- Start plants from seed
if you must, but start from cuttings if you can.
- Grow your cuttings
under florescent lights 18 hours per day until well sprouted (at
least 3/4"roots), if growing in a medium like Rapid Rooters.
Otherwise, just place your un-rooted cuttings directly into the
system and place a foam collar around them as described below.
- Fill the reservoir with
a "grow" or "vegetative" nutrient, mixed to 1000 PPM with a PH of
- Put cuttings into
Astrogrow TM system. Put collar
around the cuttings and cover with clear plastic cups. Set pump
timer to run 1 minute on 5 minutes off. Plug pump into timer.
Turn on 400W-1000W Metal Halide lamp 24" above plants for 18 hours per day.
- Remove plastic cups
after 3 days.
- Check nutrient level
daily and top off reservoir with water.
- To force blooming, after 7-14 days pump out
the vegetative nutrient (use on indoor or outdoor potted plants or
store for your next crop. Attach a garden hose to the pump out valve,
turn off the supply manifold valves and open the pump out valve.
Cycle the pump, then turn off the pump when the reservoir is empty and refill
the reservoir with "bloom" nutrient, mixed to 1900 PPM with a PH of
6-6.5. Start pump. Lower light to 18-24" from plants.
Run lights 12-13 hours per day. If you have a high pressure
sodium lamp use it during the bloom cycle otherwise you will have
satisfactory results with metal halide.
- If growing lettuce run vegetative nutrient
- Check reservoir daily
and top off with water and/or nutrient to maintain 2900 PPM.
Raise lights as needed to prevent burning.
- 6-7 weeks later you
will be ready to harvest:
-Lift plants with net pots high enough to cut roots below net pot.
-Cut plant above net pot, accumulate
collars and net pots for
-Put plastic cups in empty sites to
prevent debris from entering
-Hook "root rope" with fingers or instrument at site nearest
drain manifold, pull root rope from tube.
-After emptying all sites flush tubes from the site at high end of
tube with water. You can use a spray wand attached
pump out valve for this or a watering can.
- Pump out reservoir.
Add 1/4 cup of bleach and refill reservoir half full. Run
bleach solution for 15 minutes and pump out the reservoir.
Rinse out the in line filter and replace. Add new vegetative
nutrient, start pump, and set new cuttings!