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Newbie Building N.F.T system & growing watermelons! Need help!

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Old 07-24-2009, 09:38 AM
BlackRabbit BlackRabbit is offline
Junior Member
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Newcastle, NSW.
Posts: 2
Question Newbie Building N.F.T system & growing watermelons! Need help!

Hey everyone

First off, I am new to this site (obviously) and i am new to Hydroponics. I hope that i don't annoy you guys to much with my horrible questions .

I am trying to grow watermelons. So far i am just germinating the watermelon seeds. I am doing this by placing a seed in a grow cube, Not sure if that's the correct term but its like a hard sponge i think they call it Rock-wool. I have poured a shot glass of water over each one, and set it up on the window sill.
Should i water everyday? with 30mls?

I only started germination today, so that gives me about 10 days to get my Hydroponic setup up and running. So here is my plan; i am taking a 100mm x 1 metre pvc pipe and putting end caps on with pvc glue. Than on one of the caps, and on the bottom of the pipe at the other end, i am drilling a 15mm hole to screw my 15mm to 13mm plastic piece.

Obviously most of you don't even need me to tell you this, but i need some questions answered that i haven't been able to answer myself using the internet.

I will be using an aquarium water pump that pumps at 400Litres/Hour. It has a variable switch so i can restrict it to 2Litres per minute, which i am told is what you want for a NFT system.

I will be using clay pellets as the growing medium. Will it matter that my grow cube, surrounded by these pellets, doesn't touch the water? Will the roots make their way into the stream? Its a pretty big concern for me.

Another is nutrients, I plan to use Dutch Master nutrients and am opting to go with Dutch Master One. Only while i learn the basics of hydroponics.

A site told me to replace the nutrients every two weeks, but the Dutchmaster site confused me.

The calculater section on their site says 50mls per week. Does that mean they expect me to change the nutrient solution each week? It has confused me, especially because i plan on getting a ECC pen to use the calculator more efficiently. In one scenario, not related to me, it says 20ml in week one and 30 mls in week two.. It made me ponder if they wanted it to be replaced, or to add 30mls to the current nutrient solution. Seems so pretty expensive if your replacing it every week.

I am not bothering with lights at the moment, i am using the sun, as i pretty much don't have the spare cash right now.

Sorry guys, this is a pretty big first post.. This does seem a little rude to me, to come onto a site and ask so much.. But i am pretty concerned, and with the seedlings starting to sprout i want to sort out everything before they go in.

When i get it running i'll be sure to take progress shots of both my hydro setup being built, and the growing of the watermelons (sugar baby).

I thought i had more questions but i can't think of them right now (lucky yous ). Sorry once again guys, any help would be greatly appreciated.



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beginner, building, hydroponics, watermelons

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