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can imagine the water running back through the pump
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Question and Answer Page 40

Subjects

problems with leaks gallon jug caps in the 1 1/5 inch t's? why adjust the pH every other day
3/4 pipe instead of 1 inch rockwool in a flood/drain system? entire TIME from seed to fruit
2 liter units is made with 1/2" pipe check the maximum pump height The best way to deliver CO2
can plants get to much water with 11- system Does bud room have to be pitch black greenhouse swamp cooler
EC level going up as days pass ? Sorry I'm more engineer than chemist lots of fluorescent light doing nothing
Date:
19 May 2000
Time:
14:01:49

Comments

FYI CoCo Bricks
For the article, go to http://www.hydroponics.net/
Upper left hand corner, click on : "General Hydroponics"
On the next page, in the left hand column, click on: Growing Media, click on "CoCo Peat"
On the next page, click under Description, click on: CoCo Peat (Case of 24). The article is here.
Sorry, but you must go through all these pages to get it.
More information is at http://www.groworganic.com
Haven't been signing my posts, but I'm Tailwheel

Date:
19 May 2000
Time:
14:10:28

Comments

Here's a page with info on potting mixes you can compound for seed planting.
http://www.attra.org/attra-pub/potmix.html
Tailwheel

 

Date:
21 May 2000
Time:
11:35:43

Comments

I have problems with leaks where the two liter bottles screw in. I have tried using all kinds of glues. Any suggestions?

You must have rubber washers in your bottle caps to seal the leaks when you screw the bottles tight. When I drill a hole in the caps I make sure I save the blue washer already in the cap.  

Date:
21 May 2000
Time:
20:35:19

Comments

Hi Ron, I have started to build your 11 plant 2-liter system but had problems finding 1 inch piping instead I found everything in 3/4 inch will the 2-liter cap fit this and if so will it leak
Thanks
Pingman

You can use 3/4 inch if you don't use the bottle caps and heat up the tee to make it pliable and cram the bottle into it.
Or grind a little off the threads and then glue them in. 

Date:
21 May 2000
Time:
22:06:53

Comments

Hey, Ron! I was wonderin' if you could suggest any ideas to modify my little ebb/flow system? Its small-1'X3' with a 160 gph pump. I was wondering if I could, say, raise the 5 1/4" pots up off the bottom of the tray so many inches and then keep the nutrients just a flowin'-kinda like nft? Drip irrigation seems like a fussy form of hydro to me. I'm just getting started in hydro, and even though I've done some homework on it, I STILL CAVEMAN!!! Thanks pal!

Thinking

Date:
21 May 2000
Time:
22:07:53

Comments

I had some leak problems with my second unit. Try aquarium silicon sealer. Make sure you let it cure for at least a day. I heard someone used hot glue. You might try that.
CM

Date:
21 May 2000
Time:
22:11:28

Comments

Pingman, One of my 2 liter units is made with 1/2" pipe. I just got fittings that necked up to 1" for the bottles. If you go with 3/4" pipe you can forget about using the screw cap. You may have to file down the bottle threads as well. You'll have to use a bunch of sealer to get it leak proof. Hot glue might work.
CM

I used 3/4 inch pipe when I built my first 32 plant garden 10 years ago and that same year I built a 2500 indoor garden for a client using the same 3/4 size. First by grinding some off the bottle, then by heating the tee and cramming the bottle on. Both ways took a lot of silicone to stop the leaks. 
But when I built my own commercial garden I change to 1/2 inch to save money.
Then a couple of years ago a fellow member brought to my attention that a bottle cap would fit into a 1 inch tee if you use a schedule 26 PVC piece of pipe. No more leaks. The extra cost of the larger size well out ways any savings you would get by using the smaller sizes.    
   

Date:
22 May 2000
Time:
00:58:10

Comments

Ok, I was recently looking at some advertisements in a mag and noticed two in particular. One of them was of Pyraponic Industries Phototron's and the other was of P.I.G.S. indoor growing systems. I am looking for a very small indoor growing system (lack of space). I need some advice concerning these products or anything else that might get the job done...thanks,

Date:
22 May 2000
Time:
20:54:16

Comments

Phototron is total garbage the pigs system i've seen on the net being used it seems to work it however is just a basic ebb/flow system with an hid and fancy stand Andrew

 
Date:
22 May 2000
Time:
04:16:50

Comments

Hey Ron, I am trying to grow plants in my second story APT The plants are approx 2 inc tall. the problem is light The sun rises in the east so at around 10:30am I am putting my plants towards the east and from about 12:00Pm to 3:00Pm I am using a Philips Earth light that boasts 1950 light output lumens and from 4:00pm to about 7:30 I go to the west end of my balcony will this work. Also The 11 bottle system is that a NFT System you said earlier that the pump can stay on all the time on a nft system can plants get to much water with your 11- system
Thanks
Pingman

The 11 bottle garden is an ebb and flow system. It is not designed to run all the time. An NFT system has fast flowing water that creates a lot of oxygen to prevent root rot. 

Date:
22 May 2000
Time:
08:33:24

Comments

hi ron

is it normal to experience EC level going up as days pass ? water level go down ...

isnt it while plant eats up the nutrient in water, the EC should go down ?

zingman

When you experience some evaporation of your nutrient solution then the PPM would rise some.

Date:
22 May 2000
Time:
23:05:36

Comments

Thanks for all the help, Your site is great. I was wondering if you could tell me how you put gallon jug caps in the 1 1/5 inch t's? Any help would be great, Thanks.

If you use those large safety gallon caps then they will fit in 2 1/2 inch tee with a 2 1/2 inch thin wall piece of pipe perfectly. But if you can't find thin wall PVC like most people then just forget everything I just said. 

Date:
23 May 2000
Time:
16:24:11

Comments

Hello Ron, I have completed the last stage of the 11- bottle system, I decided to sleeve from 3/4 to 1/2 so the bottles will fir over used plumbers goop which by the way works well The problem is when I turn the pump on the water rises only to the beginning third of the bottle the pump is new. the backflow pipe centers to the middle of each of the 11-bottles Also some of the bottles do not fill at all. pump specs are 145 sp What gives
pingman

What is 145 sp. Submersible pumps are rated GPH (gallon per hour) so if yours is 145 GPH that is plenty. 
The water should rise to what ever height you made the over flow pipe. Raise the pipe if you want the water to rise higher. Don't forget to drill a hole at the top of the over flow pipe or it will do strange things like not filling all of the cups up. 

Date:
24 May 2000
Time:
07:58:49

Comments

Hey Ron, can you use rockwool exclusively in a flood/drain system?

Yes My first garden 15 years ago was a flood/drain rockwool garden from Hydrofarm. 
I experienced root rot and I didn't like handling the stuff so I switch to grow-rocks and been with rocks ever since.
Grow-rocks hold so much oxygen it is hard to over water your plants and they are reusable.
 

Date:
24 May 2000
Time:
13:09:59

Comments

Ron,
Subject: Recap
For some strange reason the bottles would not fill. Then today at around 10:30am everything works fine. I guess you said it best strange things happen.
Pingman

The one great thing about sunlight is that it is FREE
Pingman

Date:
24 May 2000
Time:
18:46:43

Comments

Just a reminder. When looking for a pump make sure you check the maximum pump head (how high can it pump). Some pumps might not be able to fill your pots. I bought a small (120 gph or so) pump and it was pretty useless for the 11 plant system. It does work on another ebb and flow system I have (because of about a one foot difference in max height).
CM

It is always better to buy the biggest pump you can afford and use a flow control valve to adjust the GPH to your garden. Then if you enlarge your garden you just open up the valve or redirect some of the flow to add oxygen to your reservoir. 

Date:
24 May 2000
Time:
19:20:37

Comments

If my information is right - the blooming room should be lit for 12 hours and dark for 12 hrs. Does this room have to be pitch black - or just no direct light on the plants. In my greenhouse, there is light reflecting off the ceiling above my blooming area - no direct light getting to the plants - but it is not totally dark in the area either - what do you think ---- In The Dark?

You can get away with some light but not very much. About as much as a new moon reflects at night. If you can see your out stretched hand then I would say that's to much light. Some growers use black plastic on a pulley system to darken their greenhouse.  

Date:
25 May 2000
Time:
08:28:13

Comments

i need some help with a class project where i want to compare growing plants w/hydroponics to growing plants in soil, & vice versa.

Date:
25 May 2000
Time:
08:30:07

Comments

Does the ph of a nutrient solution stabilize with a high ppm? Also, is it supposed to be impossible to grow green beans in a soiless mix-peatmoss/perlite/vermiculite? I've had no luck.

Date:
25 May 2000
Time:
09:10:34

Comments

hi Ron!

I like the hydro web page, it truly kicks-ass. I know you've been asked this a thousand times, but I have more questions about pH. I have been growing tomatoes and alternative health herbs in FL for years and started hydro about 5 years ago now as an experiment that stuck! Anyway I had been using Rockwool one for years, but cost and supply issues made it suck for me too. I now use a sort of homemade nutrient salt powder formulation now with great results. But sometimes, for a small starter unit with 10 sprouts, a six gallon reservoir that's changed every two weeks and topped off every four days, and waters 4 times a day in rockwool baby cubes ---- I want to use up old Rockwool one drips and drops left over. My powder has a buffer to pH 5.8 and therefore never needs stabilized in the big units, and is for me ideal. I stopped using formula one because it was always pH 4.5-5.0 which caused problems and perpetually had to be adjusted to 6.0 (which works for me). I can't afford up and down bottles on a large scale, that's why I switched ferts in part. Phosphoric acid for ph downing is easy to find, but caco3 is hard to find for ph raising. baking soda works well pH wise, but I hear that the sodium competes with potassium for uptake in plant cells causing k deficiency. Is this true? Would baking soda cause a problem in such a small reservoir? What else is easily available to use to raise pH? Hydrate lime and potash for me dissolve poorly, work poorly, and cause water turbidity and line clogging. Any ideas?

I am one of those lucky ones that has well water that is always around 7.0 and only have to use very little pH down so I have always used the store bought stuff. 
While I get a lot of questions about fertilizer chemicals that is not my forte. My specialty is building garden systems well enough as to make it easy for the average grower. 

Date:
25 May 2000
Time:
15:30:36

Comments

Hi Ron, I have a Power-Gro drip system and an Aeroponic system that I built myself, both using gro-rocks. I use Rockwook Formula One A+B nutrient solution with a drop of SuperThrive per gallon. My problem is that after a week I have to adjust the pH of each system like every other day because it starts to become acidic, like around 5.0 or slightly lower. Is this normal? I have another system that uses the same nutrient solution, and the only difference is that I don't use gro-rocks. Aren't gro-rocks suppose to be inert as far as the pH is concerned? But it is the only difference, and I use rockwool and the roots dangle in solution aerated with a air stone. Will having to adjust the pH constantly affect the growth of my plants? Or is it ok as long as it doesn't drift too far acidic. Thanx for all your help, Mark.

Not adjusting your pH would have more of an effect on your plants growth than constantly raising the pH. I would keep it at 5.5 to 6.5 no matter how many times it took.

Date:
25 May 2000
Time:
23:49:47

Comment

lots being said about ph adjustment I must be lucky I never have to adjust I never change my water ever just add water & fert. when its almost empty & forget it the few times iv checked ph its right on 6 I use miracle grow & general hydro just the grow part never the bloom part works wonders for the killer tomatoes I also have air stones in the tank I think that keeps the water fresh

Date:
26 May 2000
Time:
04:15:07

Comments

Hey Ron,

What is the entire TIME span from the seed sprouting to when it bears it fruit or in this case BUDS

15 weeks. 1 week from seed sprouting to seedling, 6 weeks veg stage, 8 weeks flowering. 

Date:
26 May 2000
Time:
19:22:29
Remote User:
 

Comments

HI RON , WHEN ADDING CO2 HOWS THE BEST WAY TO DELIVER IN AIR, IN WATER. HOW MUCH, HOW LONG

You don't need any in the water. A CO2 injector and tank is the best way. It is hard to say just how much to add to a room without expensive meters to tell you how much is getting to the plants. Plants need about 1500 ppm in the room.
 I pump 1 CFH - Cubic feet per hour of CO2 gas for 15 minutes ever hour. It also depends on the size of your grow room.
Here is the formula for figuring out how much your room needs.

  1. Multiply: length x width x height of your room to calculate the volume in cubic feet.
  2. You want to raise the CO2 level in a room to the optimum level of 1500 ppm. Generally, the CO2 level in a room is 300 ppm so you need to raise your room level by 1200 ppm to reach the optimum.
  3. 1200 ppm = .0012 Note: Multiply your room volume (from step 1) x .0012 to figure out how much CO2 to add to your growing area.

Example: 
               10' long x 10' wide x 8' high = 800 cu.ft.
                      800 cu.ft. x .0012 = .96 cu.ft.
                   (You can round this off to 1 cu.ft.)
This is the amount of CO2 you need to add to a 10' x 10' x 8' room to raise the CO2 level to 1500 ppm.

Date:
27 May 2000
Time:
11:58:19

Comments

hey Ron, have a arched type greenhouse 12'wide 24'long 7'tall at center. would like to use it during the summer here in crescent city fl. for these dimensions how large would the pad need to be for a swamp cooler?

It's 4 ft. high so you need to go the full width. Maybe 10 ft. because of the curve. Put it on the north side and fans on the south. 

Date:
28 May 2000
Time:
12:58:09

Comments

Ron...I am growing one tomato plant in a MicroFarm inside. It's very happy right now, with bright green leaves and a ton of leaf growth happening on top. The problem is, I am using lots of fluorescent light and I keep reading here that that won't do it when the plant gets bigger. It's about a foot tall right now. At what point do you think I'll HAVE to shell out big bucks for better lighting? Thanks, Meredith

Any time now. For flowering it needs more lumens than a florescent can give it. You can't eat green, you want red.




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