Growing crops by using the AutoPot system is one of the rising trends in the gardening world. This nutrient delivery system delivers plant feed and water by using an AQUAvalve.
There are so many benefits to AutoPot, for example, you don’t have to use soil or electricity. However, even though it is beginner-friendly, growing high-quality pot in this system may be a tiny bit tricky.
Here are some tips on how to have a perfect crop in your AutoPot system…
1. Hand Water or Feed Your Plants
Plants are usually put into the AutoPot systems before they have established roots. For your plants to get the needed nutrients, you may want to hand water them in the beginning, until their roots develop. If you’re growing in the soil while still implementing the AutoPot system, you should use water. On the other hand, if you’re growing in Coco or Rockwool, substitute water with a light nutrient.
2. Choose Growing Media Wisely
The media mix for these systems should be very light and fluffy. The system needs the medium to be permeable so it can deliver the nutrients effectively. The recommended medium mixture consists of a 1:1 blend of pH stable clay pebbles on one hand and coco, soil, or rockwell on the other.
3. Line Your Pots
One of the best tricks you can do is to line your pots with pebbles before filling the pot with the medium and planting. The lining will help adequately drain the medium and soak in the residual minerals such as salt. For the best results, make sure that this layer is around an inch thick and properly washed before being added to the pot. You should also ensure you use line cleaner which will remove the residual minerals and keep the pipework clean.
4. Carefully Choose Nutrients
One of the best things about the AutoPot system is that the nutrients are being equally distributed to every plant. However, sometimes the system can be blocked and most of the time it’s due to improper nutrient choice.
To avoid pipe blockage use nutrients that are light and mineral based. If you’re not sure whether the liquid nutrient you already use is suitable for the system, here’s a tip. Put a spoonful of the nutrient into a cup of water and let it sit overnight. If the two have separated, the nutrient is not appropriate for the system because the identical thing will occur in the pipes too.
Additionally, steer clear of organic nutrients since they are known to affect oxygen levels, block the pipework and even result in foam.
5. Correct Gravity Pressure is the Key
Since AutoPot operates by utilizing gravity pressure, it is very important to be wary of the position of your system. You should set it up a minimum six inches higher than the first AQUAvalve. This way you’ll ensure the nutrients will nicely flow through the piping.
6. Occasionally Drain Off the Solution
Flushing the pipework will get rid of any build-up in the system. You can drain the nutrient solution by turning the taps at the end of the pipes. It is recommended to flush around one or two liters of the liquid every two weeks.
7. Clean After Every Harvest
Cleaning your AutoPot is crucial if you want to get the most out of your system. You should make sure to pay special attention to the piping and the AQUAvalve.
AQUAvalves are easier to clean since they can be safely put into the dishwasher, but pay attention to the silicone parts – they need to be removed before cleaning and put back once everything is dry. Pipework should be cleaned with a line cleaner of your choice.