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Grunt
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101 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
For those so inclined and of the mindset to produce their own as I am trying to do, here is a link to my compliment to raised bed and container gardening. It is allowing production through the winter as well.

It also gives me yet another project to expend energy on and to learn another skill set. The principles may come in handy as far as size, scale, and scope.

Some family and friends asked me to provide updates, so I figured this was the easiest way to do it with photos and video as well as updates. Also serves as a journal.

Frugal Hydroponics
 

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Grunt
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101 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·


The above photo was taken on November 27th. This is after many harvests which have kept it and the basil trimmed back.

We are at day 27 days (in the photo, 36 days as of today) in the ebb and flow system and this has produced many salads and BLTs. Probably $10 to $15 in lettuce. We have used several batches of basil and have quite a bit in the freezer as well.

I am building 2 DWC systems to allow continuous harvests of lettuce. I'll post when I get it up and running both here and on the blog.

Thanks for all the input from many folks....this first run has been exceptional in all regards and I learned and confirmed alot!
 

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Smart grid will say ya using to much juice and cut ya back. Knock on the door at 4 AM, busted illegal food growing operation. It's for your own safety of course. Not yet but soon so keep any growing operation under ya hat, just in case. I do like hydroponics and it works, for i used it 30 years ago and believe me it worked really good. :beercheer:
 

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not knocking it but nutrition and time wise lettuce is not a good choice to grow.
sprouts are where it's at. mung bean sprouts, alfalfa, clover, broccoli, all will provide you with better nutritional value, most with less light, water and harvest much faster some as little as 2 days

Brassica Sprout Central
 

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Smart grid will say ya using to much juice and cut ya back. Knock on the door at 4 AM, busted illegal food growing operation. It's for your own safety of course. Not yet but soon so keep any growing operation under ya hat, just in case. I do like hydroponics and it works, for i used it 30 years ago and believe me it worked really good. :beercheer:
:eek: I hadn't thought of that.
 

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Grunt
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101 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·

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Grunt
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101 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Here is the newest system I built. This is as about as cheap and simple as it gets and still produces results far superior to soil.


This will allow a fully rotational crop to keep us in greens year round!!
 

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Grunt
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101 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
That is a neat little system, looks like it works good to.
We will find out very soon. I have rosemary, thyme, basil, cilantro, and spearmint germinating. Once germinated, they will spend about 7 days under the lights growing roots and then will be transplanted into the DWC. If they act like they did in the ebb and flow system, we will see some explosive growth in the first 10 days.
 

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Grunt
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101 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Cheap and Efficient Lighting



Here is the setup for the light system I use for starting veggies in the spring and for growing hydroponically throughout the winter.

The lights are covering the ebb and flow hydroponic system growing lettuce in this photo.
 

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Sr. Homesteader
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437 Posts
Very nice setup, I just do not have enough extra power to accommodate. I'm presently using the blue/red 12vdc LEDs, seems to work so far in the 'pit'.
Hehehe... bunkerbob!

The PIT? :eek:

...conjures up an old film of the 50's :D

(modern version)

I call mine "the cave"... but there are no bats ;)

- Basey

ps... how bout shrooms?
 

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Grunt
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101 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Very nice setup, I just do not have enough extra power to accommodate. I'm presently using the blue/red 12vdc LEDs, seems to work so far in the 'pit'.
Can you elaborate on the LEDs? How much you are growing, number of LEDs, etc? Wave of the future for sure!
 

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1,733 Posts

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Grunt
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101 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Bob, how would you rate that grow light? Is it working well and how far from the plants do you need to have it? I would be curious to see the potatoes.

Thanks!
 

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performing monkey
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4,230 Posts
This is what I purchased... 225 LED GROW LIGHT PANEL RED BLUE HYDROPONIC LAMP 12V - eBay (item 300502990112 end time Jan-08-11 18:24:04 PST) I have a begonia, ivy and potatoes growing right now on a timer 8am to 5pm. I have tried mushrooms from a kit, $50 and about 25 mushrooms, hum! kinda expensive, I may try getting the spore mycelium and making my own beds.
saw this while trying to answer my own question about mushroom lighting:

Colonizing substrate should be kept in dark to make sure the substrate doesn't pin prematurely. Fully colonized substrate should be introduced to light to initiate pinning - light "tells" the substrate that the conditions are right for forming fruit bodies (light is only one of the factors though, the others are lack of uncolonized substate, drop in temperature and lower CO2 levels).

Only a dim light is needed, anything too bright or warm will harm the cakes. A fluorescent lamp or indirect sunlight is plenty of light. But basically any kind of visible light will do. Only a few hours of light per day is all that is needed, 10 hours is overkill. ( the book Mushroom Cultivator states that 8-10 hours of light is recommended, but the experience shows that much less is sufficient). A source with a wide spectrum of light, especially containing lots of bluish light (natural daylight or white fluorescent lights are very good examples of light with lots of blue) is best, but a low wattage incandescent light (25 watts is plenty) not too close to the colony will work well too. Also the use of x-mass lights has been reported successful.
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I love shrooms (and want to grow as opposed to gathering them) but I'm the only one in the house that does :(
 

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Premium Member
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Just between you and me, and well I guess everyone else on the forum to, these are for those entrepreneurial special cigarette folks that grow their own, the house plants are thriving and the potatoes are just popping up. I added a full spectrum CF bulb because it is a bit chilli down there right now.
 

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Grunt
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101 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
A positive "side benefit" of those "entrepeneurs" is the advancement of lighting tech which makes it easier for all of us to grow better starts and crops indoors.

There is so much "noise" in the LED marketing world that it is hard to decipher quality products and actual effectiveness beyond bold claims. I believe LED are the future, or at least an offshoot of LED technology. Unfortunately, it is stil soct prohibitive, but the market is flooded with cheap, low-quality LEDs to further muddy the waters.

I continue to get mixed reviews in my searches.
 

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Premium Member
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1,733 Posts
saw this while trying to answer my own question about mushroom lighting:

Colonizing substrate should be kept in dark to make sure the substrate doesn't pin prematurely. Fully colonized substrate should be introduced to light to initiate pinning - light "tells" the substrate that the conditions are right for forming fruit bodies (light is only one of the factors though, the others are lack of uncolonized substate, drop in temperature and lower CO2 levels).

Only a dim light is needed, anything too bright or warm will harm the cakes. A fluorescent lamp or indirect sunlight is plenty of light. But basically any kind of visible light will do. Only a few hours of light per day is all that is needed, 10 hours is overkill. ( the book Mushroom Cultivator states that 8-10 hours of light is recommended, but the experience shows that much less is sufficient). A source with a wide spectrum of light, especially containing lots of bluish light (natural daylight or white fluorescent lights are very good examples of light with lots of blue) is best, but a low wattage incandescent light (25 watts is plenty) not too close to the colony will work well too. Also the use of x-mass lights has been reported successful.
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I love shrooms (and want to grow as opposed to gathering them) but I'm the only one in the house that does :(
I don't have a light over the white button mushrooms until they have matured, then I put a UV bulb on them, this way they produce more vit D.
 
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