Monday, August 22, 2016

Using Hydroponics To Grow African Violets

This article will discuss how hydroponics farming technology could be used to farm African Violets indoors or commercially within an acceptable budget.

Hydroponic farming is a system that uses soil-less medium to produce most of the produce and fruits available in super markets today, around the World. It uses soil only as a support mechanism. On it’s natural environment, African violet will thrive by using it’s roots to secure food.

It will expand the root network as necessary, in order to feed itself. But with hydroponics, the grower would assume that responsibility. Once the entire farming mechanism is set up, all that would be required on the part of the farmer is a commitment to tend to the plant indoors.

If that is done the farmer can expect a higher than appropriate return in investment. This will work because there is abundant evidence that it does work. Individuals and corporations are using hydroponics to reel in amazing amount of dividend. It is cheaper to use hydroponics production system because it is more effective, it is cleaner and it does not entail a lot of repetitive chores, such as weed watching and insect monitoring.

On the natural environment, African violet will require adequate lighting to grow and to glow. That lighting requirement would be met adequately by a well set up hydroponic system. The use of a proper HID or high intensity charging fluorescent light indoors will satisfy the light requirement.

For temperature this flower needs 60 to 80 degrees temperature to achieve optimal potential.

For that, the farmer would have to adjust the indoor temperature accordingly. For feeding the plant would be adequately fed via the hydroponics system, the plant would not need to waste time and energy in developing extensive root network, because this mechanism will provide all needed nutrients from a nutrition system that had already been formulated.

There would be no need for a separate fertilization system, because all of that is incorporated in the hydroponics technology.

 The African violet will bloom with lush, because the possibility of insect attack would be highly minimized. Therefore on the whole the farmer stands to gain significantly. Given that the product would be given all the necessary ingredients needed to blossom, it would be protected from all pesticide, the only option for the plant would be to grow and thrive.

The African violet would be happy it will be sweet to the eye, and the farmer will be rewarded financially and emotionally for a job well done. African violets is one of those flowers regarded as a high value product, so the potential for high reward for the farmer is quite good.

Hydroponics Growing Without Soil

The growing of plants without soil is called Hydroponics. It is widely used to grow lush, healthy indoor plants and good quality vegetables, fruits and herbs. Plants absorb nutrients as simple ions in water. The nutrients in the soil dissolve in water and the plant roots absorb them.

When the plants get adequate nutrients, the soil is no longer required for the plant to thrive. With the use of proper nutrients and the right artificial light source, an indoor gardener can achieve amazing results. A complete controlled environmental agriculture system should have controlled light, temperature, water, CO2, oxygen, pH and nutrients. Hydroponics is simple and efficient. On alternate days a pH check is done and the water level is topped up. The nutrient is changed every 7 – 12 days. To turn the light and garden on and off automatically, a timer is often used.

Amongst the different forms of Hydroponics, deep water is the purest form since the roots are directly exposed to the nutrient solution. “Deep Water” systems use a small air pump to keep the solution well oxygenated. Another method of Hydroponics is the Ebb & Flow or Flooding & Draining systems. The root system and growing mediums like Rockwool are soaked at specific intervals. The Ebb & Flow method makes it easier to cultivate plants in minimal space.

In Deep Water Culture (DWC), the roots are allowed to drop down into an aerated nutrient solution. This solution is aerated with the help of standard aquarium pumps and sir stones. The solution must be topped up from time to time. Drip feeding is similar to Ebb & Flow, except that the pump delivers a continuous tickle of nutrients and water.

The emitters run 5 to 10 minutes every hour. Another method of Hydroponics is Wick feeding, where the plant draws water with the help of a wick which runs from the base of the plant container to a bottle of nutrient feed solution. Through capillary action, the solution travels up to the plant through the wick. In Raft cultivation, plants are inserted inside sheets of expanded polystyrene with the roots hanging down through the holes.

The sheet is then floated in a shallow tank of nutrient solution. In Nutrient film technique (NFT), the plants grow through light-proof plastic films placed over shallow, gently sloping channels. The roots grow into dense mats with a thin film of nutrients passing over them.

Aeroponics is a class of Hydroponics where the roots of a plant are suspended in a midst or fog of nutrient rich solution. Different media are used for Hydroponics. Expanded clay, Rockwool, Coco coir, Perlite, Vermiculite and Oasis root cubes are some of them. Due to constant problems of chemicals and other contaminants in the food supply, people are looking for a safer alternative. Hydroponics fits the requirement appropriately.

Hydroponics Gardening

Many gardeners are beginning to switch to Hydroponics gardening for many different reasons. These types of gardens are small and can easily be grown inside and are perfect for most vegetables, especially the red tomato. Also the equipment required for Hydroponics gardening is not expensive and they are relatively easy to manage. Hydroponics gardening is the growing of plants without soil, in other words, “dirtless gardening”.

There are many methods of Hydroponics gardening, most of which work better than regular soil gardening because it is easier to give the plant exactly what it needs when it needs it. Plants will only receive what you give them; therefore you will be able to regulate the pH, nutrients, nutrient strength, water amount, and light amount.

This makes it imperative that you research the kind of plants you will be growing so you know what they need to survive. Hydroponics gardening is only as difficult as you make it. It can be complicated if computers with sensors are used to control water cycles, nutrients, and light for the plants. However, it can also be as simple as a hand watered bucket with a single plant.

The normal home Hydroponics system is usually made up of a few basic things: a growing tray, light (natural or artificial), a reservoir, a water controlled pump for watering (or some type of watering equipment), and some form of air pump to give oxygen to the nutrients. The growing medium used in Hydroponics gardening can be any number of things, such as Rockwool, perlite, coconut fiber, gravel, sand, vermiculite, or even air.

You can get instructions from a gardening store or online or buy separate parts and build your own. There are also kits already assembled for sale in gardening supply stores. There are certain micro-nutrients that are necessary for healthy plant growth including magnesium, sulfur, calcium, cobalt, boron, iron, copper, manganese, and zinc.

These nutrients are absolutely essential to plants and if missing could cause the food to not be as healthy and in some cases even cause health problems for those who eat it. It is very important that you use a quality fertilizer when Hydroponics gardening. Another important aspect of Hydroponics gardening that must be closely regulated is the pH balance. When the pH balance varies the plants will lose the ability to absorb nutrients that it needs.

The ease with which the pH in Hydroponics gardening is tested and controlled give it a huge advantage over regular dirt gardening. Even though there are hundreds of different variations, Wick, Water Culture, Ebb and Flow, Drip, N.F.T., and Aeroponic are the six most basic types of Hydroponics gardening systems. Hydroponics gardening is easy, affordable, and you can have fresh produce, flowers, herbs & spices all year long!