This clever DIY build produces a steady crop of both sprouts and fully developed crops hydroponically.
Over the last year, we have been working diligently on advancing our hydroponic systems by watching and learning from videos on Youtube. Of course I have customized the system specifically for my family needs. This innovative home friendly grow system enables our people to realize quality growing methods all while being in the comfort of our home. Nothing beats freshly harvested food you grew all on your own. Despite changes in the economy, such as the virus outbreaks, being able to skip the store and harvest your own food is not only comforting but also safe since it’s directly out of your own kitchen.
Previous articles in my blog detail how we frame our planters. In those articles, I mentioned not having a yard for garden space limiting me to the raised planter beds on the deck and hydroponic systems in my home. Currently, I have more systems in my home than outside. Indoor systems help me reach my goal of having a year round system to produce microgreens, sprouts and leafy greens.
Hydroponic Reservoir and Grow Tray Setup
Below is a drawing of what a hydroponic system looks like. To build this we are going to take the stand we created in our previous post and then place the grow tray on top of it. The reservoir is a standard plastic storage container with a lid. Directly under it place your plastic tub, aka your water reservoir. Fill the reservoir with water and your nutrient solution. Place the pump in to the reservoir and funnel the hose from the bottom to the top grow tray. When the pump turns on it will fill the top, grow tray, with the nutrient water for the plants to absorb. To prevent overflow and the water rainy to high I have two draining tubs. Tip: Be sure to have your drain tub larger than your fill tube.
Next, we will go over how you get plants ready for a system like this?
Indoor hydroponics systems are a great way to grow food year-round, regardless of the climate outside. They are also a great way to save space, as they can be set up in a small area, such as a kitchen window or a closet.
There are many different types of indoor hydroponic systems available, so you can choose one that fits your needs and budget. Some of the most popular types of indoor hydroponic systems include:
- Drip systems: Drip systems are a simple and easy way to grow plants hydroponically. They work by dripping nutrient-rich water directly onto the roots of the plants.
- Ebb and flow systems: Ebb and flow systems are a more complex type of hydroponic system, but they are also very effective. They work by flooding the growing tray with nutrient-rich water and then draining it back out.
- Aeroponics systems: Aeroponics systems are the most complex type of hydroponic system, but they are also the most efficient. They work by suspending the roots of the plants in a mist of nutrient-rich water.
No matter what type of indoor hydroponic system you choose, it is important to follow the instructions carefully to ensure that your plants grow healthy and productive.
Here are some tips for growing plants hydroponically indoors:
- Choose the right plants: Not all plants are suited for hydroponics. Some of the best plants to grow hydroponically include leafy greens, herbs, and tomatoes.
- Use the right nutrients: Hydroponic plants need a different nutrient solution than plants grown in soil. You can buy pre-made nutrient solutions or make your own.
- Keep the water clean: The water in your hydroponic system needs to be clean and free of bacteria. You should change the water regularly.
- Monitor the pH: The pH of the water in your hydroponic system should be between 5.5 and 6.5. You can use a pH test kit to check the pH of the water.
- Provide adequate light: Hydroponic plants need a lot of light. You should place your hydroponic system in a bright spot, such as a south-facing window.
- Fertilize regularly: Hydroponic plants need to be fertilized regularly. You can use a liquid fertilizer or a slow-release fertilizer.
- Pest control: Hydroponic plants are susceptible to pests and diseases. You should inspect your plants regularly for pests and diseases and take steps to control them if they occur.
With a little care and attention, you can grow healthy and productive plants hydroponically indoors.
Vegetables Scraps You Can From Hydroponics
Using water with nutrient in your system can not only be a great money saver, but also a time and space saver. You can start this growth from scraps or from seed. To do this, suspend the veggie using toothpicks just slightly touching a shallow container of water. Once you get roots to establish, shortly thereafter, you should see the sprouts establish out of the top. Now it’s time to transplant that new growth into your hydroponic system or a grow bed.
Here are some of the common vegetables (and herbs) that can be grown in a aforementioned system:
- Potatoes / Sweet Potatoes
- Carrots, Turnips, Parsnips, Beets and Other Root Crops
- Lettuce, Bok Choi and Other Leafy Greens
- Basil, Mint, Cilantro & Other Herbs
Clean and Add The Plants
Although you can start from seed in a hydroponic setup I don’t recommend it. I have learned from experience, it’s far wiser to use a soil medium to begin. Start your seeds as you normally would for outdoor gardening, then once ready clean off the roots and transplant into your system.
I do this by starting seeds with my grow tray (dirt) or just getting some from Lowes or Walmart in spring. All you need to do is rince the dirt off the roots with a bucket of water.
Then place that plant into your hydroponic grow tray in rock core medium.by