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-   -   New Guy with Questions (http://www.hydroponicsonline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=3243)

rick_ca 02-18-2016 07:17 PM

New Guy with Questions
Hello All
This is my 1st post so be gentle LOL, anyway tried growing various peppers last year in a 6ft X 5ft grow room with a 400watt light/ballast the medium I used was soil and watered/feed when pots got light, needless to say the results were dismal so over the winter Iíve been researching Hydroponics and Iím leaning towards the ďDutch BucketĒ system. So here are a few questions I have
1 I can get access to food grade dark blue buckets but they are only 2 gallon are they big enough
2 Totally confused on what medium to use (internet overload) leaning toward perlite and Rockwool, can I use Rockwool cube surrounded by perlite or would the clay pebbles be better.
3 Iíve read watering/feeding 3 to 4 times a day but for what duration
Ok thatís a start I will be looking for your input and advice before I go any further.
Thanks in advance

rick_ca 02-21-2016 06:44 PM

Guess I'm on my own with this setup was hoping for a reply or two, back to google for answers I guess

GpsFrontier 03-01-2016 02:55 AM

Hello rick_ca, Sorry I missed your post.


1 I can get access to food grade dark blue buckets but they are only 2 gallon are they big enough
What plants are you going to try and grow using them?


2 Totally confused on what medium to use (internet overload) leaning toward perlite and Rockwool, can I use Rockwool cube surrounded by perlite or would the clay pebbles be better.
Personally I don't really like rockwool because among other things it gets waterlogged easily. But you can use just about any growing medium as long as you design the hydroponic system with the growing medium's characteristics in mind. As an example you wouldn't really want to use perlite as a growing media in a flood and drain system because it floats, and would pour out the top the first time you flood the system. That is unless you mixed it with something else like coco fiber and adjusted the water level so it didn't flood so high. And/or used something like rocks on top to weight it down. etc. etc..


3 Iíve read watering/feeding 3 to 4 times a day but for what duration
The cycle times depends largely on the type of system your growing in, how you designed it, type of growing media, temperature, humidity, etc. etc.. You only need it on long enough to get the roots wet, and you don't want it off so long that the roots dry out in-between cycles. You want the roots to stay consistently moist 24/7.

rick_ca 03-01-2016 06:12 PM

Hi thanks for replying thought I was going to have to go this alone LOL anyway hereís what Iíve come up with so far.
Found a 8 x 4 ft. drip pan on used equipment site
Went to a hydro shop and after some talking a demoís going with a drip system with 4in Rockwool stacked 2 high in 3gallon bucket with small stones for weight, so getting away from Dutch bucket system. As to what Iím growing its hot peppers under a 1000watt grow light.
Iím still looking for inputs on what Iím doing as this will be an ongoing learning experience.

GpsFrontier 03-01-2016 06:56 PM

Hello rick_ca,

1. Are they determinate (bush) or indeterminate pepper varieties?
2. How many plants are you going to be growing?

I prefer to use a drip system for growing large plants myself. But I'm not sure if your planing to buy a system, or build your own system. The guys at the hydro shop want to sell products, so their not really helpful if you want to build your own system. That is unless you build it from stuff they have for sale in their store, then they will be happy to sell it all to you.

Personally coco fiber/chips is a far better growing media, and much less expensive too.

rick_ca 03-01-2016 10:48 PM

Peppers I'm going to try grow are as follows
Ghost, chocolate scorpion, red habanero and Carolina reapers and now some different tomatoes (wife’s idea), drip system will be a self-built not complete store built. Parts I've been picking up locally and via amazon and will build and adapt to what works.
I Have already purchased Rockwool cubes so will go with them this grow, as for how many not sure yet I want to keep 1st hydro small and expand to bigger as I get used to it

GpsFrontier 03-01-2016 11:30 PM

Hello rick_ca,
I wasn't asking what flavor of peppers, I was asking if they were determinate or indeterminate. Determinate varieties have a pre-determined size, meaning they only get so big. These type are also often called bush varieties. Indeterminate varieties just keep growing, and can get 4-5 times bigger (or even more) than determinants ones. I was asking because the size of the plant will make a difference in designing a hydroponic system to grow them in.

I was under the impression you were looking for help designing a hydroponic system to grow your plants in. I know you changed your mind about the dutch buckets, and decided on building a drip system, but there a 100 ways to build a drip system. However it now sounds like you've already decided what you want to do, how you want to design it, and already started building it. So I'm not sure how I can help...

rick_ca 03-02-2016 07:01 AM

As I hadn't had a reply on here (see second post) I had to make a choice and started getting gear together from info I had gleened via internet, and advice is always welcome I will post a picture once I've put all together. Reason I posted types of peppers as I could have only quoted what I have read of the internet and don't know if they are bush/Indeterminate varieties I can tell you the failed ghost peppers I tried last year were squat bushy plant.

GpsFrontier 03-02-2016 10:14 AM

Hello rick_ca,
Yes I know nobody replied to your original post quickly. Hence the reason I said "Sorry I missed your post" in my first reply. In fact the only reason I saw your thread in the first place is because I was longed in and saw a new user was longed in as well. When I viewed their profile I could see they were looking at your thread. There were only two posts, both yours, and when I saw the dates I realized they were relatively new posts. So I made a point to reply.

I understand that when you didn't get a reply you still wanted to proceed, so you didn't wait around for a reply before you did. Not a problem, but that still doesn't help me understand anything about where you are now with what you want to accomplish, or what you plan to build. All I know about what you plan is that you want to grow peppers and tomato's (with no idea how big they will get, if they need a trellis, or even or how many plants), that you want to use rockwool growing media, you bought some type of tray, and you decided on building a drip system.

Well those clues just don't really tell me anything. So hence my statement "I'm not sure how I can help." I'm more than happy to try and help. But I don't have a clue what you want or need help with. There's no point of me asking questions at this point because I don't know what to ask (and don't want to write a book), simply because I don't know any details. Without any details, all I can do right now is just sit back and wait until you ask some questions or provide some details you want feedback about.

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