Hydroponics gardening guide – growing mediums used in hydroponics – Soil less Mixtures and Coconut Fiber

Hydroponics gardening guide – growing mediums used in hydroponics – Soil less Mixtures and Coconut Fiber

Soil less Mixtures

There is a great amount of soil less mixtures available, which contain different ingredients. Sphagnum moss, perlite, and vermiculite are the most widely spread hydroponics components, used in such mixtures.

Being organic, soil less growing media are usually used for container gardening wick systems or on-recovery drip systems. It is also possible to use soil less mixtures in recovery systems, however, it is necessary to remember that because of very fine particles in such mixtures, they can clog tubes, pumps and drip emitters, when used without a good filtration system. By the way, according to the urban gardeners, one can use panty hose as a filter: just fit it to the return line and to the pump inlet, and all the tiny particles will be filtered out.

Most soil less mixes form a good growing medium for multiple hydroponic and organic gardens, because they can hold water well, have great wicking action, and, at the same time, they provide a reasonable amount of air to the roots of growing plants.

 

Coconut Fiber

The popularity of coconut fiber as growing medium increases rapidly around the world. Being the first totally organic growing medium, providing highest performance for hydroponic systems, coconut fiber may soon become the most popular growing medium ever. It is interesting to note that coconut fiber is, actually, a waste product, which contains the powdered husks of coconuts.

In comparison to rockwool, coconut fiber is characterized with higher oxygen capacity and water retaining. These features are important advantages for hydroponic systems with intermittent watering cycles.

Coconut fiber also contains a lot of root stimulating hormones, thus offering some protection against fungus infestation and other root diseases. The mixture of 50% coconut fiber and 50% expanded clay pellets is considered to be the perfect growing medium.

However, it is necessary to underline one precaution when buying coconut fiber. Avoid purchasing a low grade coconut fiber, which is very fine grained and contains a high level of sea-salts. Such coconut fiber will have negative and disappointing effect on hydroponic system.

My name is guy. I am the founder and owner of the urbangardenershop.com.au . I fell in love with hydroponics gardening. As time went by I gathered a vast knowledge base and 2 years ago I decided to find a way to make hydroponics gardening a hobby that anyone can peruse. I added a hydroponic gardening information center to our hydroponic supplies site that offers a large range of hydroponics articles. Thank you for your interest and feel free to ask questions on hydroponics gardening in our site

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Organic gardening in hydroponics – Organic nutrients and growing mediums

Organic gardening in hydroponics – Organic nutrients and growing mediums

The use of organic plant nutrients instead of the man-made chemicals in the hydroponic garden eases the work of a gardener. The matter is that the absence of synthetic chemicals eliminates the problem of ppm amount and pH balance of the water. If there is no need to calibrate nutrients, to check pH level of the water, and calculate fertilizer’s amount, a beginner of the hydroponic gardening will definitely make no mistakes, which means many problems may never occur.

A dual root growing system is made by special composition of the medium in the container: the upper part of the medium is soil or soil substitute, and organic nutrients can be supplied directly to this upper part; the lower half of the medium is some porous material, which retains water, but to which no nutrients are supplied. 

Creating an organic hydroponics system, a gardener may use a standard hydroponic grow container, though a coir fiber container will suit too. The preferred material to put at the bottom of the box is lava rock, which perfectly keeps water. Lava rock is then covered with a thin layer of loose rockwool or coir fiber to divide both medium layers and prevent them from mixing together. The upper half of the container should be filled with a mixture of 1/3 potting soil, 1/3 coarse grade horticulture perlite, and 1/3 large-sized horticulture vermiculite. Such arrangement ensures the upper capillary action of water and protects the bottom of the grow bed from the occasional mixing with any organic particles. 

Using a standard plastic hydroponic grow container one should place a plastic screen lining inside the grow bed, fitting it well at the bottom and on the walls of the container up to their top, also with the aim to protect the water from the small particles in the medium mixture. It is also possible to use a hydroponic container with tiny holes.

One more good choice for the use of organic gardening methods in hydroponics system is coir fiber containers. The filling is the same as described above with the thin layer of loose or strand coir fiber between the two types of medium. 

Such box is then set in the grow bed. Note that the level of the pumped water should be a bit lower than the soil mixture. The secondary root system will be submerged into the water along with lava rock and promote the capillary water flow up into the soil. The lower half of the medium may be watered on a regular hydroponic basis, while the upper one can be moistened just once a day. 

This system allows a gardener to supply nutrients right to the upper part of the medium, where they are vitally important. At the same time, the whole medium structure will be perfectly moistened by the pumped water and the plants will also have constant supply of oxygen and CO2, drawn into their root systems. Finally, proper amount of CO2 will improve the absorption of nutrients by the upper parts of the roots. 

My name is guy. I am the founder and owner of the urbangardenershop.com.au . I fell in love with hydroponics gardening. As time went by I gathered a vast knowledge base and 2 years ago I decided to find a way to make hydroponics gardening a hobby that anyone can peruse. I added a hydroponic gardening information center to our hydroponic supplies site that offers a large range of hydroponics articles. Thank you for your interest and feel free to ask questions on hydroponics gardening in our site

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