There are different ways on how people can cultivate marijuana plants. So if you are still undecided what method you will use, it is best that you familiarize yourself with your options in order to make the right pick. Remember that the yields that you can produce will depend on the method that you will use which means you really have to think of your decision over and over again. In this post, we are going to discuss growing marijuana in aeroponics method.
What Is an Aeroponic System in Growing Marijuana? How Does it Work?
You may ask.
Aeroponic system is a method of growing marijuana and any plant wherein the roots are exposed in an enclosed growing area while the leaves, as well as the crown, are growing on top. This method allows your marijuana plants to grow faster and produce higher crops. You will need to suspend the plants in the air by using a support structure with the root system hanging below. Nutrients will be sprayed on the plants for them to reach maximum growth. Microbes that can be found on the roots will continue to develop and will benefit the plants. You have to provide your plants with water to prevent them from drying so you have to come up with your own schedule of watering them. With the enclosed environment, marijuana plants will have a continuous supply of oxygen and protected from root diseases. You can also keep your plants away from the light so there would be no formation of algae.
Reasons of Choosing Aeroponics over Other Growing Systems
Marijuana plants will have a time-controlled and enclosed environment if you will think of growing them through the aeroponic system. Growers can expect the following benefits.
- There would be lesser evaporation of water, waste water, and reduce the chances for your plants to get sick.
- You can provide your marijuana with sufficient amount of nutrients through controlled misting. The roots will absorb the nutrients thus helping them to produce a higher amount of yields.
- Marijuana plants can grow faster that saves you time and effort.
- Growing aeroponically can provide flexibility because you can change the nutrients anytime. You can also relocate the plants easier because they are lightweight.
- The aeroponic method can save you space, water, and cost while providing you maximum yields from your marijuana cultivation.
How to Build Your Own Aeroponic System
Using aeroponic system doesn’t mean that you will have to spend much. In fact, you can already make one at home as long as you know the things that you will need. So if you are interested in making your own aeroponic system, then here are the important things that you should prepare.
The reservoir is an essential in an aeroponic system because it is where the nutrient-rich water will be placed. It should be a tight container and preferably dark in color. The reservoir can be found on your plants to capture the water after the misting process and will restore it for their growth. It can help your plants grow well with the foods that you feed them.
The piping will be responsible for carrying the water. You can make use of a PVC pipe that it widely available in different home improvement store. It will be connected to the reservoir tank that will hold the spray heads required in running the system.
This is considered as an essential part of an aeroponic system. You can decide using a pre-constructed pump that you will just twist and adjust according to the feeding schedule of your marijuana plants. This can keep you away from the hassles of growing marijuana while saving your plants from dying.
How to Start Growing Marijuana with An Aeroponic System
Once you have prepared the system, the next thing that you have to do is to start cultivating your weeds. This can be far different with the usual way of growing marijuana wherein growers make use of soil. Instead of putting it directly into the soil, you will also hang the plants where you will provide them with their needs like water and nutrients. To help you get maximum results from your marijuana plants you have to be aware of these basic steps on how to get started.
Step 1 – What kind of Aeroponic system you will use?
When choosing what aeroponic to use for your cannabis, you have to consider the space you have as well as the money that you can spend for the system. If you are opting for a cheap system, then DIY aeroponics can be your best option. This system will not have a separate reservoir. Once the roots of your plants will reach the bottom part, they will be exposed to the nutrient solution. However, you don’t have to worry about the effects of the nutrients to the plants because it is oxygenated.
Another system that you can try is the Aerogarden that has its CFC light. Users of the Aerogarden recommend the use of supplemental grow lighting. For those who want a professional growing system, you might be interested using the General Hydroponics Aeroflo2 system that can hold 18 to 60 plants. You will have to spray the nutrient solution and run 24 hours a day and 7 days a week.
Step 2 – Choosing for the grow lights that will suit your plants
If you were to choose what lights you will use for your plants, you have to give enough attention to the heat that it can produce. You have to prevent the water from your aeroponic system to get warm. You can use a chiller unit in cooling off the reservoir. It would be better that you go for CFL or LED lights for the system. This will reduce the negative effects that high temperature can cause to your plants.
Step 3 – What nutrients to use and how you should feed it to your plants
When it comes to nutrients, you can either choose organic or synthetic chemicals. You can also combine the two as long as you know the exact amount that you will feed your plants. You can get suggestions from aeroponic growers what nutrients to use. It is also advisable that you use ¼ of the amount of nutrient that manufacturer recommends for your plants. You have to monitor your plants to see if there is any sign of toxicity. You have to adjust the amount of nutrient little by little to make it easier for the plants to handle it. Make sure that you feed your plants with macronutrients and micronutrients.
Microbes are also beneficial to plants to create healthy roots. They are the ones who process the nutrients for the roots to absorb. In this case, when providing your marijuana with any kind of solution, you have to check if it can harm the microbes.
You have to be patient when making adjustments with the amount of nutrients for your plants. It is best that you start with small amounts to prevent damaging the plants. You can use EC meter or TDS meter in measuring the strength of the nutrients. Once the evaporation of water in your system gets high, you also have to increase the density of the nutrients for your plants. It is necessary that you know how to stop the water from evaporating.
Step 4 – How to water your plants
When watering your plants, there are important reminders that you have to keep in mind. You should know the pH of the water, the temperature, and the schedule of changing your water from the system. You can start using distilled or filtered water for your aeroponic system. Fill the reservoir with water and allow it to sit for 24 hours or more. It is also a good idea if you have an extra reservoir so that you’ll have the water anytime.
You have to prevent the light from entering the water because it can cause the formation of algae. The algae can block the system and will use up the nutrients. As a result, your marijuana cannot grow well because they cannot get enough nutrients.
Monitoring the temperature of the plants is required and should be from 18 to 24 degrees Celsius. If you find that the temperature of the water is low, you can adjust it by using an inexpensive water heater. On the other hand, if the water temperature is too high, you can consider identifying the cause before you think of buying an expensive water chiller. You can check the lighting system, the circulation of air, or the air temperature.
Step 5 – Air circulation
Growers should maintain the most favorable room temperature for their marijuana plants which is 21 degrees Celsius. You can use exhaust fans to improve air circulation and get enough CO2 that your plants need. In order to strengthen the stems, using oscillating fans can be of a great help. This will also keep the molds and pests away from your plants.
Step 6 – Enjoy growing your marijuana plants
Once you have prepared all your plants’ need for growing, you have to check the area if it is clean. This is essential for your plants growth and if you want to get successful results. You also need to provide support to your plants before you place them in the grow room knowing the fact that you will suspend the roots in the air.
The Perks That You Can Get from Growing Marijuana through Aeroponics
There are indeed various options on how you can cultivate your marijuana plants. But before you make a choice, you have to weigh the benefits that you can get from each method. You also have to consider your skills and your budget because not all methods are easy to understand and affordable.
For experienced marijuana growers, growing marijuana using aeroponics can be ideal. So if you are interested in growing marijuana using this method, here are just a few of the benefits that you can get.
- You don’t have to use any kind of medium because the plants will be suspended in air. It only means that you don’t have to spend money buying a medium and there is nothing to distribute and dispose of. This can alleviate the issue in contaminating your plants.
- You can be able to reuse your growing containers several times. Knowing that you spray the nutrient to the plants, you can prevent spills, thus reducing waste.
- You can make use of containers in various sizes as long as it can hold on the plants. Just make sure that the containers have the body and the cover.
- Growers can control the development of their marijuana plants. They can decide on the time of feeding their plants.
- You can prevent the hassles of flushing your plants because there is no medium and you can feed your plants with the exact amount of nutrients they need. This will result in better yields compared to other methods of growing marijuana.
- You can minimize the stress that your plants may acquire.
- You can keep your plants away from the risks that can be caused by pests and diseases. If you are bothered by flying pests, predatory wasps can be of a great help.
- Aeroponic growing eliminates disposal cost. Root systems can be used as compost while the stems and the stalks can be sold to companies that produce hemp products. You can co consider this as an added income.
Factors that Can Affect Your Plants Growth When Using Aeroponics
Getting successful crops from your marijuana plants is possible if you are aware of the things that can affect their growth. So if you are using aeroponics, here are some of the things that you have to give enough attention because they can influence the way your plants develop.
One of the crucial parts in growing marijuana through aeroponics is the pH level. It is because you are feeding your plants using a fine mist that should be available for them to absorb. You have to maintain the pH from 5.8 to 6.2. Growers should regularly check the pH for them to identify if it is okay for the plants. You don’t have to adjust the pH if not necessary.
When using aeroponics, it is important that you provide your marijuana plants with the right nutrients. As much as possible, avoid using nutrients that can leave lots of salt residue because it can clog the spray or the pump. The worst scenario is that it might lead to a nutrient lockout. It is recommended that you use a good nutrient that will allow you manage on what you feed your plants.
Knowing that the pump will continuously run, you will need to monitor the temperature of the nutrient solution.
Common Problems When Using Aeroponic System to Grow Marijuana
Here are some common problems in using an Aeroponic system in growing marijuana that you need to consider.
The pump is an important part of the aeroponic system. If it stops, then there would be a quick drop in the humidity level making it unable to provide the plants with the nutrients they need. You have to look for quality types of equipment for your aeroponic system in order to have the assurance of its continuous operation. Regular maintenance for the system is also required.
Evaporation of Water
Water will evaporate if the res temp is too high and if you failed to seal the system well. If there would be too much water evaporation, the effects of the nutrients to the plants will become stronger causing damages to the plants and their roots. In order to prevent this problem, you have to close and secure all holes to stop water from escaping.
Growth of Bacteria
This occurs because of a light leak or if there is a high res temp. You should clean everything that you use in the system as well as the res every time you change the nutrient.
You will encounter this problem if the solution is not adequately aerated. This is when you can think of using an air pump and air stone. The falling mist and the pump can help in keeping the nutrient solution oxygenated.
This is one of the usual problems when using aeroponics for your marijuana plants. The good thing is that it is easy for you to fix the problem in a cheap way. You can buy a filter or you can cut a PVC and faucet screens to create one. You can also change the kind of nutrients that you feed your plants because there might be undissolved salt residue that blocks the spray.
Useful Tips on How You Can Improve the Yields of Marijuana Using Aeroponics
Every grower would want to have excellent results from their cannabis. Yet, it will really require your time, effort, and money if you want the best from your marijuana plants. Before you decide in growing marijuana using aeroponics, it is necessary that you are aware of various ways that can help you boost up the yields of your plants. Here are some tips that can help you make the most out of aeroponic growing.
- You have to assure that CO2 is well-circulated in the grow room in order for marijuana plants to grow well and faster.
- The growing area must be rich in oxygen so that the microbes can easily digest the nutrients for the plants use. Microbes are responsible for preparing the nutrients for the plant’s circulatory system. The oxygen also allows the roots to grow bigger that will result in higher yields.
- You have to prevent the plants from drying so you need to check if all of the plants receive enough water. Learn how you can be able to minimize the evaporation of water in your aeroponic system.
- You have to prevent light from entering to stop the growth of bacteria that can damage your marijuana plants. Aside from that, roots prefer to grow in an environment with total darkness, and because the roots have an effect with on yields that you can create, therefore, it is essential that you prevent the entrance of light.
Growing marijuana in aeroponics can be rewarding if done correctly. Please leave a comment below, if you have any questions or anything. You can also use our contact form and we will get back to you as soon as I can.
You can also check this growing marijuana ebook if you want to learn everything about growing marijuana.