Well much to my amazement the lettuce seeds germinated in four days taking one step out of my process now. I guess I will never put lettuce seed into a paper towel to germinate ever again. Talk about making things that much easier, I just sprinkled the seed onto the two inch net cup filled with hydroton.
I will get a photo of the little guys and post soon. I just had to brag about my new discovery.
I decided to try something new and see if it works. I am talking about starting my seed right in the two inch cup with hydroton. The seed I chose is one of the smallest, the lettuce seed. I just sprinkled some seed on top of the hydroton and let gravity take over. Some seed did make it through all the cracks but I just put that seed right back through the process until no seed fell through.
I then carefully placed the cups in my aeroponic bucket system where I hope in a week or so I will see sprouts. The reason I am doing this is to see if I get a stronger rooted plant in a two inch cup. I have had great success using the paper towel method to germinate my seeds. Where it gets crucial is when placing the new sprout into the net cup. I try to center the plants and get them 2/3 the way into the cup, then covered with hydroton pellets. I like to have the plants come up through the hydroton just like growing in soil placing the seedling sprout a half inch or more under the soil.
So we will see what happens. The rest of these plants were started about four weeks ago and are doing well but I can tell they want some natural sunlight. Soon I hope, the temps are still around freezing at night.
Growing a garden isn’t new but the plant marijuana has changed and introduced new alternative ways of growing plants. These new ways of growing can and most times outperform growing in soil and doesn’t take any more time to manage. These Alternate methods are:
Most people have heard about hydroponics and may understand how it works or may not. But it is fascinating how water, nutrients and minerals is all a plant needs to grow along with sunlight or artificial light. Basically all three systems have one thing in common and that is the movement of water. I personally have found that keeping the water moving at all times keeps the water in a healthy state. No matter which system is used the moving water is important. One great benefit all three offers are the conservation of water compared to growing in soil. During the summer months my outdoor aeroponic system would use up to four gallons a day. In soil I would use at least 20 gallons a day.
I discovered growing with aeroponics a couple of years ago and when I saw that NASA invented it for growing plants in space it had my attention. The system they developed was very complicated as you can imagine due to zero gravity but to take their concepts and apply them here on Earth with gravity was very easy to do. I made my own DIY Aeroponic system and the results were and still are amazing.
Aquaponics has to be the coolest way to alternative growing and possibly the best sustainable method. The system not only grows plants but it also grows fish. By feeding the fish the bio system delivers the waste from the fish to the plants where the water gets filtered and returns as fresh clean water to the fish. For a large scale eco growing system this maybe what a future farmer may use.