Are you eager to get started on aeroponics, but can not afford the hefty pricetags of pre made units. You are not alone, hundreds of indoor gardening enthusiasts are eager to get started but just simply its too expensive. That was my inspiration in creating this small guide to build your own aeroponic system. There will still be some costs involved for materials, but a small fraction compared to the huge cost of a pre made aeroponicsystem.
Getting started, what you will need.
Superior Pump 91250 1/4 HP Thermoplastic Submersible Utility Pump
Round Net Pots 3 inch, Heavy Duty – 1 Dozen
Rubbermaid 221300DIM Roughneck Storage Box
CRL Radius Window and Door Foam Seal Tape 1/2″ x 1/4″- 50 ft roll
Hydroton Leca Clay Orchid/Hydroponic Grow Media – 1 lb.
UltraGrow Liquid Nutrient Set 3 Part – Aerogarden Compatible
LED Wholesalers 2501MX Blue/Red 225 LED 13.8 Watt Square Grow Light Panel 110 Volt
Intermatic TN311C 120 Volt Heavy Duty Grounded Timer
All the above images and links are clickable to purchase items from amazon. Amazon offers online purchasing, allowing for discretion and convenience.
Prepare the lid of the tote. You will need to take the netted pot and turn it upside down and mark 6 holes on lid evenly spread. Remember you will want to cut the holes inside the line as the lip of netted pot must be little wider than hole itself to hold it in place.
To cut holes i mark the holes with a marker using the netted pot as guide. I then use a utility knife (exacto) I cut an X through middle of circle. Leaving me with 4 pie slices. I carefully cut away each piece of the pie. Stay on inside of markings. After holes cut place the netted pots in to ensure they fit make minor adjustments as needed.
Step two, drill a hole big enough for the pump plug to fit through. I use the lid for this and after pulling cord through leaving a little inside tote and outside for moving etc.. I then seal the hole using spray foam and Duct tape.
Step three, use the weather stipping foam tape and place it on tote body rim. The idea is to create a waterproof seal when lid is put on so no leaks. Cheap totes you may have to devise other methods of sealing the aeroponic system.
Step four, place pump in center of tote. When activated with water and nutrients the pump will spray water directly upwards splashing on the lid and creating a mist that will spray across entire top of tote. That is why we had to do step three to seal the unit as best as possible.
Step five, place a few hydroton rocks in netted baskets forming a base. Next place your plants in the netted pots and fill around roots with more hydroton rocks. Hydroton are made of clay and are ph neutral. Just there to help protect roots from light, and keep water from splashing out of netted pot.
Step six, place water and nutrient mix in the tote. You do not need a lot of water only 2 or 3 inches from bottom of tote is enough. The nutrient mix is important as it feeds your plant. Add water every week to two. Whenever you add water add some nutrients. Follow manufacturers directions on amount of nutrient to amount of water needed.
Step seven, set up your lighting and plug it into the timer. Remember lighting times change in different stages of growth. Traditionally you want a different light schedule for vegetative stage and flowering stage.
Step eight plug her in and watch your aeroponic system work. Make sure to check regularly.
by Chad Peterson