The Urban Farmer, Issue #032 * January, 2011: New hobby? * Keep it cool  * Droopy leaves?



"After all, Eden was a garden... the garden is a place to go for quiet contemplation, a source not only of food but also of spiritual renewal and intimate contact with life's most basic processes."
            ~ Ed Smith


Think Green!

Most of us find hobbies that we love to spend time with. Here's an excellent one, which even refreshes our mind and helps us go green: hydroponics. Most of us would find it difficult to construct a vegetable garden in our house! Years ago, you wouldn't even contemplate such a thing!

So what is hydroponics? It is a method of growing plants without soil. "Without soil?", you may wonder. Yeah, exactly. In this technique, plants are grown in a solution, which contains nutrients for their growth.

The main challenge is "where to put it".  The first thing is to find a cool enough place with plenty of light (place it near windows if at all possible). The tray is to be setup there. Many kits are now available in the market to get you started. Once the garden is created, you will need to spend a fixed amount of time every day working with it. One great advantage of this technique is that it provides refreshment for the mind. A major bonus: it also gives crops for dinner. Since water is not lost in the system, you can run it for many months without heavy consumption of water. The drawbacks of this system are negligible.

So it's time to start work with your hydroponics garden now! Get started by visiting this page: 



I'll tell you straight up front... your biggest obstacle to a successful hydroponics garden will be..... heat. The lights needed to grow veggies are hot! If you're growing inside, you need to think about this. Any garden prefers a cool climate to an overly hot one. The magic numbers: keep the temp between 65-80 degrees.

Here are some ways you can cool things off:

    *Crack the window open in cool/cold weather.
    *In winter, close off some of the heat getting to the growroom.
    *Use a fan to blow heat away from the plants.
    *Get a grow-light equipped with exhaust tubing & inline exhaust fan.
    *Keep A/C thermostat at 72-76 degrees. Can't afford that?
      Buy a portable A/C or small window unit for your grow-room.

Hydro Tip of the Month

Got droopy leaves?


Possible reasons:
Temp too high [cool it down]
Not enough fluids [check that system is delivering enough solution]
Nutrient solution too strong [flush plants with clear water only for a week, then restart with a new batch of nutrient solution]


We hope you have enjoyed this issue of The Urban Farmer Ezine. Each month, we will bring you another inspiring photo, gardening quote or idea, plus fresh new hydroponics news, techniques & products.

Insiders tips to get you growing...


~Stella and Simon from Hydroponics-Simplified.


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