Thursday, September 17, 2009

Here is a VERY CREATIVE hydroponics setup using a WICHITA RAIN BARREL

Below is a great hydroponics set up that a client of Wichita Rain BArrels has done. He has had great success with it. Here is a bit of info he sent me.

 These pics are a few of my proto-type gardens I built myself.  Not prettiest things in the world but they save on maintanence (weeding, daily watering, etc.).  I never have to do anything but look under the lids and make sure the water level is up to par. 

I'm in the middle of building another one that I plan on selling in the next growing season, the one that auto fills itself and is simular to the "earth box".  I might try to grow some winter crops like lettuce or brocolli just to see what happens. 
A few quick tid-bits about the gardens, the large "stand up" one is called a NFT (nutrient film technique) system and is great for pretty much anything as long as you don't mind the roots traveling down the hoses, but my pepper plants got a little top heavy late in the season (maybe something smaller next year).  The tub looking one is a aero system in which the roots of the plants are suspended in the air and a sprinkler system mists the roots.  The Aero is best for your larger plants, see the picture of the roots of my 2 tomato plants under the lid. I built a 2 tub system, but never filled the whole thing up (too late in the season), maybe next year.  Both systems need nutrients (macro AND micro nutrients) put into the water which I get cheap online, cheap for hydroponics that is, and I use a TDS/pH combo meter (these get REALLY expensive) to measure the correct amounts about 1 time a month.   I have only filled the Aero up once this summer (about 20 gallons, and the NFT about 4 gallons every 2 weeks since the supply is smaller and it evaporates. Anyway, if you have any other questions feel free to call/email me.  I LOVE TALKING ABOUT IT.
Joe Nestelroad

 Thanks Joe for ALL THIS GREAT INFO! If anyone wants to send me a request I will forward it on to him.

NFT (nutrient film technique) system