Do It Yourself Aerogarden System
This system was made for 53$ all with products ordered online.
This design was made by Shlok Vaidya. The original article and links to the products used can be viewed here http://miiu.org/wiki/DIY_Aeroponics_System . This design is very innovative and use of this design on this website was authorized by my friend and designer of this system Shlok Vaidya.
Discouraged by the high prices related to buying a manufactured pre built aerogarden system, I constructed my own unique version of a few different Do It Yourself models illustrated online.
A Do It Yourself aerogarden system has to be affordable, use easy to attain components, and be visually pleasing. It should also be very simple to construct and not need a lot of tools.
Further, its output should be monitored and revisions, updates and innovations must be made in an open and collective way.
DIY AeroGarden System Components
Of significance was keeping costs reasonable, while maximizing the yield of fresh, and pesticide free organic food. Here is how I did it.
* Container. 56 quart.
* Netpots. Dozen.
* Ultrasonic mister.
* Organic nutrients.
links to purchase the products used can be viewed here http://miiu.org/wiki/DIY_Aeroponics_System
Do It Yourself Aerogarden System Required Tools
* A blade. Exacto knife, box cutter, paring knife, Sufficiently sharp but controllable.
* Marker. Sharpie.
* Measuring tape.
* Drill (optional)
* File (optional)
First Steps to Building Your Own Aerogarden System
* Measure lid. I used the area inside the ridge to keep it easier. Mine was 19 x 13 inches. I wanted them close together to get directly misted, but not too close as to be problematic as the plants progress in growth cycle. On the small side, the netpots are 3 inches in and apart. On the long side, they are 3.25 inches in and apart. This is measured from the center of the 2″ pot.
* Confirm placement and draw cutting marks. This is probably easier if you have a compass.
* Cut the holes. Remember you need the pot to sit in there, with the weight of hydroton and a full grown plant. The tighter the fit, the better. I first tried a mini box cutter, but that turned out to be a useless implement, so I switched to a real box cutter and things went quickly.
* I smoothed down edges of the holes with a file, but this is not absolutely necessary.
* Weatherproof the lid. Keep the mist and nutrients in the box by weatherproofing where the lid meets the box. You will place the self adhesive weatherproofing strips against the lid or the lip, depending on how your box closes. For my clip box, I used the lip. It is still a bit tough to close, so I may trim a bit directly under the clip.
* Clean any plastic shavings that may be in the box, and fill up the bottom of the reservoir plain water. Check your mister for ideal level. Mine said 5-10 mm above the tallest point of the mister.
* Place your mister and plug it in.
Place lid and net pots. Be mindful of: peak mister placement, are all the pots being misted? Are ther any leaks? Where are you going to place wiring?
* If all is well, pour six netpots worth of hydroton into a strainer and let soak in water and rince.
* Since I am experimenting, I am sprouting seeds and placed them directly in the hydroton. You may want to start your seeds through another method, or transplant an older plant.
Note: I did not drill a hole for the wiring until after I decided where the box was going to be placed. My mister came with an inline rubber stopper. If yours did not, that is a positive add on to maintain control of the moisture.
Note 2: Before being fully functional and operating, I will have to fix the clear container issue illustrated above. Affordable solution is black spray paint, or I have a few extra square feet of thin plywood I may use to construct a tiny enclosure around the plastic container. Root box must be light free.