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How To Keep Hydroponic Basil Alive

Herbs are considered useful. With their larger role in the kitchen, it’s good to know some tips, like how to keep hydroponic basil alive.

This may sound hard to achieve. What most people don’t know, though, is that there is a way for these minty herbs to stay fresh out of the garden. Ideally, certain conditions have to be met.

 

Basil: A Closer Look

Coming from the family Lamiaceae (mints), basil is widely used in the culinary world. There are many uses for this tender plant, the most common of which is flavoring. Specifically, fresh basil is added to the cooked dish just before serving.

 

What is hydroponic basil?

This is just like your typical basil, minus one component: it is grown without the need for soil. What you need to consider first is what type of basil would be suited for germinating. It takes about 3 to 10 days to do so and a temperature of 75 degrees.

 

How to Keep Hydroponic Basil Alive: What You Need to Know

Modern gardening practices these days dictate that these herbs should be kept fresh for more practical use. Luckily, any basil variety will thrive in a hydroponic setting, given the right attention to detail.

 

Light Conditions

Preferably, you should expose your hydroponic basil to about 14 to 16 hours of sunlight per day for the most productive results. Large LED grow lights will do just fine, or you could use T5 fluorescent lighting. At the very least, give it 10 hours a day.

 

Nutrient Levels

A balanced ratio of potassium and calcium (1:1 ratio) must be well-maintained to release the basil leaves and branches’ oil and flavor. Nitrogen also adds to its ability to yield leaves. Make sure to keep its levels at a constant at all times.

Apart from this, magnesium must be at least at a level of 50 ppm. Remember that this is responsible for the overall flavor and aroma of the plant.

 

pH Recommendation

Hydroponic basil can grow in a pH as low as 5.5 but will produce best within a pH range of 6.5 to 6.8. It’s also important to use straight water (pH balanced is ideal) for the first few days after germination or just until the emergence of embryonic leaves.

 

Temperature Range

Hydroponic basil grows best in day temperatures ranging from 70-80°F. Also, basil needs a warm environment protected from drafts, so night temperatures mustn’t go lower than 65°F.

When grown indoors, especially in a small room, airflow should still be maintained to ward off fungi and facilitate the evaporation of excess water from the plants in a process otherwise known as transpiration.

 

Pruning and Regular Manicuring

Remove any broken stems and old growth (including dying leaves). Show care in doing so and use sheers (don’t just simply pull them out) as you might accidentally pull off a whole stem.

 

Spacing Requirement

Basil is generally considered a stem-y plant, meaning they can grow close together without necessarily crowding. This means you can have an average spacing of about 6 inches between each plant to ensure proper airflow is still maintained.

However, if you have a bigger area for planting your basil, you could place them 9 to 12 inches apart for a more spread out and lateral growth pattern. This will guarantee an increased yield as well.

 

Humidity Factor

Basil leaves are prone to absorbing moisture, which is how to keep hydroponic basil alive. For this reason, be sure to avoid long periods of high humidity. Otherwise, this could lead to calcium deficiency. In a hydroponic scenario, keep humidity levels within 60-65%.

 

The Key Benefits of Greenhouse Gardening

Did you know that if you decide to grow your plants inside any type of greenhouse (hobby, mini, or semi pro), you’re setting yourself up for the best gardening experience? Whether you’re a novice or a seasoned greens aficionado, you might want to take a closer look at the key benefits of having your own greenhouse:

 

The growing season is extended

Since your greenhouse provides your plants with an enclosed environment, the climate inside the structure is more controlled compared to the climate outdoors. For this reason, your greenhouse plants will have more advantage over outdoor plants because they won’t be exposed to swinging temperatures.

What’s more, you’ll be able to plant weeks or months longer than what is normally possible! This means that with greenhouse gardening, you can expect a year-round harvest!

 

You can keep the bad bugs out and the good bugs in

Your greenhouse protects your plants from the attacks of destructive pests such as cabbage maggots, caterpillars, cutworks, flea beetles, and other predators. Unlike traditional outdoor gardeners who are constantly on the lookout for squirrels, moles, deer, and raccoons, you can rest easy knowing that your greenhouse also acts as an effective barrier against these unwanted creatures.

While your greenhouse keeps the population of nuisance insects under your control, it also allows you to contain beneficial insects such as ladybugs and praying mantises that help fight the destructive bugs that have managed to sneak into your greenhouse. These beneficial insects also work to help your plants thrive well.

 

Conclusion

Now that you know how to keep hydroponic basil alive, perhaps you might want to try your hand at greenhouse gardening. You won’t be disappointed with the results!

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How To Prevent Root Rot In Hydroponics: 3 Useful Tips

If you’re a newbie gardener who’s looking to find ways to hone your skills, you’d want to learn how to prevent root rot in hydroponics even before this problem affects your plants.

Hydroponics can be advantageous to crops in more ways than one. However, it also comes with risks of diseases, such as root rot, which can be destructive or even lethal to your plants.

Unfortunately, there are no effective methods to recover the wilted parts that were affected by the root rot once it hits your plants. The only thing you can do if you do not want this catastrophe to befall your crops is to prevent it before it happens. Read on to learn more about this subject.

 

What is Root Rot?

Root rot is a disease that attacks the plant roots and causes them to suffer decay. This usually happens when a lack of oxygen supply occurs in the substrate.

To give you an idea, think about plant roots that are submerged in water that only has a little oxygen in it. Over time, the plant suffocates and dies.

Aside from rot and decay, this disease also leads to the proliferation of fungi that are naturally present in the soil. These include Rhizoctonia, Alternaria, Pythium, Botrytis, Fusarium, or Phytophthora. As soon as fungi colonies start to grow, they tend to target the weakened roots and infect your precious plant babies.

Once the plant becomes infected, they won’t be able to take in what they need to grow – water, oxygen, and other nutrients. When this happens, it won’t be long before the plant dies.

 

What is Hydroponics?

In case you’re not aware, the term hydroponic is derived from a Latin word that means “working water”. To put it simply, hydroponics is an art that involves growing various types of plants without soil. If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind when somebody talks about hydroponics would be a picture of plants with roots suspended into the water without using any type of growing medium.

 

Avoiding Root Rot in Hydroponic Systems

Detecting and identifying root rot can be tricky. When your plants get infected, their leaves and roots gradually wither until the whole crop itself dies from the lack of nutrients, which is a common symptom of many diseases.

 

What causes root rot in hydroponics?

One of the requirements in hydroponics systems is oxygen. Without it, your plants are basically on the road to death. On the other hand, lack of such is one of the major triggers for root rot, and it must be avoided at all costs.

Just like when planting in soil, you loosen up the ground so that your plants’ roots can have their required intake of oxygen. That is the case for crops grown in aqueous solutions as well. If they cannot breathe, they would not be able to grow.

Another agent for root rot is the temperature. The last thing you would want in your system are parasites that leech nutrients intended for your plants and infect the water during the process. In common terms, these fungi are called molds.

One of the best breeding grounds for these is warm and moist areas. For this reason, if the water temperature inside your reservoir is high, then you are susceptible to it. Something as minor as letting the solutions exposed to sunlight can already be a risk factor.

 

3 Useful Tips on How to prevent root rot in hydroponics

There is good news! Root rot in hydroponics can be prevented! Just follow these tips:

Tip#1: Use the right air pump

If you do not want root rot to affect your plants, you merely have to avoid its causes. If you need oxygen, keep the water bubbling by providing an air pump of appropriate size, and also give importance to proper ventilation in the room.

 

Tip #2: Maintain the temperature

The temperature should be maintained within the 70 to 80 degrees F range. Get rid of any materials that can make your system vulnerable to infections, and make sure not to disturb your crops while they are trying to grow.

 

Tip #3: Get rid of the rotten parts

However, if you failed in preventing the disease, then the rotten parts should be removed immediately. Cut them off as there is no chance of reviving them, and focus on the potential new growth instead. Fix your hydroponics system and eliminate the risks.

 

Why Give Greenhouse Gardening a Try?

Greenhouse gardening offers numerous benefits to greens aficionados who dare to take their gardening experience to the next level. Aside from acting as a shield against the effects of inclement weather, a mini, hobby, or semi-pro greenhouse can also serve as a protective layer that keeps harmful bugs and critters at bay.

What’s more, its enclosed structure allows you to control your plants’ growing conditions including the temperature, light, moisture, and ventilation of the greenhouse’s internal environment. With a controlled environment, you’ll be able to extend growing seasons and grow plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

No matter how well-informed you are about how to prevent root rot in hydroponics, you cannot completely eradicate the risks. Therefore, to avoid the worst-case scenario, you should be prepared to sacrifice the infected for the sake of others. While you’re at it, consider trying your hand at greenhouse gardening as well.

 

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