In today’s world, you can grow flowers, get crops of lettuce, vegetables and other crops not only in the garden or greenhouse, but also in an ordinary city apartment. To grow plants at home, it is necessary to create artificial climate conditions for them. One of the most effective methods of growing is hydroponics.
Hydroponics is a technology of soilless cultivation of plants, which has a number of advantages over the traditional way of growing in soil, namely:
no need to loosen the soil, no need to fight weeds, no need to regularly water the plantings;
full control of plant nutrition;
in hydroponics plants easily get all the nutrients and do not waste energy on the development of the root system.
Creating a hydroponic installation by yourself
You do not need to be a highly qualified engineer to assemble a hydroponic system with your own hands. The simplest model will consist only of a tank, a compressor with a sprayer, planting places and inert substrate. Some of the more complex systems may have additional elements, but they are mostly incidental.
In this article, we will look at several types of different hydroponic systems, but first we will talk about the general rules to follow when purchasing components.
The tank intended for the nutrient solution must be made of a neutral material that is resistant to fertilizer and does not let in light.
The volume of the container must be adapted to the number of plants and their “appetite”. Otherwise the container will have to be refilled too often.
Of inert substrates you can choose mineral wool, expanded clay, coconut fiber, perlite, vermiculite or their complexes.
These instructions will help you create a budget system from improvised materials.
You will need:
- 2 plastic containers + 1 lid;
- Disposable plastic cups;
- 1 plastic and 1 rubber tube (the plastic outlet should have a larger diameter);
- pump capacity of 380 l / h (we recommend considering the model SP-650 from the brand Resun);
- knife or drill to make the holes;
- Azud seals and hot melt glue;
- 2 L-fittings. You can take connecting elements of high-strength plastic and save money without losing quality. Such are available from the brand Azud.
To assemble such a system is very simple. To do this, follow the instructions:
- In the lid of the container you need to make holes for the seats.
- In the bottom of the glasses, cut holes for the roots.
- Place the top box on top of the bottom box, then one end of the rubber hose should be removed through the cut out hole.
- In order to feed the nutrient solution from the lower tank to the upper you need to buy a pump and attach a 10-15 cm long hose to it. The pump should be placed in the lower tank with the nutrient solution.
- The end of the plastic hose should be cut at an angle of 45 degrees and install it with the cut side down. It is necessary to use special gaskets or thermal glue to seal the holes.
- In the upper container on opposite sides diagonally should be two holes for water supply and drainage. After it remains to pour the nutrient solution into the bottom tank, turn on the pump and check if there is a fountain from the tube (to test the drain for leaks).
- Place the cups in their places. The hydroponic system is ready!
DWC is a deep-water culture method. In this method of cultivation, the root system of the plant is completely immersed in a nutrient solution, which is constantly aerated. An example of such a system is the ready-made AquaPot. It is perfect for growing annual crops of large size. Thanks to its compact size, it fits easily even on a windowsill. All you need to make a good yield is to change the solution every 7-10 days, control the pH and EC. If you want, you can assemble a similar installation yourself.
For this we will need:
- A container of at least 20 liters with a lid;
- A mesh pot with diameter of 16 cm, made of non-toxic, high strength plastic;
- ASC-02 atomizer;
- single-channel compressor.
In the lid of the tank must be made a hole for the diameter of the pot. Directly under the lid you should make another hole for the wire compressor, connected to the aerator. The joints should be sealed.
The germinated seed in the mineral wool plug should be placed in an inert substrate such as expanded clay drainage or mineral wool. The substrate with the seedling, respectively, be placed in the planting place. In the tank is poured 12-15 liters of nutrient solution. The compressor in such a system should work 24 hours a day. The nutrient solution should be changed once every 7-10 days. Remember that with hydroponics it is important to control the pH and EC of the solution.
Drip irrigation system
It should be considered as a temporary help to the plants, especially when you are not at home. When properly assembled, this system can irrigate your plants without your presence. Growers often use drip irrigation to water their pets grown on coconut or any other inert substrate.
Here’s what you’ll need to create a drip irrigation system:
- A tank for the nutrient solution (depending on the number of plants);
- two 16 mm line pipes made of sturdy plastic;
How to assemble drip irrigation:
- Make a hole in the tank for the main line pipe (seal with a sealant);
- Arrange the mains from a 16 mm pipe;
- Using a puncher, make a hole for a microtube
- Then the microtube is connected to the main pipe with a microfitting;
- Drip tubes are installed;
- A pump should be placed in the tank;
- At the end of the main pipe we install a tap for drainage.
You can assemble a drip irrigation system yourself. Search for components does not have to be long. Everything you need for assembly is available in our store.
Aeroponics with their own hands
The term aeroponics should be understood as growing plants in a soilless environment. Only unlike hydroponics, their roots are in the air and irrigated with a nutrient solution supplied from nozzles.
- a large container for 70-100 liters;
- PVC sheet;
- mesh pots.
- water pump with a capacity of 3000 l/h;
- piece of metal-plastic 50 cm;
- 2 adapters for metal-plastic;
- One end of the adapter must be screwed into the pump, and the second end must be connected to the spigot through the barrel;
- Position the construction at the bottom of the pot;
- Cut out the lid from plastic to the diameter of the top of the pot;
- Make holes in the lid for planting seats;
- Perforate the pots with a soldering iron;
- Cover the center hole with a stopper;
- It remains to add substrate to the pots, place the plants, fill the container with a nutrient solution with an adjusted pH (5.8-6.2) and turn on the pump.
- Pour no more than 50 liters of solution;
- choose a watering regime of 15 minutes with intervals of 30 minutes;
- Use coarse expanded clay as substrate.