Want to grow your own vegetables or house plants, but lack space to do so? A small hydroponic setup on your balcony could be the answer.
Hydroponics replaces the use of traditional growth mediums like soil with a nutrient and mineral-rich water solution. Here’s a simple guide to setting up the system.
Use recyclable plastic bottles, containers and PET bottles to design the unit, utilising growth mediums like rockwool, clay pellets, cocopeat, perlite or vermiculite.
Prepare a nutrient solution by using calcium nitrate, potassium sulfate and nitrate, monopotassium phosphate, magnesium sulfate, trace elements, and water.
Cut the neck of a recycled water bottle. The top part will be used as a holder for the growth medium and sprouting roots while the bottom works as the water reservoir.
Drill a hole in the cap and insert double ropes through the hole, then tie a knot at the rope ends to prevent them from slipping. Keep the length of the wick long.
Invert the holder structure with the cap on and place it on the water reservoir, and fill the holder with the growth medium you picked.
Dig evenly spaced tiny holes on the surface of the medium using your fingers. Place seeds into the holes and cover them with the medium. Then sprinkle water to moisten it.
Fill the bottom with clean water and add the nutrient mix. Ensure the solution level is high enough to submerge the wick.
Refill the water tank when you sense the water level is going down. Test the nutrient and water levels every week.