  The gurgle garden is for fast draining medium like grow rocks. Strait perlite would be better than adding it with vermiculite because vermiculite brakes down to fast and blocks oxygen. Especially with water running on it continuously. You could water every hour or so if you add a timer to you garden.   

Date:
02 Jan 2000
Time:
16:00:53

Comments

What can I do about yellowing leaves on plants. pH levels are fine.

Make sure you are not under feeding them or over feeding them with nutrient solution. Both will cause yellowing. Or your solution may be lacking something like iron.

Date:
02 Jan 2000
Time:
18:57:10

Comments

ron, all redi mix concrete companies have tons of calcium chloride

Date:
02 Jan 2000
Time:
23:54:52

Comments

hi i built my pop bottle hydro a year ago but just fired it up today hope it works i've always been a dirt man. well i see

Date:
03 Jan 2000
Time:
17:00:50

Comments

Hey I am new to the hydroponics scene and need to know what is necessary for a balanced hydropnic setup. Also I planted some lima beans and they bloated and are now some kind of smelly fungi, why? My grass seeds grew beautifully! Thanks -Debbie

Make sure your garden is on a level surface then maybe it will stay balanced. DON'T go near the bloated lima bean smelly fungi. It has been known to digest people.

Date:
03 Jan 2000
Time:
19:53:07

Comments

ph tester

Actually it's pH tester

Date:
04 Jan 2000
Time:
10:44:29

Comments

dear hydroron, I am doing a school science project on hydroponics and geoponics. the plants I am using is aztec grass. what are some good sites that I can look up for references. thank you for your time. John Prieto

Try aztecgrass.com

Date:
05 Jan 2000
Time:
00:51:26

Comments

like the color

Date:
05 Jan 2000
Time:
11:10:32

Comments

some of the leaves of my hydroponically grown carnatioms go white then die. why?

don't no

Date:
05 Jan 2000
Time:
14:15:14

Comments

hello ron, I really enjoy this site! was wondering what modifications would need to be made to your 11 plant system if one wished to have 9-11 plants in 3 LITER BOTTLES? what pvc pipe size would you recommend, would a larger overflow valve or anything else be necessary? thanks again

You will have to take a bottle cap with you to the plumbing store and check the sizes until you find one that fits without to much modification. You can use two overflow pipes if one isn't enough or use a flow control valve to slow the flow if you pump is to big for your system.




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