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New grower needs help with a few things

Nach22

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Hey guys,
This is my first post as i am new to the fourm but I've been reading it for a few weeks and like the fact that i can talk to some informed growers to get some advice.

I just started growing my first plants about a week ago. I just dropped a few seeds in a plastic container with soil and put a flouracent light over it and now i have 8 2 inch plants. My plan is to eventually switch these plants to a hydro system. My first question is how long should i wait before i switch them over, and can i even do this?? Here is my plan for they hydro system. I am planning on getting a few 5 gallon buckets and putting about 4 gallons of water/nutrient solution (thinking of using MaxiGro and MaxiBloom dry nuetrients, are these strong enough??) then putting a standard fish tank air pump at the bottom. Then i'm going to place a circular peice of styrafoam so that it floats on the water/nutrients. With holes cut in the styrafoam i am going to place strayfoam cups with holes in them filled with peralite growing medium in the cut holes. I read about this set up online but has anyone actually done it or heard of it working? Also I am looking to purchase a 250 or 400 watt hps light with ballast anyone know where i could find one online. Thanks a lot guys and happy smoking.

-Nach
 

Mutt

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Gen. Hydro makes "maxi-bloom" and "Maxi-Gro". I use the maxi-bloom on dirt. but if I was going hydro. I'd probably go with there Flora series 3-part mix. put the hydro guys will steer you better.
I would get a 400W HID. you'll be happier. I use a 250W due to my area. but I would recommend a 400W any day to someone setting up. you will outgrow a 250W.
I'll let the hydro guys help you out the rest of the way.

Check out. insidesun.com
I was very happy with there service and prices.
 

Nach22

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-Jezek
That is actually the exact same page i found when i was looking into setting up a hydro grow room. My only question is about the nutrients, i've looked at so many online and i am still not set on which one to use. I keep getting confused between nutrients for soil and ones for hydro. Could you or anyone else give me some help about what nutrients to use for my setup?
Thanks.
-Nach
 

jezek

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sorry nach i just started growing tuesday but today i went and bought a bag of hydroton "expanded clay" for the medium it was $5 for the bag and i bought higrow furt ill let you know how those work but thats what the lady sugested so im gonna try um, i have that setup but i bought netpots aswell to work a little better but the hydroton works well ive heard and its cheap
 

Mummyscurse

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"Nach22", Is your proposed growing setup the same as that pictured on that instructive link, to the extent that the containers, the cups, are only about 3" in diameter? That strikes me as being awfully prone to becoming rootbound, awfully fast...or do I miss the point of this system, that the roots will quickly extend outside the containers, growing freely in the oxygenated, nute fortified water? Is becoming "pot bound" even an issue in this type of hydroponics setup...I just don't get 3" pots for plants the size these can reach. Seems more like a single, 8" or 10" net pot, in each piece of styrofoam, in each container, makes the most sense, to produce gonzo sized plants.

I must say, after days of reading these forum posts, and filtering about a gazillion ideas regarding hydroponics setups, this approach has much to recommend it (to my inexperienced, untutored eye). For one, you're not moving water all over, through hoses and valves; you're simply aerating a container of standing water. Individual pots, with no base drain unit necessary, seems to be more flexible in moving components around, in a pinch, and easier to get at those pots in the rear, if need be.

I suppose the thing that runs contrary to logic for me, is the idea of immersing plants roots in water, and leaving them there! All I can think of is root rot. I can only conclude that it is the aeration in the solution that is the crucial difference maker, in providing beneficial oxygen to the root system. Interesting thread...I'd like to know more about the relative yield of this system over ebb and flow, drip, and any of their derivations. I know that ebb and flow techniques are popular here; has anyone used BOTH systems, and care to comment on their efficacy? What's the biggest disadvantage of this water bucket appoach?
 

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