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18 plant setup for under 100 bux

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fleshstain

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recently i was looking for an easy DIY setup to try hydroponics and decided to try out the Ron's Garden plans i had found....his original plans, as many of you are aware, use 2-liter bottles filled with grow rocks as your containers/cups....the original plan is also for an 11 plant garden that will fit in a 2' x 3' area....wanting to utilize the most out of my 4' x 4' are i had a pretty good idea and gave it a try....and it worked very easily....my idea was to replace 3 of the T's with 4-way's and basically mirrow the design....i've attached a pic so you can tell what i mean....the 2 T's close together act as the grow site and drain tube outlet and you can tell where i put the hose inlet....the entire unit, with a 35ga rubbermaid reservoir, cost right at 40 bux to build....the most expensive part will obviously be the pump and my buddy at Texas Hydroponics recommends at least a 633gph....enjoy and let me know what ya'll think....and just in case your wondering the conduit clamps are to mount it to my sawhorses and the hose clamp was for a T that i didn't notice was cracked....
 

massproducer

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So what type of system is this? Is it an ebb and flow? Are the 2 liter pop bottles strong enough to hold a plant in full flower?

Pretty cool design, good luck with your grow.
 
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fleshstain

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it's an ebb and flow system....and i'm hoping that the bottles won't have any problem with heavier producers....my buddy built the 11 plant system and uses it on his balcony for growing herbs and peppers....he's grown huge tomota plants in it with no problem so i think they're sturdy enough....
 

massproducer

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Sounds and looks good. The one suggestion I have is to have some plant ties(they are basically twist ties made of plastic and come on a roll) handy just incase your ladies get too heavy, and have a plan if case this does happen.

I always like to plan for the worst, so I do not get freaked out if I get it. So just come up with a plan on how you could tie your plants down, like where you would anchor the ties and try to visualize what it would look like if it did become an issue. I am not saying that it will become an issue, but it is better to be safe then sorry, cause believe me it is crappy to see all your sweat and tears go down the drain, from not being prepared for every situation.

I am sure that you have everything under control I just wanted to add something that I thought may help. Feel free to totally disregard my advice, I just have lost plants because they got too heavy for my system and I was not prepared, so I had to chop em. I almost cried, I am actually getting kind of teary eyed now just thinking about them.

But for real, good luck on your grow and keep us informed on how everything works out.
 

massproducer

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Last thing, if you do have to tie them, do not use regular string because it rots and molds very easy, which can jump to your buds, and thats rather crappy also.
 
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fleshstain

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i know all about the weight issues....i've grown big bud and power plant a few times and learned my lesson about the heavyweights....my next few crops are gonna be pot of gold from flying dutchmen....instead of tying them up like in the past i think i'm gonna use strawberry netting for support....
 

JusSumguy

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years ago I used this same design. It was my first setup. It won't work. The roots get clogged at the little tiny neck of the bottle pretty much as soon as they begin to flower. Sometimes even sooner. Use 4" PVC sewer line and bore 3" holes in em with a hole saw Use the 3" baskets from the pot shop. Do everything else the same. Even the 3" baskets get root bound. I've finally gave in and went with 6 gallon buckets with an elaborate feed/evacuate system. My scents.
 
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Stoney Bud

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Jussumguy has given you very good advice and prob saved you a bunch of time and frustration. I've used several versions of the system you've built and he's perfectly correct in telling you that the necks of the bottles will clog with roots; they will. Even very small pot plants will clog these bottle necks long before flowering has completed.

You can try to grow using this system, but I would flower the plants as soon as you can to try to cut down on the size of the root mass. It may still not work.

I've included photos of systems that use the larger pipe and net baskets. I use two of the 48 plant systems for my garden plants outside in a greenhouse. The tomato plants FILL the pipe with roots. This is what I'm trying to explain to you in using the tiny system you've built. The roots will ruin your day.

Good luck to you.

4 plant system-2.jpg


4 plant system-1.jpg


48 Plant System-1.jpg


48 Plant System-2.jpg
 

JusSumguy

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One more thing. Don't glue the joints. Just use heavy duty marine grease on the joints. It won't leak and you can disassemble it for moving or cleaning.
 
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fleshstain

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thanks for the advice guys....for the most part i've scrapped this idea....i was thinking of trying hydro since i've been having soil problems lately....i've started using straight light warrior in 3 ga pots with about a 2" layer of grow rocks on the bottom....i can fit 9 plants in a 3x3 pattern in the 3'x3' grow tray my buddy just recently gave me....i'm just gonna top feed/water and use the tray for drainage into a bucket rather than individual plant trays....so far so good....my 4 Popcorn seedlings are 10 days old and forming there 4th set of bladed leaves....i just got my Pot of Gold seeds and wound up with some NL#5 freebies....Maple Leaf Indica and Strawberry Cough are on there way too....almost makes me wish i never had to leave the house....
 

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