hydroponics-odor

How to prevent odor in Hydroponics system

Many people prefer to grow crops in hydroponic systems. Through this method, growers harvest tastier and healthier vegetables and fruits from their hydroponic gardens. However, they have to contend with bad odor in the grow rooms. The fact is that most materials used in hydroponic systems have a potent smell. Fortunately, there are some steps you can take to prevent odor in the hydroponics system.

How to prevent odor in Hydroponics system

#1. Get rid of organic materials 

Unpleasant odor results from microorganisms that feed on organic matter. In this case, you should avoid bringing unnecessary organic materials into your hydroponic system. Organic matter includes rotting root system or vegetation from previous crops. Use a fresh growing medium before next planting.

#2. Use nutrients that are purposely designed for hydroponics 

Most growers are tempted to use organic fertilizers that are used in soil-based systems. This is not advisable because such fertilizers are designed to boost microbes that help to break down organic matter in the soil. Introducing such fertilizers into hydroponics would result in unpleasant odor. In this case, you use nutrients that are specifically designed for hydroponics.

#3. Replace the nutrient solution often 

Usually, growers would want to use the nutrient solution for a long time with replacing. However, it is important to replace your nutrient solution at least once in every two weeks. Set up your system such that it is easy to open and drain the nutrient solution.

You can drain the nutrient solution and used them to nourish soil-based plants. To drain the nutrient solution, you need to add up to two gallons of pH adjusted water and run the system for about five minutes. Then add beneficial microbes and pH adjusted nutrient solution into the reservoir.

#4. Maintain a microbial equilibrium in the system 

Some microbial species produce bad odor while others are beneficial in the system. To prevent unwanted microbes, start with a clean water source that is inoculated with beneficial microbes. in this case, the beneficial microbes will get a good start, which results in a healthy system. In this case, the unwanted microbes are suppressed before any damage occurs.

#5. Maintain a well-oxygenated nutrient solution 

The nutrient solution that is rich in oxygen creates a favorable environment for beneficial microbes. This can be done by using an air pump to deliver oxygen to the nutrient solution. You can consult your hydroponic technician on the size of the pump that will suit your needs.

#6. Use carbon filters

Carbon filters are easier to install and provide the best means to remove any odor in the grow room. These filters are very efficient and require little maintenance. These filters are available in different sizes to suit any size of the grow room.

#7. Consider ozone generators 

They are not popular as carbon filters but remove odor if used properly. Ozone generators remove odor by oxidizing airborne pollutants. However, ozone can be dangerous to the health of people and plants. Improper use of ozone generator may lead to the death of your plants.

Conclusion 

Odor is the last thing every grower will like to experience on the hydroponic gardens. However, most growers don’t know how to prevent odor in Hydroponics system. The above measures will help the growers get rid of the unpleasant smell in the hydroponic systems.

ph-chart

Importance of pH level in hydroponics

What is pH? 

This is used to measure the acidity and alkalinity of an aqueous solution. pH is an acronym for potential hydrogen/hydroxyl ion in a solution. For the acidic solution, the pH ranges from 0 to 6.9 and ranges from 7.1 to 14 in alkaline solution. The pure water has pH of 7, and it is known as the neutral pH. Is pH important in hydroponics systems? For most hydroponics gardening, the pH should be in the range of 5.8 to 6.2.

Importance of pH level in hydroponics

The proper pH balance plays a vital role in ensuring the healthy growth of plants in the hydroponics system. When the pH lies in the correct range, the plants will have the capability to absorb the right nutrients for proper growth. It is important to note that some nutrients are only available at specific pH. For instance, if the pH of your hydroponic system is too low, some vital elements such as Calcium and Magnesium can become unavailable. In this case, your plants will not grow well if they lack such essential elements. Also, low pH leads to toxicity that can thwart the growth of your hydroponics plants.

On the other hand, the alkaline environment can result in the increase in macro nutrients. However, the levels of phosphorus, iron, zinc, manganese, and copper are reduced, and can negatively affect the plant growth.

In this case, the pH range of 5.8 to 6.2 makes all essential nutrients available to the hydroponic plants. Therefore, it is important to maintain proper pH. Otherwise, the plants will get stunted and result in reduced yields.

Should you measure the pH levels in your hydroponic system? 

Checking the pH level of the nutrient solution will help you maintain the proper balance in your hydroponics system. You can check the pH using liquid pH test kits, paper test strips, or digital pH meter. For liquid pH test kits and test paper strips, you will compare the color of result liquid against the standard pH color chart.

However, digital pH meter is the most accurate tool for measuring the pH levels in your hydroponics system. You just dip the electrode into your nutrient solution and the pH value will be displayed on the LCD screen.

How to adjust the pH level in your hydroponic system

Ideally, you are adding nutrients to the hydroponic system. Unlike in soil-based systems, the pH can fluctuate very fast in hydroponics because there is no buffer. In this case, you will have to do constant monitoring of the pH level to maintain the right balance.

You can use pH Down or pH Up to adjust the pH levels in your system. In this case, pH Up will raise the pH level while pH Down to use to lower the pH level. Adjustment of the pH level should be made on a regular basis to allow optimum plant growth.

Conclusion 

The pH level plays a significant role in hydroponics. Proper pH balance allows optimum absorption of nutrients by the plants in hydroponic systems. Therefore, it is imperative to check the pH levels on a regular basis and make the necessary adjustments.