Pioneering Hydroponics

Since 1976

Articles

Why you need good air movement in your grow room

 

First things first, who wants to be stuck in a stuffy, hot, humid room? Nobody! Well that’s how your plants feel too. Like you, they want a temperature-controlled space that has plenty of lovely fresh air. 



   

What Does Iron Do for Plants?

 

Plants need a wide variety of nutrients such as nitrogen to function properly. Iron is another essential nutrient for plants, allowing them to grow strong and healthy. This nutrient is very important for photosynthesis. Even though it’s classified as a micronutrient, iron is extremely vital.



   

 

 

4 Common Mistakes with Hydroponic Nutrients

 

When starting hydroponics, it’s easy to make mistakes. Hydroponic nutrients need to be mixed in correctly to make sure your crops grow healthy and strong, however, there are a few common mistakes made when it comes to the grow room.


 
   

 

 

What Type of Media Should I Use for My Grow?

 

When we refer to media we’re talking about what you put into your pots for your plants to grow in. Media comes in different forms and supports plants in different ways, which is why there are many types.


 
   

Hydroponic Growing Media: Coco Coir

 

Coco coir is an organic fibre that derives from the coconut tree, sourced from the dense and tough husks you find inside coconuts. Being incredibly strong, coco coir is a great growing media solution. It’s also resistant to fungi and rot, making it ideal for wet environments.


 
   

 

What Size Fan, Filter and Lighting Set-Up Do I Need In My Grow Room?

 

Maybe this is the first time you've setup a grow room. Or possibly you're increasing the scale of your grow. Either way, sometimes it can be a little confusing when it comes to choosing how many plants you'll get in a certain space and how you'll provide them with enough light and ventilation. This is a basic illustrated guide on how to choose the right equipment to get the most from your crop in a given space.

 

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What Does Nitrogen Do for Plants?

 

Nitrogen can be absorbed by plants in either ammonium or nitrate form, or even through small organic molecules. The environment surrounding the roots, the rhizosphere, needs to maintain a balanced pH. If it’s too high, it can influence both the storage life and the taste of the plants. Hydroponic nutrients need to be perfectly balanced for healthy crops.

 

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What You Need to Know About Beneficial Microbes in Hydroponics

 

Give your hydroponic plants the push they need by providing them with beneficial microbes. They help to protect your plants from harmful microorganisms and to more efficiently use the nutrient solution.

 

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How to Deal with Aphids in Hydroponics

 

Sealed grow rooms are less susceptible to aphids, however, they can be very dangerous due to reproducing asexually. Just one aphid can cause a serious population boom and infect your plants very quickly. These soft-bodied insects feed with a straw-like mouth, which pierces into the plants and sucks the sap.


 
   

 

 

Top Tips for Using AutoPot Grow Systems

 
Completely expandable according to growing needs, AutoPot systems are simple to use. As automatic watering systems, they can be left unattended for several weeks. The AQUAvalve has a great capability and a large reservoir can cultivate between one to 100 plants.
 
 
 
 
   

 

How to Kill Spider Mites


Spider mites are common sap-feeding mites that affect plants and cause early leaf loss and mottled leaves. If you’re wondering how the pest got to your plants and how to kill spider mites, they are usually very difficult to spot. They measure around 1mm and usually difficult to see without a magnifying glass. They can be red, light brown, or green and you can find them on the underside of leaves.


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Hydroponic Growing Media: Clay Pebbles

 

Clay pebbles have the perfect shape and surface to allow your plants’ roots to adhere to them and for beneficial bacteria to colonise. Additionally, clay pebbles have a porous structure with a high-water capacity, which releases both water and nutrients as plants require them.


 
   

 

How to Choose Hydroponic Nutrients

 

Knowing what hydroponic nutrients to utilise when growing plants in hydroponics is essential for strong and healthy plants. From choosing the right growing medium, to using bloom booster, and other vital nutrients, here is a guide on how to choose hydroponic nutrients.

 

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Product Spotlight: Wilma System


As a joint collaboration between Atami and Nutriculture, the Wilma system has been designed to provide a simple solution. As easy to use as a pot, Wilma doesn’t require as much maintenance due to the automatic feeding timer. These systems have several benefits.


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Hydroponic Grow Systems: Nutrient Film Technique


NFT, or Nutrient Film Technique, consisting of a very shallow film of dissolved nutrients in water. This stream is continuously pumped past plants’ bare roots, which provides a permanent exposure of the roots to a water supply perfectly balanced with essential nutrients and oxygen.

Other systems have a conflict between plants’ essential requirements, often resulting in an imbalance of one or two requirements to achieve an optimum amount of one requirement. We took many years to perfect our NFT systems and, unsurprisingly, they’re Europe’s best sellers.


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Grodan Rockwool Cubes 101: The Do’s and Don’ts


Rockwool cubes have become an extremely popular choice as a growing medium. Also referred to as stonewool, rockwool is made from basalt. This growing medium has been used for over 40 years due to its capacity of water-holding, being sterile, and due to its inert capacity.

To ensure the best possible result from propagation cubesdelta cubesgrow cubes, or  rockwool slabs, there are a few do’s and don’ts to follow.

 

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Hydroponic Grow Systems: Aeroponics


These soilless hydroponic grow systems consist of growing plants in air and the roots receiving a nutrient solution in mist form. Intermediate to advanced growers may find it easier to keep the pH level at the accurate level needed but this system is ideal for for anyone who is experienced and wants to improve their growing results.

 

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Top Benefits of a Heated Propagator


heated propagator helps seeds to germinate quickly with a constant temperature when indoors. Virtually the same as an unheated propagator, the built-in heat mat in heated propagators help to overcome plant growing limits due to cold weather.

Make sure to increase your plants’ success rates through using a high-quality propagator such as the X-Stream propagator.


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3 Factors Affecting Your Grow Room Environment


When establishing a grow room, there are several factors affecting the environment for hydroponic growing in addition to ensuring the pH levelsare stable. The quality and the quantity of crops improve according to the accurate control of the environment. Both the yield and the growth of plants can be affected by the slightest change, which makes it even more vital for growers to keep the following factors in mind.


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Hydroponic Grow Systems: Drip Irrigation Systems

 

Drip irrigation systems are utilised in hydroponic grow rooms to regularly provide water and nutrients to plants. Through small perforations in tubes or hoses, these low-pressure grow systems typically deliver water to all roots evenly with a pressure of between 5 to 15 pounds per square inch.


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Top 4 Grow Room Essentials You Need

 

 Hydroponic grow rooms have a few main essentials needed in addition to grow systems and a nutrient solution. Ensuring that every detail is controlled and accurate will provide you with the results you want - healthy plants and a big yield.


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A Guide to Hydroponic Lighting


Hydroponic lighting is a vital component for hydroponic growth, making sure that plants receive the lighting they needed efficiently. Depending on the types of plants you’re growing, you will require a lighting timer so you can easily provide your plants with their individual lighting needs.

 

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Hydroponic Grow Systems: Ebb and Flood

 

Did you know that Nutriculture holds the record for the world’s tallest tomato plant? It was grown in an Ebb and Flood system, reaching 19.8 metres, or 65 feet.

This hydroponics grow system is reliable, simple, and cost effective. Ebb and Flood systems consist of trays or pots that are filled with grow media such as clay pebbles. Unlike soil, the clay pebbles don’t add nutrition to plants - they serve to anchor plant roots and to be a temporary water and nutrient reserve.

 

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Hydroponic Growing Systems: Deep Water Culture

Deep Water Culture growing systems, or DWC, involve suspending plants’ roots in solutions composed of water and nutrients. These well-oxygenated growing systems differ from other others through the 24/7 immersion of the roots in water. Aeroponics or Ebb and Flood, for example, consist of watering plants on a constant basis.

In traditional DWC systems, smaller setups may experience wild fluctuations of water levels, pH, and nutrients, which can also translate to difficulty in maintaining a stable and consistent water temperature.


 
   

 


How Water Quality Affects Plant Growth in Hydroponics

Although not the only used medium in hydroponics, water is an essential component for the nutrient solution. Too much water in the soil can cause roots to rot, which subsequently means that plants need to receive the amount of oxygen they need. Plants need water so they can transport nutrients such as sugar throughout their structures.

Water helps to keep plants nourished to help them grow strong, and to maintain its proper temperature. pH levels, electrical conductivity, hard or soft water, and temperature are vital components to keep balanced.


   

 


Air pressure and fan control

Adequate ventilation in your grow room is vital. If you don’t provide ventilation to keep air moving in and out of your grow room you can find that temperature, humidity and C0levels are too high. HID lights produce a lot of heat, so if you are using these it is crucial that you have sufficient ventilation to reduce the grow room temperature.

Signs you do not have enough air movement in your grow room can include mould, mildew and high humidity; all indicate the need to take action. Read on to find out more about how to maintain the perfect grow room environment.

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Why we’re Coco about 60/40

There’s no doubt about it, we are a nation of coco lovers. But what if we are missing a trick? What if we could have all the benefits of coco… And more!

Gold Label 60/40 is a perfect mix of 40% premium RHP certified Coco and 60% mixed shape clay pebbles. This careful balance protects against drying out, oxygen starvation, clumping and compacting. Providing a top-quality rooting environment.

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Maintaining the perfect pH level

The perfect pH level changes depending on what you are growing in and of course what you are growing. We recommend a pH level between 5.8 and 6.5.

Check pH levels of your nutrient solution in your tank weekly. You can use an approved test kit e.g, Nutriculture liquid pH test kit or an easier and more precise result can be achieved by choosing a digital pH meter like the HM Digital PH-200 and PH-80

If the pH of the solution is in the correct range 5.8 – 6.5 you needn’t do a thing.

If the pH of the solution is above the correct range add phosphoric acid (pH Down).

If the pH is below the correct range add potassium hydroxide (pH Up).

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Indoor Gardening - A beginners Guide

Environment

Growing environment is so important to successful growing. The five main factors to maintain are:

  1. Temperature – The ideal grow room temperature is between 26-28 degrees. You must remember that fluctuations in temperature will affect your humidity levels
  2. Humidity – Most plants with thrive with humidity between 40-60%. Some do like higher humidity but you must be aware that high humidity increases the risk of disease and fungus.
  3. CO2 level – Plants need CO2 in order to grow. CO2 will naturally be around 300-400 PPM, you can however supplement CO2.
  
     

Light spectrum and measurement explained

Spectrum

Natural sunlight consists of a wide spectrum of colours, although it may look orange/yellow/red to the human eye, the sun actually produces a much larger spectrum of light, including blue, green and purple. These become visible when a rainbow is present. Plants make use of a range of colours present in the spectrum. This broad spectrum of colour can also be separated by wavelength, which is measured in nanometers.

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   Light Spectrum
     

Why choose Rhino carbon filters?

Pelletized carbon is created by burning coal and processing it into rods which are broken up and distributed throughout the filter. The problem with palletized carbon is that is has very small pores due to the bonding agents used in the manufacturing process which cause pore structure to collapse. This makes pelletized carbon filters less effective at absorbing odour, and so will not rid grow rooms of odour.

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WINNERS!! Garden Culture Great UK Hydro Store Survey

Now we’re not known to brag but…. Look at these brands of ours voted top of the crop!! Crack open the bubbly!

Garden Culture magazine conducted a survey, putting you the retailer in the driving seat. They wanted to know the favourite UK Hydro brands and they wanted it to come from the horse’s mouth.

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Plants need oxygen too!

A lot of people forget that Oxygen is one of the most vital nutrients a plant requires - plant roots need oxygen for aerobic respiration, this is a necessary process that aids roots in taking up nutrients.

One of the first signs of low oxygen levels in a plant is wilting under warm or bright conditions. Insufficient oxygen availability for plants will reduce their ability to absorb nutrients and water. 

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