Introduction: Mojitonator - Easy, Cheap, Small Hydroponic System
This is a very basic and easy hydroponic system to build. You will be drinking fresh mojitos all year long! The plant's roots grow in a nutrient solution aerated by an air pump with an air stone. You can put it on your patio, window sill or add artificial lighting for winter growing indoors. This is not only for minth. You could grow, basil, lettuce, hot peppers, etc.
Step 1: Make Your Mint Cuttings
- Cut a minimum of 4 branches with 4-5 set of leaves.
- Remove the leaves from the two bottom sets
- Boil some water and make yourself a mint infusion :)
- Put the cuttings in water. Don't let leaves touch the water, just stems.
- Roots will show after 3-4 days. It's very quick. You can put them in your Mojitonator after a week or two.
Step 2: Materials & Tools
I bought all my stuff from an hydroponic shop that I like because of the service and expertise they offer. My links point to their products. They ship to Canada & US. You can also find some of the materials in a petshop and hardware store. The mesh pots, hydroponic nutrient, expanded clay and water level indicator willl be hard to find elsewhere.
- 1 Plastic Bucket (2 gal)
- 4 Mesh pots (3.5 in)
- 1 Air pump
- 1 Air stone with tubing
- Hydroponic nutrients (1 l of A + 1 l of B solution)
- Expanded clay
- 4 Water Rooted Mint Cuttings
- 1 Water Level indicator (optional)
- Exacto knife
- Drill bits
- 3.5" Hole saw (optional)
Step 3: Make Holes in the Lid for the Mesh Pots
You need to make 4 holes to hold the 4 mesh pots in the lid of the 2 gal bucket.
With Hole Saw
- Use a 3.5" hole saw on your drill and make 4 holes in the lid
Without Hole Saw
- Draw 4 circles on your lid
- Cutout with exacto knife
- You can also use a small drill bit and make multiple holes following the lines you made and then finish the job with the exacto knife.
Step 4: Make Holes for the Air Pump Tubing and Water Lever Indicator
Air Pump Tubing
- Make a hole with a drill bit the size of the tubing between two mesh pots hole in the lid.
- Put the tube through the hole and insert air stone at the end.
Water Level Indicator
- Make sure the hole is not to big for the water level indicator to squeezed tight in the hole.
- Ajuste the height of the indicator with maximum water in the bucket
Step 5: Make the Hydroponic Solution
Hydroponic Growth Solution
- Fill your bucket until the water level is 1/2 to 3/4 inch higher then the bottom of the mesh pot.
- Follow the instructions on your nutrient bottles. Mine was 25 ml of A solution + 25 ml of B solution.
- For optimum growth you should adjust the pH. But its not crucial. You would need a pH pen and a pH up or down solution.
Step 6: Put Your Mint Cutting in the Mesh Pots
It's now time to put your rooted cutting in the mesh pots.
- Make sure the roots are in the water. Add water if necessary.
- Fill the mesh pot with expanded clay while holding the cutting
- To make the plant more bushy, cut the main stem under the first set of leaves. New shoots will appear at every nodes under it.
- If you started seedlings in a rockwool cube, wait for roots to come out of the bottom of the cube to put them in your system. Just drop them a the bottom of the mesh pot, touching slightly the water.
- For the first two weeks keep an eye on the water level so the cubes don't dry out.
Step 7: Place the Mojitonator in a Sunny Spot
- You can put your Mojitonator on your patio. If you use a black bucket, it might get hot. Paint it white or put something over it. Don't use a white bucket. The sun will go thought the bucket and make algae in your solution.
- Find a sunny spot in your house or add lighting made for plants. I use these Sunblaster 48" led light strips.
Step 8: Make a Kickass Orange Mojito Recipe!
- 20 fresh mint leaves
- 1/4 cup (60 ml) sugar
- 2 cups (500 ml) cold club soda or soda water
- 3/4 cup (180 ml) white rum
- 3/4 cup (180 ml) orange juice (preferably freshly squeezed)
- 1/4 cup (60 ml) lime juice
- 1/2 orange, thinly sliced
- In a mortar, crush the mint with the sugar. Pour into a pitcher. Add the remaining ingredients, except for the ice cubes, and stir to combine.
- Serve in highball glasses filled with ice. Garnish with orange slices.
Recipe source : https://www.ricardocuisine.com/en/recipes/4856-ora...