Plants & Growing

Find answers on how to plant, grow, and harvest crops that you grow in your farm.

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56 articles in this collection
Written by Halle Brake and Amy Storey

What organic nutrients should I use?

Farmer First Look: Organic Hydroponic Nutrients
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

Should I be worried about nutrient toxicities?

No. Toxicities are rare.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

How do you avoid seasonal lag in yield?

Switch from summer to winer crops to avoid seasonal lag in yield.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

How does pH affect microbes in aquaponics?

pH Affects How Microbes Are Able to Metabolize Compounds.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

What are microgreens and how do you grow them?

Microgreens are densely planted seedlings
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

How do you start seeds in a wicking tray?

You start seed in a wicking tray, beginning with sifting out pH neutral gravel.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

How do you grow seeds in a greenhouse?

To grow seeds in a greenhouse begin by picking what crops you want to grow.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

How do you care for herbs post-harvest?

Keep herbs cool but not too cool to care for them post-harvest.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

How do you control basil downy mildew?

The only chemical controls proven to control basil downy mildew early outbreaks are systemic fungicides such as Revus (translaminar).
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

How do you control powdery mildew?

If you spot powdery mildew in your greenhouse, remove infected material immediately and with as little disturbance as possible.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

What are microbes and how do they work in aquaponics?

We know about as much about microbes as we do the other side of the galaxy.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

So when is it a good time to clone, and when is it worth buying seeds?

The price of seeds might be much less than the cost of cloning - or vice versa!
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

What are the most common greenhouse pests?

Aphids is one of the most common greenhouse pests.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

What are mechanical pest controls?

Another element of IPM, mechanical pest control includes any physical or hands-on control methods.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

What's the best way to harvest basil?

Learn how to harvest basil for a higher yield & longer shelf life
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

What are nutrient cycling and decomposition?

Decomposition releases compounds sequestered in non-living organic matter.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

Does mint do well in commercial hydroponics?

Mint can do exceptionally well in commercial hydroponics.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

Can pesticides be used in aquaponic systems?

Pesticides can be used in aquaponic systems but it can be risky.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

How do you reduce humidity in a greenhouse?

Increase ventilation to reduce humidity in a greenhouse.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

What is cultural pest control?

"Cultural control" is a way of suppressing pests with the way you manage your production.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

What happens with algae in aquaponics?

Algae can cause many issues in aquaponics but there are ways to combat it.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

How do you care for tilapia fry?

The first thing to do to care for your tilapia fry is separation for the larger fish.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

What's the best way to plant seeds?

There are different ways to plant seeds depending on your individual situation.
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Written by Halle Brake
Updated over a week ago

How do I supplement CO2 in an indoor farm?

You can use CO2 enrichment through CO2 burners, release, or decomposition. The best level of CO2 for a farm is 800-1200 ppm.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How can I cool a greenhouse?

Common methods are shade cloth, evaporative cooling (cooling walls), fogging, geothermal, chillers, and air exchange.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How can I heat my greenhouse?

Greenhouse structure, covering (glazing), and heating method are key to heating and insulating a greenhouse.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

Can I use ladybugs to control pests in my farm?

Yes! Ladybugs are a biological control (a natural predator of) aphids. Ladybugs (esp. the larvae) eat aphids and can be ordered online.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How much CO2 does my farm need?

You want to boost yields by increasing CO2. Here's how to calculate the amount of CO2 you need to supplement depending on your fuel source.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

Should I have one or multiple crops?

Monocropping and polycropping have different benefits and risks. Your choice depends on the markets and demand you're dealing with.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How do I grow Bok Choy in hydroponics?

Bok Choy (or Pak Choy) is a temperature tolerant crop best grown at an EC range of 1.5-2.5 and a pH range of 6.0-7.5.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

Where can I get a Recommended Crop List?

You can use this $10 guide to see the pH, EC, and temperature ranges for crops, as well as other details. Get it on the shop.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

What do microbes do in aquaponics?

Microbes are essential to nutrient availability & plant health. They are responsible for nitrification & mineralization in the AP ecosystem.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How do I cool my greenhouse?

Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

Can I use pesticides in aquaponics? How?

Pesticides can be used in aquaponics IF growers are aware of a) open water surface and b) the lethal dose or concentration (LC50 or LD50).
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How much light do my seedlings need?

Seedlings need 120-150 micromoles/sec/m² of PAR for 12-18 hours a day.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How do I breed tilapia in my aquaponics system?

Although breeding can be tough, it might be more cost effective than buying fry. Here are the basic steps.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How Far Should My Lights Be From My Seedlings?

LEDs should be 8-12 inches from the seedling foliage. Fluorescents should be 5-6 inches away.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

What is BSA (Biological Surface Area) and why does it matter?

BSA is the surface area where microbes live. The more BSA in an aquaponic system, the better nutrient cycling and response time.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

What is nitrification and how does it work?

Nitrification is a process through which organic nitrogen (from fish food and ammonia) gets turned into plant-available nitrogen.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How to I grow rosemary and what are the best conditions?

The ideal conditions for rosemary are: EC: 1.0-1.6 pH range: 5.5-6.0 Temperature: 75-85º F
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How do I grow lettuce and what are the best conditions?

The ideal conditions for lettuce are: Temperature: 45-70º F, ideally in the 60’s EC: 0.8 – 1.2 pH range: 5.6-6.2
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

Harvesting Basil for Higher Yield and Longer Shelf Life

Basil prefers warmer temperatures (65-95ºF), a pH range of 6.2 - 6.8, and EC between 1.4 and 2.2.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

Will a galvanized tank kill my fish?

Galvanized steel tanks can cause zinc toxicity. If you have one, it may be the reason that your fish are dying.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How do I grow chives and what are the ideal conditions?

The best conditions for chives are: pH: 6.1-6.8 EC: 1.8-2.2 Temperature: 65-80º F
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

What nutrients are in my aquaponic system, where do they come form, and what should I supplement?

There are 16 nutrients that your plants need. 3 of them come in the air and water. The rest come from fish waste and supplements.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How do I grow mustard greens and what are the ideal conditions?

The best conditions for mustard greens are: pH range: 6.0-7.5 EC/PPM: 1.2-2.4 Temperature: 50-75º F
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How do I prevent mold & algae on seedlings?

If the medium is too wet or bright, or if media is infected before use, algae and mold can become a problem.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How do I grow basil, and what are the ideal conditions?

The best conditions for growing hydroponic basil are: EC: 1.6-2.2 pH range: 5.6-6.6 Temperature: 65-95º
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How should I add fish to my aquaponic system?

There's a right way and a wrong way to introduce fish into a new system. Here's how to cycle your aquaponic system properly.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How does potassium behave in aquaponics? How do I supplement potassium?

Potassium (K) is the most common deficiencies. You can supplement it several ways, but calcium and magnesium also impact K availability.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How do I tell if my tilapia is male or female?

You can sex a tilapia with a bit of food dye.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

What does nitrogen do in my aquaponic system, and how should I manage nitrogen?

Nitrogen is perhaps the most important plant nutrient. It enters your system as protein (fish feed) then is transformed into NO3 (nitrates).
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How many fish should I put in my ZipGrow aquaponics system?

A good stocking rate is 1 lb of fish (pounds, not fish!) per 8-10 gallons of water. You can do more fish if you have more filtration.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How do I manage magnesium in aquaponics?

Magnesium (Mg) is crucial to enzymes, proteins, and the machinery of photosynthesis. Deficiencies show as interveinal chlorosis.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

How should I manage iron in my aquaponic system?

There are several forms of iron you can use to supplement. FeEDHA is the best to use.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago

Can I use lemon juice in my aquaponic system?

Lemon juice should NEVER be used to lower pH in an aquaponic system. It will harm microbial populations and disrupt necessary processes.
Written by Amy Storey
Updated over a week ago