Introduction: Small Indoor Hydroponics

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A few month ago i came across an article about a guy who want ,my country(Singapore) which is a dense island state to be more self sufficient in our food supply buy using hydroponics to grow vegetables on the roof of all the buildings in Singapore.
This sparked my interest which led me to this little project. A huge percentage of the cost of your fruits and vegetables came from the transportation and keeping it fresh for the journey by refrigeration which also cause lots of co2 emmisions.
So the closer the source of food it is to you the better.

What is Hydroponics?
Hydroponics is growing plants
 in water instead of soil .
It has many advantages over traditional growing such as it requires less water as water could be recycles instead of letting most of the water flow into the ground,easier to control its nutrients, no need for pesticide offers much higher yields per square foot and the best of all able to grow indoors without attracting disgusting insects.

Step 1: Parts/costs

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Things you need:
container(needs to be opaque) i got mine at ikea for around $3
2' net pots $3.20 for 10
nutrients $15 for two 1 liter bottle
Germination sponge(Optional) 
medium(i used clay pellets)$2 for a big bag. 
Air Pump (Cost depends)
Air hose (came with air pump)
Air Stone ($3)
Seeds or plant

Step 2: Cut Holes

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drill holes on the container cover for your net pots.

Step 3: Water and Air!

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Drill a small  hole on the container  for the air hose.
Add air stone.

Mix nutrients with water according to the instructions on the label (usually 1 part nutrents to 100 part water)

Fill up till it almost touch the bottom of the net pot.

Step 4: Plant 2 Pot

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Put plant onto the net pot and cover it with the clay pellets.

BTW, if you don't know how to germinate seeds,Just bury some in soil, 1 inch deep, water regularly.
when the plant is big enough, uproot it gently as not to do too much damage to the roots and wash off the soil attached to the roots.

Step 5: Put Everything Together

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1.Net pots on Cover.
2.Cover on container.
3.On the air pump.
How much Simpler can it be?

Step 6: Light Source.

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Choice 1 is the sun as first choice as it is free but i live in a small apartment so i can't use this option.

Choice 2 is Fluorescent light bulb .2 85w white bulb is more than enough for for a small system like mine.Plus it's also quite cheap.

Choice 3 is LED,the one i'm using right now.The only reason this is third is cost.the one that works costs a couple hundreds of dollars and the cheap ones(like the ones on the side in the picture) are almost completely useless.Led is good as it uses very little electricity yet has high light it focus on the specific band of light required by plant(red and blue) thus is very efficient.(my light uses only 35 w )

also if you are using and artificial light source,i recommend you buy a timer to switch the light on and off for you.

Also don't give your plant more than 16 hour of light a day.

Step 7: Give Some Time

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Give it some time to grow!


GreendeaG (author)2016-03-09

I love hydroponics have a look


Wit Knien (author)2012-09-18

I sort of made a small version of a hydroponics / aeroponics setup (it's a hybrid system just to learn the basics). In regard to fact that growing from seeds on those pellets is not very easy, I used some sort of oasis (some sort since I honestly do not know the brand) on top of the pellets and that seems to work fine.

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Wit Knien (author)Wit Knien2012-09-18

Well that didn't work out well, , displays the top view.

rbowlin7 (author)2012-07-08

what is the foil for on the lid???

zorro3355 (author)rbowlin72012-07-19

to reflect as much light as possible.

ortsa (author)2012-07-19

While its a cool project that's quite well implemented i doubt you are reducing your co2 emissions(not that it matters I'm more worried about my wallet). Buying natural gas guzzling nitrogenous fertilizers and paying for lighting seems to defeat the point.

zorro3355 (author)ortsa2012-07-19

Yes. the project is not about reducing carbon emission but more about how to grow some greens in a small apartments using hydroponics which has some advantages (eg produce higher yields in small area,use less water,no need for pesticide,and less bugs) thus more suitable for indoor growing than soil.

the reason i used artificial lighting is because my apartment doesn't revive any direct sunlight at all and i did recommend neutral sun light as a first choice if possible in step 6.

The 2 bottles are actually just basic nutrients (containing mostly metal elements) which are organic and quite cheap actually (the 2 bottles costs less than $15 and I've been using for a year and half and still has half a bottle each left).


rbowlin7 (author)2012-07-08

WoW !!!
this not only looks great but looks like something I would be able to do without too much trouble, thanks for the instructable, I'll let you know how it comes out.
I think I'll try both ways to see which one works better. my grandmother had a green thumb!!! (LOL)
mine is more like the hand ofndeath where plants are concerned..
by the way...I have been to singapore (I was in the navy), back in the 90s
very beautiful and very friendly people, the food was great too!!!!

zorro3355 (author)rbowlin72012-07-08

Sent me pictures when you're done!

zorro3355 (author)rbowlin72012-07-08

Thanks :)

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