One of the most gratifying projects in hydroponicsis to grow your own plants from seed.
Step 1: Introduction
Hydroponic seed starting
- · Grow what you want.
- · Cost effective.
- · Once germinated your seedlings already have roots adapted for drawing up nutrients directly from the hydroponic solution.
- · Sow multiple seeds per pot (saves space).
· The new seedlings are your babies and not some strangers which have been store purchased.
- · Time, it normally takes between 4 and 6 weeks for the seedlings to get to a transplantable size.
- · Not all the seeds germinate.
- · Too many plants, sometimes germination is so successful that there are too many seedlings germinated for the size of the hydroponic system.
- · Small bucket, 5 or 10 litre bucket will do.
- · Block of compressed coco-peat, (600 grams).
- · Water.
- · 7.5cm propagation pots, (5cm pots will also work).
- · Seeds.
- · Hydroponic system.
There are many ways to germinate seeds, what follows is the way in which I have found to be successful and cost effective.
Step 2: Preparing the Coco-peat
- Place the compressed block of coco-peat into the bucket and add water.
- Add enough water to allow the coco-peat block to disintegrate completely.
Step 3: Packing the Pot
- · Pack the propagation pot with the loose coco-peat to just above the solid section of the pot and tamp down.
Step 4: Sowing the Seeds
- · Sow the seeds over the top.
Step 5: Covering the Seeds
- · Cover the seeds with a layer of coco-peat approximately 5mm thick.
Step 6: Placing the Planted Pot in Your System
- · Place the pot into your hydroponic system and wait for your babies to germinate.
Step 7: Multiple Pots
- Here multiple pots can be placed close together to save space and they will not yet be competing for sunlight until they have germinated and become bigger and ready for transplanting
Step 8: Final Notes
Once this stage has been reached the seedlings are ready for transplanting into single pots, spaced further apart in the hydroponic system, to allow for growth and have less competition for sunlight.
The reason I use coco-peat as a germination medium is due to the fact that it is natural and once used it can be added to soil or your compost pile.
The next tutorial will show how to prepare and plant, shop bought seedlings in the hydroponic system.
I hope this tutorial is helpful for all the hydroponic addicts out there