I’m so into gardening. And growing food – that’s right, no ornamental shit in this house! But unfortunately, I think I’m not particularly good at gardening. Or I get the timing wrong. You see, I spent a few dollars buying some seeds and planting them, and most sprout and grow into a cutie seedling AND THEN NOTHING. If it’s a cucurbit then they will rot away like jerks, but the solana type plants will stay the same height and just live for months with no growth. I think I have narrowed it down to shitty soil and just the luck of being poor but also needing to pay more for better quality soil. As you would likely know, my rental property doesn’t allow for any planting in the yard, and therefore I am limited to pots. Or stolen styrofoam containers.
Or hydro setups!
And luckily, hydros work so wonderfully well. I have had a lot of success with Winter hydros, and the kales, spinach and chards that explode from those pipes on the annum make me a happy girl. But in Summer the roots cannot handle it. So for a while I’ve had to deal with a lack of Summer foods growing. I also love the actual process of gardening, which feels so natural and comforting, while hydro growing can be very clinical and involved. However, it gets the bloody job done, and this method looks and feels like the healthiest soil.
The best plants to grow with this technique is anything tomato – they really thrive! My plants in the dirt grow nowhere near as well and as fast as in this medium. I will update soon, because the tomatoes have exploded in size since this pic was taken two weeks ago…
If you have a look in the pic below, you can see the medium the plants live in. It’s about 80% coconut coir and 20% perlite. Coir is just a block of coconut husk (a waste product) that expands and holds a lot of water. The texture, when wet, is similar to healthy soil. Perlite, is the part that allows water and air to flow freely and therefore keeps the roots healthy. Perlite comes in bags, and I normally buy 20 litres of it for $20 (this bag would weigh about 500g it is very light, and will last you ages). The coconut coir comes in tightly packed blocks, and 9 litres of expanded coir will cost about $2. To make the set up above, I used about 6 blocks of coir at a cost of less than $15. The pots are deep enough to accommodate adult plants, whose root systems don’t need to be as big when the food is readily available.
You will notice that I use regular pots, with holes at the bottom. I then sit the pots on a plate so they can drink up any excess. Give the plants a good soak to drain off any food they haven’t eaten. If you’re looking for help on creating your own or you’re having issues, this technique is known as RUN TO WASTE.
Update – six weeks later –
Below, it is early February’s hydros! However. During this month, we had unprecedented rains, and basically all of the plants were infected with particular diseases, including a tomato specific bug which took out much of the state’s tomatoes! See here.
The easy part is, beside the watering (which I do whenever the topsoil starts to look ratty and dry, I have only been feeding them a teaspoon of feed, per pot, every 3-4 days. I will up the ante once the fruit is blooming. I think with marijuana plants, the plants are fed daily or every second day. But I don’t mind the slow grind, as it saves me money on food.
Don’t be weirded out by this link, but the marijuana growers having been using this technique for a while, so you may as well learn what they know.
So, to learn how to maintain, or for any issues you have the need to troubleshoot, try this site out – growweedeasy.com