Aeroponic Gardening Ideas, Techniques, Setup
Let us discuss today aeroponic gardening ideas; advantages and disadvantages of aeroponic gardening. Aeroponics is a form of hydroponics which will involve the spraying of water and solution of nutrients on to the roots of plants. In order to achieve this, growers or gardeners can make a choice between different types of systems. To set up a successful aquaponics at home, you must have some aeroponic gardening ideas, techniques.,
There are mainly two types of aeroponic systems.
- High-pressure aeroponic system.
- Low-pressure aeroponic system.
The aeroponic system is a great choice to grow plants in fewer spaces mainly in the indoors. Aeroponics is very similar to hydroponics as none of these two methods uses soil as a medium for plant growth. The only difference is that in hydroponics, water is used as a growing medium whereas, in the aeroponic system, no form of growing medium is used. The roots of plants in the aeroponic system will be suspended in a dark chamber and they will be sprayed with solutions which are rich in nutrients on a periodic basis.
Aeroponic gardening is not that difficult to handle and there are a lot more benefits with it. You can grow any type of plants by making use of aeroponics, especially vegetables. The plants will grow quickly in aeroponics with a very good yield. The plants will also be very healthy than the ones which are grown in soil. Feeding for the aeroponic system is also an easy task as the plants which are grown using the aeroponic system will need very less water and nutrients. Irrespective of the systems which you are using indoors, aeroponics will need less space which makes this method of plant growth suitable to the urban growers. The plants which are grown by using the aeroponic system will be suspended over a reservoir with some kind of container which is sealed. Feeding for an aeroponic system is made by using sprinkler and pump system which will spray the nutrient-rich solution on periodic intervals onto the roots of the plants. The main disadvantage with the plant growth in aeroponics is that it needs to be kept perfectly clean as the moist environment in the aeroponic system will be very much prone to the growth of bacteria.
Aeroponic gardening benefits:
- In the aeroponic grow systems, plant growth will be very fast. This is the main feature of aeroponics. The growth of plants will be fast as the roots will have access of large amount on oxygen.
- The aeroponic system is easy to maintain. In aeroponics, you will have to just maintain the root chamber which will require disinfecting on a regular basis, periodic and irrigation channels on a periodic basis.
- You will require less water and nutrients as the rate of absorption of nutrients is higher and the plants will generally respond to aeroponics by encouraging more roots to grow.
- Plants along with their nurseries can be moved easily without any sort of effort.
- Aeroponics system will be needed little space. You will not need more amount of space to start an aeroponic garden. Based on the system, plants can be arranged on top of each other. Aeroponics is generally a modular system which is great for using limited space to the maximum.
Aeroponic gardening disadvantages:
- An aeroponic system will be made by using high-pressure pumps, timers, and sprinklers. If any of these will break down, the plants will be damaged easily.
- You will require some amount of competency to run an aeroponic system. You will also need to have good knowledge of nutrients which are needed for your plant as you do not have soil for the absorption of high amounts of nutrients which are supplied.
- Root chamber should be cleaned on a regular basis. Make sure that there is no contamination of the root chamber as there will be chances of diseases for roots. You need to apply disinfectants of root chamber on a regular basis. The mostly used disinfectant is hydrogen peroxide.
Tips to deal with problems in aeroponic gardening:
When the aeroponic system is combined with perfect nutrients, it will give a very good growth and yield than in a hydroponic system. This is because the toots will have very good access to oxygen, nutrients and moisture and everything which they will require to grow well.
But as all the systems of gardening, aeroponics also has its own challenges which are not that addressed but can affect your chances of creating a successful garden.
- Malfunctions of the pump: The equipment which functions well is very much important irrespective of the systems you use. The aeroponic system will deliver a fine amount of mist to the plants. The box in which the roots are placed will maintain a perfect rate of humidity. If you are facing any sort of malfunction which causes the pump to stop working, the rate of humidity in the box drops rapidly mainly cutting off all the supply of aeroponic nutrients to the plants. That’s the reason why you will need to invest in very good equipment for your aeroponic garden to maintain it on a regular basis.
- Nozzles which are not working: The nutrients in aeroponics will consist of many numbers of salts and another form of compounds. Gradually, these salts get built up in the nozzles and later clog them causing deprivation to the plants. As the nozzles have to be very small in the aeroponic systems, it will lead to a situation where there is no amount of moisture or nutrients provided to your plants. This is the reason why sanitation is required for all of your equipment which is used in the aeroponic garden. You can rub the nozzles of your aeroponic system with isopropyl to clear them so that a steady flow can be allowed.
- Growth of bacteria and fungi: Fungi and bacteria will survive in environments which are warm and damp. As the aeroponic system is the one which has to be warm and also extremely damp, it seems like this system of gardening is more prone to unwanted bacteria and infections which are caused by fungi. One of the best ways to solve this is by using hydrogen peroxide. A little amount of hydrogen peroxide will rapidly kill the bacteria and fungi which are harmful. Make sure that you are not using too much of this compound as this will harm your roots.
- Root box problems: The root box used for aeroponic should be maintained with roots which are kept in darkness and should not let any of the moisture or sunlight into the system. Roots of the plants growing in your aeroponic system will prefer growing in an environment which is dark. To ensure that it is closed and away from your grow lights.
Aeroponic systems can be recommended to the advanced gardeners as it involves the perfect mix of nutrients. You can set up a smaller version of aeroponics set-up in order to clone plants. Always ensure that you are making use of a chamber which is dark colored for the protection of roots from light. Here, we will explain to you how to build your own aeroponic system in your garden.
Following is the aeroponic kit needed:
- Air stones
- Air tubing
- ½ inch drill bit
- 2-inch drill bit.
- Water pump
- Reservoir cover
- Black vinyl tubing.
Steps for setting up an aeroponic garden/Aeroponic gardening ideas for setup:
You will need to drill hole of 2 inches on the top of the root chamber. These holes should be at a distance of 2 to 6 inches from each other. The number of holes can be determined as per the chamber size and the number of plants you want to grow.
- Now, you will need to drill another hole of a ½ inch on the corner of the root chambers top. This hole will be used for the tubing of a plug-in cord and air pump from the water pump.
- Make use of the PVC for making a square which is of grill shape or it can also be of rectangle configuration. Small holes should be drilled with about 1 to 2 inches space in between them along the top of the PVC for the insertion of sprayers.
- By making use of the PVV T-connected, connect the water pump to the PVC pipes. Ensure that the T-connector is set to the center so that it can m=be made use as a brace and can also hold up the configuration.
- The reservoir has to be filled for about half with nutrient solution. Ensure that the level of water is at least 2 inches below the sprayers.
- Now plug-in the water pump and air pump. Ensure that the air pump is creating water bubbles and also check if the water flow is steady in the spraying which will cause fine mist. So many people think that there is no necessity of an air pump in the aeroponic garden. Though air pump will not spray water directly to the roots, it is always suggested to use as a safety backup to maintain humidity in the chamber which will give you some time to think when the sprayers stop working anytime.
- Few people recommend the usage of the timer and set the time for sprayers for 1 minute or 30 seconds in order to spray the solution on to the roots. But it is always better to spray the water continuously rather than using a timer.
aeroponic gardening ideas for maintenance:
- The key point to make a homemade aeroponics system work will be the placement of sprayers. Always ensure that the sprayers are located very close to the roots so that they can spray the nutrient solution directly on to them.
- If the roots of the plants are small, then you will need to water the plants using the hand till the roots are grown enough.
- There are trails made by placing the sprayers directly beneath the plant. This will be great if you are using aeroponics to clone and the plants do not have roots or have less number of roots. If the plants are mature and they have a complete root system, this will be a bit problematic of the roots start growing on the sprayers and cover them.
- One more option will be to place the sprayers along the wall inside the reservoir.
- The best option is to organize the tubing along the reservoir top and hand the sprayers upside down next to every plant hole. This will generally work out when the roots are not growing over the sprayers and interrupting their way.
That’s all folks about “Aeroponic Gardening Ideas”.