How to Measure Plant Growth in 3 Easy Ways

Are you one of the countless others who are trying to learn how to measure plant growth? If you are, then you’ll be glad to know that this procedure is anything but complicated. It doesn’t matter if you’re trying to calculate the growth rate of your laboratory specimens or if you simply want to know how fast your greenhouse plants are growing – you’ll be able to do this with great ease.

 

3 Methods You Can Use to Measure Your Plant’s Growth Rate

It’s important to note that you’ll need a bit of time to track the growth rate of your tender plants, you’ll also need to make use of a few supplies. Here’s a closer look at what you need to do:

 

Method #1: Measure your plant’s height with a ruler

The first method involves the use of a ruler in order to measure the height of your plant. To do this, you need to set your ruler at the plant base while making sure that you begin measuring at zero on the bottom. For measuring the height of plants in a pot, you need to set the ruler at ground level. While a ruler could work for smaller plants, you may need to use a meter stick, a yardstick, or a measuring tape for taller plants.

After measuring the plant’s height from the base to the highest point, make sure that you record the plant’s height on your chart. Don’t forget to write the date of the recording. It’s best to repeat this process every three days to keep track of your plant’s progress.

The next step is to calculate your plant’s average growth rate. You can easily do this by taking your plant’s measurements and dividing them by the amount of time that you’ve been growing them.  Although you’ll get a general idea of how quickly your plant grows within a set amount of time, keep in mind that your plant’s growth rate can vary on a daily basis.

As of today, it would be impossible to predict a particular plant’s exact daily growth rate without the use of a laboratory, as well as cutting-edge technology.

 

Method #2: Keep an eye out for the leaf size

You can also measure your plant’s growth by judging leaf size by creating a chart, counting the leaves on the plant, and marking their length, as well as their width. When you’re creating a chart, be sure to have rows for each of the dates that you plan to measure your leaves. Make sure to have a column that’s labeled “number of leaves”, and another one that says, “average length”, and one more that says, “average width.”

Don’t forget to check your leaves and record the data every three days. As you’re counting the number of leaves on your plant, be sure to do it thoroughly and avoid counting the same leaves twice. Count the number of newly-sprouted leaf tips and record them on your chart as well.

When it comes to marking the length and width of your plant’s leaf size, you’ll need to take a random sampling of at least 4 leaves. Next, you’ll need to grab a ruler to measure each leaf from its base to its tip, as well as its widest parts. Once you’ve recorded the specific measurements in centimeters and millimeters, you add them up and you divide the total amount by the number of measurements that were taken in order to get that day’s average leaf length and width.

 

Method #3: Use dried plants to get the growth rate

For this method, you’ll need to select a random plant and remove it from its pot and carefully rinse off the soil from the plant’s roots before you use a paper towel to pat the plant dry. Next, you place your plant in a drying oven and you set the temperature to 60˚F C or 140˚F. To make sure that the plant gets completely dried out, you need to heat them for about 8 to 12 hours.

In the absence of a drying oven, a food dehydrator could work if you just set it at the same temperature. If you only have a conventional oven at your disposal, you may use the convection setting and set it at about 140˚F for approximately 6 hours.

Once you’re done drying your plant, you need to place it in a plastic zip bag to protect it from moisture as it cools down. Keep the leaves that fall off during the cooling phase and place them on the scale along with the rest of your plant as you weigh it. Record the data and dispose of the dried-up plant.

This process may be repeated after a week or two for comparison. Once your measurements are complete, you need to get the average change in weight by adding up the recorded data and dividing it by the number of days between each measurement taken.

 

Is Greenhouse Gardening a Great Idea?

Yes, greenhouse gardening is one of the best experiences you could ever have. Aside from allowing you to tend to your plant babies regardless of the weather outside, a mini greenhouse also acts as a protective barrier against harsh weather conditions, destructive pests, and harmful animals. What’s more, having your own mini greenhouse will also make it easier for you to control the temperature and humidity levels inside the enclosed space, allowing you to provide an ideal growing environment for your plants.

 

How to Measure Plant Growth: The Bottom Line

While knowing how to measure plant growth is great, what’s even more awesome is to experience the wonderful benefits of greenhouse gardening. Invest in a mini greenhouse today!

 

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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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