Hydroponic Float System





Introduction: Hydroponic Float System

This is a completely passive hydroponic float system suitable for fast growing crops in cool weather

Step 1: Here's a List of What You'll Need

a container
a piece of 1.5 to 2" sheet styrofoam cut to fit your container
a 2.5" hole saw
foam cups
Jiffy peat pellets

Step 2: Drill Holes Through the Styrofoam

you'll probably have to drill through from both sides. I made a template for my hole spacing

Step 3: Now Prep Your Cups

Tear a couple holes in each cup and them place them in the frame, they need to stick through no more than a quarter of an inch

Step 4: Mx Up Your Nutrient Mixture

either use a good hydroponic nutrient OR two teaspoons of miracle gro + a teaspoon of epsom salt per a gallon OR two teaspoons of peter's 20-20-20 per gallon.

Step 5: Finally Put It Alltogether

pour the nutrient solution into your container, place the foam in the solution, place the cups in the holes in the foam and drop the long forgotten peat pellets in the cups, wait an hour or so for the pellets to swell up and sprinkle your seed on top of them and you're done.

Yield can be improved by the addition of an airstone and pump, but then you lose the convienience of a purley passive system.



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    very nice... technically using peat removes the hydroponic name from it... but meh, who cares what "they" say? What will you be growing? That looks perfect for baby lettuce :D A -- this is one of my favorite growing methods. You can also used recycled plastic cups from a local college party... Just wash out those red beer cups :P

    You weren't supposed to notice that! Still over the lifetime of the crop 6-8 weeks the leeching of nutrients from the peat should be minuscule since they're tied up in organic compounds that need to decay. Rockwool could be substituted. It is for lettuce, can't believe I forgot that. loose leaf not head lettuce

    I still don't think that this is real hydroponics. I think it is sorta an hybrid system.

    Search hydroponics and DWC

    Nice job. That hole-cutting exercise is just screaming for a hot-wire setup. One question-- do you leave the big foam tray (with all of the little peat/seed cups) floating in the container 24x7 for as long as you're growing, or what?

    Yes, do a search of "Deep Water Culture" or DWC hydroponics

    be sure to use an opaque container though... otherwise you're asking for algae problems (nutrient rich water doesn't help that either :P).

    Yeah it's like ron popeil "Set it and forget it", once you put it together it just floats until harvest time.

    when designing a system its also good to keep in mind that some plants prefer nitrate and, while others prefer ammonium , mixing the two in the right balance allows for more efficient nitrogen removal from the system, there is information on which plants uptake which , corn uptakes both, is tricky to grow hydroponically but I found they keep nitrogen levels in check.

    I have a well established 30 gallon fish tank. After doing some aquaponic research, I decided to give it a try. Its a bit different that your suggestion, but same basic idea..

    I took foam board, cut holes in it (various sizes, will explain). Then used a nylon stocking to cover the board on the bottom, so my plants dont fall through, and can hopefully still push their roots through. That's my theory, Ill let you know if it works. I didn't have netting pots available, but did have nylon, and foam. In my holes I have tiny seeds (lettuce and Kale),1 baby spider plant (I pushed the roots through the netting), and 2 fresh avacado seeds (large). I did a few diffent things to see how and if things would grow.

    I wanted to know if I could start the seeds directly on the water. They are not submerged.They are sitting on top of the nylon, on top of the water.The bubbles coming from my air pump are misting them. I am hoping they will open up and give root, and that the root will push through the nylon to reach the water. If not, assuming they do start as is, I will gently pull the roots though when its time. The avacado seeds are sitting snug in the foam holes and are 1/2 way submerged, with the netting underneath. Again, hopefully the roots are able to push through the netting, but if not, when the time comes, I will push them through.

    This is just a prototype. I did not have to go to the store and buy any materials. I am currently working on a different type of Aquaponics test, Also using materials I have at home. I have a Plant trough (small plastic planter box) and made a drain pipe in the center to control water level, that drains back into the fishtank (gravity drain. It is on top of the tank). A pond pump that draws water from the tank, and pours it into the plant trough. There is gravel in the trough, and the plants will sit in the gravel (havent gotten this far yet). I have also read that you can put seeds directly into the gravel, and I plan on doing it. So basicly, the plants are fed by the fish waste (poop, and uneaten fish food), the water is filtered by the gravel, and then drains back into the tank. Good for the fish, good for the plants! And a great way to recycle water.. as opposed to 90% of water being wasted by planting in the ground.

    I will keep everyone updated. And make changes to my systems as I learn more. Again, these 2 projects cost me 0$ because I had all the materials needed already:

    Pond pump, existing fish tank, foam board, nylon stockings, gravel, plant trough, small piece of pipe (for drain), seeds