Hand Watering!

by Margaret
(Port Charlotte, Florida)

Hello! I recently invested in several stacker pots to raise some veggies on my patio. I am looking to feed the plants by hand watering from the top. Each pot has its own bottom reservoir that spills over to the next pot, and so on down to the bottom plate. The plants are in a 50/50 coco coir/perlite mix and the solution drips down from the top until the bottom plate receives the excess (essentially a drain to waste system). I am making gh nutrient solution in two gallon batches. How often will I need to feed the plants? Once a week or do I water with the nutrient solution every time. Or do I use the same topping off principle as with a reservoir in an automated drip system? or do I alternate with plain water? I don't want to underfeed or overfeed, but don't understand if the same concept applies to hand watering. Many thanks to anyone who can help.
---------------------------
Answer from Stella/Simon:

Hi Margaret,

I'll be honest, we have never tried the stackers, and don't know what to advise you to do. Did any instructions come with those pots?

You might try asking these folks, they are also in Florida and make the vertigro pots:

http://vertigro.com/contactus.php

Sorry we couldn't be more help!
Simon

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Comments for Hand Watering!

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Mar 19, 2011
Hand watering help
by: Mark

I hand water my seedlings in rockwool. No nutrient (just pH your water to 6.0 that way if it changes you have leeway in both directions 5.5 to 6.5) until a good root system is established and the plants have 2 to 4 true leaves. For my lettuce seed it is about 2 weeks. You will have to water with nutrient after that every time. But I wouldn't go as long as a week in between. I find in CA weather that I go about 2 to 4 times daily, the root hairs can dry out very fast causing stunted growth or death. Instead of hand watering your planters I would just rig up some sort of wire rack over a 5 gallon bucket with a small pump and spaghetti tubing with a few .5 or 1 gallon per minute drip emitters on stakes on the top bucket 24/7. Put them on the rack or shelf over the 5 gallon pail to create a vertical recirculating system. Throw an air stone in the bucket to keep aerated and just follow the regular GH instructions. I know this website has a great feeding plan with K.I.S.S. You will save so much time and effort in doing it this way. I do a similar style system for wheatgrass flats in my greenhouse. I basically created a modified nft / drip system. You should be able to do this for under $50$, but it will pay dividends on yields and your time spent tending your garden. Just make sure you pay attention to ?rise? when you buy your pump. It needs to be strong enough to get the water up to the top planter. You should only have to monitor pH about once a day and just make sure your nute doesn't get too strong via evaporation and transpiration (ppm). I will be posting pics to this site in the next week for my NFT greens and my home made wheatgrass system to help out so stay posted. If you have any questions either facebook me facebook.com/markamolitor or post to this blog. I am always interested in helping people grow their own food. As you go you will find this hobby to become a lifestyle which often becomes a sickness (in a good way)! I cant get enough! :) We have a greenhouse in MN and CA now. Support your local growers or even better, become one!

Sep 15, 2011
switch to this for best results
by: easy

go 100% coco with House & Garden nutrients. Use Great White for your bennies and fungi. use 2 gallon smart pots and drain to waste. water up to 3 times a day. make sure you buy good coco coir like royal gold.


best mix and way to get a great yield with the flavors of soil. Its what the pros do. enjoy...

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