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My first Hydro Garden Dutch Bucket / NFT


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  #1  
Old 09-11-2010, 10:56 PM
Freshwater Freshwater is offline
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Default My first Hydro Garden Dutch Bucket / NFT

Hi all,

Thought I would introduce myself, and show what I am up to in my small garden. I have been lurking and reading a bit, and think I might have some questions coming up.

Sooo...I'm Todd, I live in San Diego, California Zone 10 very near the ocean (1/4 mi. (<--- May come into play for my questions ;-)

I currently run 13 Bato Bucket/Dutch Pots with 26 plants.

drip system - return to res.

14 Heirloom Tomato plants
6-ish Zuc. and yellow squash
8 or so Peppers

NFT system

Three 10' PVC pipes -

30 some odd plants from Butterhead to Romaine, Bok Choy, Kale, Collards and a bunch more.


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So enough about that, here are is amateur video early on...


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  #2  
Old 09-11-2010, 11:08 PM
Freshwater Freshwater is offline
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...and later on in the season...

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I am learning a TON! This started out very small, and I got really into it.

Todd
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  #3  
Old 09-12-2010, 06:21 PM
NorEastFla NorEastFla is offline
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Absolutely Awesome, Freshwater!

I love your systems. Looks like some great salad fixins!

A long, long time ago, I used to get a motel room on the San Diego boardwalk for a month every summer while I was working in the mines in Nevada.

Now I live one mile from the beach in Florida.

Man, you're even closer than I am to the water!

Great looking plants man! Very, very good job!!!!
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Old 09-12-2010, 06:48 PM
HydroACR HydroACR is offline
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nice setup, thanks for posting the pics and details!
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  #5  
Old 09-16-2010, 07:02 AM
GpsFrontier GpsFrontier is offline
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Hello Freshwater,
Nice looking setups. What are the 2 small lines going into the end of the long tubes for? I assume they are water inlet lines, but I'm wondering why there are two of them, and/or what type of system it is (flood and drain, etc.). If they are lines for misters, doesn't that make maintenance difficult with the lines and misters inside the tube?

P.S. I used to pick up new cars (Audi and Volkswagen) from the port in National City, and deliver them to the dealerships in the 11 western states.
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  #6  
Old 09-17-2010, 10:44 AM
Freshwater Freshwater is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GpsFrontier View Post
Hello Freshwater,
Nice looking setups. What are the 2 small lines going into the end of the long tubes for? I assume they are water inlet lines, but I'm wondering why there are two of them, and/or what type of system it is (flood and drain, etc.). If they are lines for misters, doesn't that make maintenance difficult with the lines and misters inside the tube?
Thanks NorEast / Hydro!

Hey GPSFrontier,

The tubes are my NFT setup. 3 tubes, 3 inches in diameter, by 10 feet long, w/ 2 inch holes for net cups. The pipes, or channel drops 2 inches in ten feet allowing my flow.

I run dual pumps for the NFT system. If one pump where to go out, then the other one would (in theory) keep the root "wet", alive, and growing. Also helps if you get a line clog...which I have. Each pump runs one line for each tube.

This is actually my problematic system. I thought the drip system in the Bato Buckets was going to be the one that gave me more trouble. I recently switched nutrients for the NFT.

I started out using the "Super Natural Brand" "Gro Aqua" for everything. The drip system and the NFT system. Once my drip system plants vegged and began to flower, I switched the drip system over to "GH FloraMato" which I really like.

Just last month I cleared out the NFT, and did a full cleaning. I switched over to an organic nutrient for several reasons. Number one is that my hydro shop and I are of the thinking that the "Gro Aqua" might be a bit too chemically hot for light root feeders like lettuce. I also did have a couple instances with clogged emitters, and i wanted to try something that was not salt based. Don't get me wrong, I had good results... not great.

I am now using "Botanicare" "Pure Blend" Organic Compost Solution (1.0-0.5-1.0) and back that up with a bit of liquid seaweed. I started out at 1/3 ratio of recommended nutrient mix. Now I am up to 2/3 strength mix, and next week I will most likely go full strength.

Both my systems reservoirs run on R.O. water, at a P.H. of approx. 6.0. I do a straight P.H. balanced R.O. water flush once every week or two on the drip system and once a month on the NFT. This is to keep emitters clear, and to help prevent nutrient lockout.

The only other thing on my list for the NFT, as of right now...I want to swap out the PVC pipe for real NFT channel. I was looking at the "SureGro" NFT channel that Crop King carries, but they can't ship 10 foot section cheaply. (something like 400 bucks shipping!) I might end up going with 8 footers and splicing in 2 extra feet on the end, but don't want to if I can help it.

Anyone know of a good commercial NFT channel they might recommend?

Oh, and the port in National City is just 12 min. south of me towards the boarder. I live right next to Sea World in Ocean Beach. Small world!

Todd

Last edited by Freshwater; 09-17-2010 at 10:45 AM. Reason: Gotta give thanks!
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  #7  
Old 05-21-2011, 06:06 PM
T'Mater T'Mater is offline
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Awesome set up, only thing bad about living in Missouri, i can't grow year round outside. Part of my problem in my other discussion. Def. wish i would have found this forum before i got started would have probably saved me a ton of work.
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Old 05-22-2011, 10:48 AM
T'Mater T'Mater is offline
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Hey Freshwater, wife wanted me to ask you about how many pounds worth of tomatoes from you big mater's do you get from the time they start producing till the time you destroy them? Just a rough estimate.
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Old 05-24-2011, 01:38 PM
cable24601 cable24601 is offline
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This is fantastic! do you cover the plants in the rain? I have wanted to start an outdoor grow this year but I am worried about the rain filling my pots and then flooding my reservoir. Have you had this problem?
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  #10  
Old 05-24-2011, 02:16 PM
Freshwater Freshwater is offline
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Hey guys,

No idea on poundage of fruit collected...it's a bunch...

I've not needed to cover the plants yet...we don't really get that heavy of rain here is Sunny San Diego ;-) but, this year I did set up the frame to do so if i need.

As for rain and the bucket, hell...it's free water. I don't mind at all, takes me a good amount of time to fill R.O. water. Here again I don't get rain like some of you get.

Todd

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