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Are there any plans for a hydroponic system?

I have been surfing the net for about 5 years and this is the first site I have ever seen that was this informational without having to pay for something. If I ran a web site that allowed me to put up your banner I would. I am Building my own Hydroponic system just because I found this site. 20 minutes ago I had no Idea I would be gardening this summer but now I am. Plus if i build one good enough, my friends said they would by it off me for their controversial growing plants. I'm just growing regular plants. Keep up the good work!

Because big business has clogged up the internet with so much of their crap that I don't even bother to serf anymore. 

I am fixing to buy a hydroponic system and I have a question about two systems I am in between. Eve's Garden 6, or the Waterfarm 6. I was thinking about the waterfarm because I wanted to separate three on one side (under 24 Hr. light) and the other three under in the other side of my cabinets (under 12/12 light). Could you help me with my problems? If you could send me your answer to

i don't get it, yet...

i am new to this site and i have a question: first of all, please don't mind my bad english. i am from holland, you know. if i build, let's say the 11 bottle hydroponic system, and i turn on the pump and fill the system with water/nutrients, then what happens? does the water drain off just like an ebb & flow system, or does the waterlevel drop because the plants absorb it? i can imagine the water running back through the pump after it is switshed off. anybody! please answer my question! if i can figure out how this thing exactly works, i might even try to build this system myself. greetings, reynold

what nutrience would i use for a hydroponic system that is found in a house or normal store

I'm in the process of setting up a hydroponic system, I am going with a 400hps & 400mh I am in now in search of ideas for a sun circle. I have found them but not cheap, HELP.

Here is my first mover I built 15 years ago and it still works. Made from a barbeque rotisserie motor and a 90 degree gear reducer that weighs about 30 pounds. The light is connected to a ball barring made from a bicycle axel. The light cord is connected to a wall causing the light to rotate as the mover goes around and around. This set up will only work with one light because with two the cords would get tangled. 

Here's an easy passive hydroponic system that I gave a try. Not meant for Hydro but I said what the hell. Very low maintenance too. Any way, I filled one of those terra cotta "self watering" planters with just grow rocks, started a plant in rockwool, then transplanted the cube and plant in the grow rocks. All I've been doing is filling the outer part with nutrients whenever it got really low. I found some cool painted ones at Home Depot, not the usual orange terra cotta. It's a small plant tho (Syrian Rue), but I have since bought 2 more store plants, rinsed them of as much dirt as possible, and stuck them in. They are both about 9-12 inches, and have started growing new leaves this spring already. The only planters I've seen like these are small, so only small plants would work, great for house plants tho, and beginners. Wonder if larger plants would work as well, if I could find or make a larger one? Maybe this will interest any newbies that want an intro with using nutrient solutions with low light plants. Inexpensive, no hydroponic pumps or special lighting, atleast so far. Mark.

Im gonna bulid the 11 pipe hydroponic system. Im a new grower so i dont know much What the hell is a solo cup, I know it goes inside of the 2 litter bottle thats all. And what do you use to grow, I mean, What do you put inside of the 2 litter bottles, soil just water, rockwool, ect. Another thing is the pump. What is its specific name so i can ask for it in a store and were do i get it?

A solo cup is just a plastic drinking cup sold everywhere. 
The cup are used to hold the grow rocks. (a man made clay fired ceramic material.)
The pump used are called submersible pumps. They are rated GPH (gallon per hour) and you need one around 100 GPH.

I have just transplanted some young tomato plants into a hydroponic system. The ends of the leaves are starting to turn brown. Any suggestions?

Mike Tesnohlidek

May be to high of a solution mix. That will turn leaves brown. 

What would you use for a nutrient solution in the 11 plant hydroponic system displayed on this site? Also I would like to thank the maker and members of this site it has been a big help with my project for school.

Any nutrient solution formulated for hydroponics will work fine.

does n e one know about how much it would cost to make the 11 plant hydroponic system? And were i could pick up a pump and a timer? your info will be greatly appreciated!


i am making the 11 plant hydroponic system and i was wondering how should i fasten the pvc piping down to the nutrient container? thanx for your responoses!!

why? You growing in a hurricane. You can use bungee cords to hold the sucker down or if you need a more permanent way use elastic ties. Just ask the cops for some the next time you are busted. They use them for hand cuffs.   

can you skip from vegging to blooming in a hydroponic system??

I am building an enclosed hydroponic system and am trying to anticipate whether it will work. I bought an extra large rubbermaid storage bin for $16.99 at my local Home Base store. I placed some plastic rectangular cubes inside and have set some pots with growing cherry tomato plants in gro rocks on the cubes. The tomatoe plants are long enough that the tops stick out of some cutouts that I made along the edge of the lid. This way I can take the lid on and off without lifting the plants. The pump, tubing and spray nozzles are all inside the storage bin. The spray nozzles are low pressure 180 degree nozzles designed for drip irrigation systems but they seem to work well enough to cover the grow rocks inside the baskets. The plastic bin holds about 15gal of water and the pump turns on for 30 min and off for 30 min during the day and off all night. Do you think I might have since the roots and about 18 inches of plant stem are always inside the storage bin?

I am a 11th grader in high school and I am considering doing a science project on the success of different hydroponic nutrient solutions on hydroponically grown plants. is this at all possible? how much would it cost to set up a functioning hydroponic system?

hi ron,
what is the best method to control or to remove the problem of damping off in a hydroponic system ?
im using sponge as a medium.
Oh Chin Singapore

About the CO2 trick .... read once that rabbit pooh gives out good level of CO2 too .... maybe have some rabbit under your growing frame. feed them with lettuce from your hydroponic system and they will give you good amount of pooh for CO2.

Can I have an hydroponic system completely outside using the 11 plant design. I do not know if I can put it straight light sun or I need any kind of shade.

Yes you can grow outside and it depends on the kind of plant you want to grow if it needs shading or not.

Greetings from Spain.

Where can I find free hydroponic system plans in internet ?

What about using halogen lamp as an artificial grow light source ?

Thanks in advance.

Wrong light spectrum from a halogen.

yea i built the 11 plant hydroponic system what do i put in the containers i heard you have to put in rockwool or perlite and vermiculite but i dont know what they are?

Then you probably won't know what grow rocks are. What I recommend you use.  

Hi Ron, About a week ago I built a 11 plant garden and when everything was going well. Until a couple days ago. I bought a timer from Wal-mart that is set up to water for 15 min on and 45 min off it was only $9. Every hour. Is that too much water for small plant? 

No That sounds just right for small plants.

Also I can not find a place that sells hydroponic nutrients. Does Wal-mart sell it or maybe  I just can not find it?

No they don't. You can find hydroponics nutrient solution on the web. Use your favorite search engine to find some.  

I tested the ph today and it was above 7. Is this the reason the leaves are a little brown or is it too much water?

Yes to high of pH.

 I have been using a nutrient that is made for soil because I can not find another one. Is that the reason why they are browning? 

Yes you are cooking them.

The ph was fine when I transplanted them to the hydroponic system, and five days later it was over 7. How often do you have to adjust the ph? 

As often as necessary.

and what changes the ph so fast? 

From using non-hydropnic nutrient solution.

I appreciate all the help you have given me, the site is very interesting. Thanks.

what is TDS and what does it mean please help

The concentration of nutrients in water is measured on a numerical scale of parts per million (PPM). This number basically tells you how much fertilizer is dissolved in your water. By closely monitoring this concentration you can maintain the best level of nutrients to meet your crop's requirements. You will need a TDS (total dissolved solids) meter that measures PPM. You also use the this meter to gauge when it's time to fill your hydroponic system with a fresh mix. Generally, young plants prefer concentrations around 400 to 600 PPM, while mid-growth would be around 700 to 1000, and established or fast-growing plants need levels around 1100 to 1500.

dear ron,

wonder if you can help me out with this hydroponic problem.

you see, i tried my hand on pokchoy (oriental brassica) and the result was below expectation.

first, the stalk is smaller than organically grown second, the pokchoy in hydroponics wilt faster than expected after harvest.

however, the leaf size is ok, very green and no holes. no leaf miner. the root length is nice. long enough with lots of rootlets along the side.

could my problem originated from sunlight. i place my hydroponic system in a east-west orientation with opaque plastic on top of it to prevent rain water getting into the system.

or could it be temperature. my temperature ranges from 24C to 32C (yes, tropical Philippines I am from)

regarding the water stress, is it normal with hydroponic plants ? is water stress the main reason why after harvest, it wilts faster than expected ?


Stanley Ho

I am looking for a complete hydroponic system for growing fodder for livestock consumption. Does anyone know where I can find such a system?

how often do you feed plants in a hydroponic long should the pump be on and off in a flood and drain system.

Can I cultivate honeydew melon by hydroponic system.I have lot of land and growing honydew melon. So kindly advice me as above system. Thanking you Sir Yours sincerly Moammed Nabi Khan S-1/181 Saudabad Malir Karachi-75080 Sind Pakistan

I am currently planning to build a hydroponic system, if anyone is interested email me at

what is the simplest hydroponic system?

my name is Casanova and I'm asking who can make my own hydroponic system by buying the products at a hardware store. can you help me . I need to know what are the supplies I need. thank you.

Is it good to cultivate Lettuce in Aeroponic or Hydroponic system , which is the best? Ibrahim Ali


looking at buying a Cropking 4 bay hydroponic system would like to know if anyone knows anything about Cropking and there systems please E-mail me at thanks

Question: I would like to get started on a beginner's scale with hydroponics in our hobby greenhouse that is 10 by 48. Do you have any suggestions where I could get a setup that would get me started? Mike S

i need to know how to/when to feed my homemade hydroponic system

How do you remove plants that are root bound from an NFT hydroponic system without damage to the plants that are left?

On the 11 plant hydroponic system can you please tell me what kind of pump is in the design. I am setting the system for a science fair project. Thank you for your help!!!!! -christa

Ron, you have a very informative sight on practical applications for building a inexpensive hydroponic system, keep up the good work. My question is what other house plants can be grown in a manner similar to the spider plant and ivy. Any info that you can share I would truly appreciate.

Thanks, JC

absolutely. houseplants grow so well that plants like the aloe-vera plant fall out off the cups because they grow so much.

i want to setup a hydroponic system. i looked at the 11 plant design. what do i do after i build this? how do i start it up? seeds? nutrients? any help for this aspiring farmer would be appreciated.

you need to read previous Q & A pages to find out. 

hi my nane is james i'm in the 10th grade could you please tell me how to build the watch it grow hydroponic system

yea i built the 11 plant hydroponic system and im going to get a pump right and ive seen pics of a tube coming out of a container does that connect to the 1/2 inch hose connecter does that bring water up back to flow or is that to give to oxygen to the roots ,sorry but im new to this

Yes it pumps water up to the system.

how long before u can add seedlings to hydroponic system...and long before i can put them under a 600w hps full spectrum light

Rick: I was not able to add this before in response to your posting on ppm and percent fertilizer, but here is some more: you can guesstimate that 1 mMHO is somewhere in the range of 635 to 650 ppm. I consider this only an approximate value since it really deppends on many factors such as salt index of the particular fertilizer salt, the temperature at which the reading is taken, etc.Anyway, 640ppm for each mMHO is more or less OK for calculating a nutrient formula.

Ron, would you have any infro on growing pototoes using a hydroponic system.thanking you in advance.jim at plantdr@gate.met

Hi Ron, I am considering designing and building a larger hydroponic system for tomatoes. I plan to change the nutrient solution every 2-4 weeks, as recommended. Can you give me a rule of thumb for how much nutrient solution is required per plant (gal./plant) so that I don't waste nutrient or the nutrient doesn't become too weak before the next change. I hope to have my system up and running this spring.
Thanks a bunch.

I just transplanted a Grand Nane banana plant (1 ft.tall) to my 5 gal. constant drip hydroponic system, Im using a 8" net pot with 4" rockwool and grow rocks and was wondering if this size is big enough and if the holes in the net pot are also big enough for the roots to get through? can anybody tell me a good nutrient recipe for this system and plant? I also heard that epsom salts was not good for banana plants, is this true?......Thanks, Bob

how do you make a hydroponic system using a rubbermaid container?

I am looking for a manufacturer who produces a 1/2 inch rubber (bulkhead) grommet seal to insert a plastic barb fitting into a plastic water container. I am trying to make a dutch bucket hydroponic system and need this grommet for the nutrient flow lines. Larry

Try they have a good selections of bulkheads.

Hi I am a sixth grade student in Palm Beach, Florida. I am doing a science project with hydroponics. Do you have any advise?


Ron, I hope you don't mind me giving tips here, I dont want to interfere with your professional and experience knowledge, which, I might add, is much more than I have myself. However, after reading the messages, so many have asked how to strike seeds and when to transfer them to the hydroponics so I thought, with the little, but successful knowledge I have striking seeds, here is a tip or 2.

I have 1250 commercial parsley plants. Parsley, is one of the most challenging seeds to strike due to its slowness and less vigorous characteristics compared to other plants.

I have successfully sown about 2000 parsley seeds using the following technique (these plants then go into a NFT commercial set up)

I use vermiculite only I fill the tubes with vermiculite (the tubes I use, are the ones that then go straight into the system later, so there is no transplanting shock to the plant and much less labor for me).

I then water the tubes to add as much moisture as I can to each tube

I then plant about 6 parsley seeds to each tube. I add about 6 as parsley seed is very small and difficult to handle individually and it gives me more success with striking as if 5 do not strike, I still have 1 which will strike.

I cover the seeds with about a cm of vermiculite and water in with a very fine spray

For the first 2 days, wait till late afternoon to water as then, the sun here is Australia has warmed up the water in the hose and water the seeds with the warm water.

After day 2, water once a day, at any time but prefer afternoon, when the water is not as cold.

After 10 days, my seeds sprout and I continue watering daily, and also foliar spray with a very weak nutrient, after 3 leaves are evident.

Prick out all but the 2 strongest seedlings.

When the roots appear from the bottom of the tube, transer it to the hydroponic system and watch them grow before your eyes, so to speak.

Prick out the weakest of the 2 seedlings but note here with parsley as a particular plant:

we have found that parsley is happier with competition from other plants. With competion from other plants it produces longer stems which is what we want to achieve to harvest it commercially. So, sometimes, I will leave 2 or 3 seedlings in the one pot, however this is speaking from a commmercially viable unit only.

Note that I use a commercial seedling table - the table is simply a table with a drainage point to allow all excess water to flow through.

Parsley has a reputation of taking about 30 days to germinate but I germinate mine in about 10 days, 15 days in the middle of winter which is still an excellent result.

I am new to this hydroponic system. I built your 16 plant one, Mr. Ron.

Of course I had leaks all over the place but my observations were.

You need to save that seal that is in the bottle caps and cut a hole in it and put in back in the cap. Or go buy rubber washers at the hardware store.

I was expecting the water to completely drain from the system. However it did not. It wont hurt the root systems to be under water? Does the water stay there till the plants use it up? Have I done something wrong?

The garden will stay full until the pump shuts off. Then the water drains back through the pump to the container.

How long do I run the pump?

Until the plant roots are soaked then drain immediately.

How many minutes an hour do i do this?

3 times an hour

\ The overflow worked well. I am not sure what to expect.

I am growing in an hydroponic system. About a week ago, I noticed small brown spots started appearing on the margins of older leaves. Now it seems to be spreading to the younger ones as well. Can anyone help? TIA


The timer turns the pump on. The pump sitting in the nutrient solution reservoir pumps the solution up the hose to the garden to supply the plant roots with food. The plant roots will use as much nutrient as it needs and the rest is returned back to the reservoir for the next feeding. Determined by your timer setting. About every 15 minutes. The overflow pipe keeps the water from rising to high in the cups. This is the ebb and flow or flood and drain hydroponic system.   

I am a first time grower. I want to know what the best timing schedule for an indoor hydroponic system would be. I have a 460 watt bulb.

It depends on what medium you use. Grow rocks hold a lot of oxygen so you can water every 1/2 hour. Rockwool holds moisture more so you can water less maybe every hour. And it also depends on the size of your plants. Small plants don't need to be watered as often as larger plants. You might be a last time grower after that answer.

I'm in the process of setting up a hydroponic system, I am going with a 400hps & 400mh I am in now in search of ideas for a sun circle. I have found them but not cheap, HELP.

Here is my first mover I built 15 years ago and it still works. Made from a barbeque rotisserie motor and a 90 degree gear reducer that weighs about 30 pounds. The light is connected to a ball barring made from a bicycle axel. The light cord is connected to a wall causing the light to rotate as the mover goes around and around. This set up will only work with one light because with two the cords would get tangled. 

Hi im building my own hydroponic system{11 plants} using the instructions you provide using pvc and my question was. How do i plant the seeds? we have everything ready and working but if we put a seed in there it just goes into the system. So what do we use to keep that seed in bottle with out it going into the system?

dear Ron,
i am having difficulty in getting nutrient for hydroponic system from where i am. furthermore, i cant find any chemist who will do the formulation for me nor guranty that the nutrient mix is correct.
right now, i am using 30-10-10 for my veggie. the content are as follow :
N ... 30% P2O3 ... 10% K2O ... 10% Magnesium ... 0.120% iron ... 0.040% manganese ... 0.020% boron ... 0.015% copper ... 0.007% zinc ... 0.005% molybdenum ... 0.002% calcium ... 0.090% vitamin B1 ... 0.075%
will this water soluble fertilizer work in hydroponic system ?

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