Update – How Everybody is Doing

Sago is a happy camper in his hydroballs.  He gets lots of morning sun in his eastern facing window and apparently he’s quite happy.  He has sprouted seven new palm fronds that are opening beautifully!

Vrissy is looking as lovely as ever and has had a baby!  I’ll let the little one grow a bit bigger before separating them.

Heather is looking feathery and standing tall and Porthos seems to be growing larger by the day.  I have been so pleased with Lucky that my kids now have their own lucky bamboos.

I do have some sad news to report.  Nanners took another turn for the worse.  I had made a water level indicator for his pot, but it malfunctioned and the rain he had been caught in one afternoon filled his pot more than I had realized.  His poor roots rotted and it doesn’t look like he’ll be recovering this time. His pot is sitting next to Sago’s, a little brown stump standing in hydroballs in the hopes that maybe, just maybe, he isn’t as dead as he looks.

Also, I’m terrible at getting seeds to grow.  Some of our herb, veggie, and flower seeds didn’t grow at all and a few that did grew some sort of fungus.  I will have to research a bit more on starting from seed.  I don’t want to be a baby plant killer!

Finally, I would like to revisit the Maters.  Maters 1 and 2 came to me as seeds with a little hanging basket and a brick of coir in a kit called “Patio/Deck Grape Tomato”.  I didn’t have high hopes for this cheap little kit and of all the seeds that came with it, Maters 1 and 2 were the only to sprout.

Well, when I started transplanting my other plants, I picked up a bottle of MiracleGro QuickStart (not having any hydroponics stores nearby where I could get nutrients specific to hydroponics).  Those other tomato seeds had been sitting dormant in that plastic hanging pot for over a month, but on a whim, I went ahead and fed them.

Holy mackerel!  I now have a bunch of little tomato plants sprouting up in the coir on my front porch.  Maters 1 and 2 may have left this world, but they certainly left behind their legacy in that little white patio pot!

Mourning the Maters

The Maters have drowned.  One of my dear children wanted to help and watered the Maters for me.  I didn’t know about this help until it was too late and both maters were found shriveled and laying at the edge of their jars.  They have since grown crunchy, a sure sign of their demise.

I may have mentioned this already, but roots need oxygen.  In hydroculture, the water level sits below the roots with the hydroballs delivering liquid and nutrients to the plants via capillary action.  This ensures that the roots get everything they need.  If the roots are submerged, the water must be in motion to retain sufficient oxygen for the roots.  So, when my well-meaning kiddo added water to the Maters’ jars the water level rose above the roots, suffocating them.

RIP Maters.  We hardly knew you, but you will be missed.

Oh, The Horror!!

Sad Nanners

I’m sad to report that Nanners is not doing well.  It all started when one of the kiddos dropped a library book on him and knocked him silly.  I straightened him back out and made sure he was stable.  By yesterday evening, he was looking rather droopy.  I put him out on the deck today to get lots of yummy sunshine, but it doesn’t appear to have improved his spirits any.  I hope he bounces back!  I was so looking forward to his little bananas (I think I mentioned he is a producing banana tree).  Anybody have any advice that may make Nanners a happy camper?

Sad Cucumbers

I attempted to transplant the cucumber seedlings from coir to Hydroton, but they don’t seem to be taking it well.  I don’t know if they still needed their little seedling attached, but it fell off both of them when I was washing their roots.  They got some Quick Start root booster in their new homes.  Poor little buggers are all wilty and unhappy.  😦

On a happy note, all of the other plants are looking happy and healthy at this point.  The Mater1 and Mater2 are looking exceptionally vibrant.  We’ll keep an eye on the unhappy plants and see what we can do for them.

The Adventure Begins

I’m one of these nutty people who likes to research before starting anything and I have been researching hydroponics and its variations for weeks. I can’t wait any longer! I found hydroculture and I think it’s a great place for me to start.
I’m so excited! I already bought a ton of Hydroton (5 ltr bags are HUGE and I bought 2!!) and I’ve been collecting slow cooker crockery from Goodwill and mason jars found on my property to put my plants in. I’ve even got some blue Balls!! Hey, blue Ball Perfect Mason jars, gutterbrain!

A humble start

Check out this humble beginning. My first tomato seedlings in blue Balls (I’m calling them Mater1 and Mater2) and a lot of seedlings started in coir (coconut fiber) and placed under Ziploc ‘greenhouses’ that will be transplanted to Hydroton later.  The seedlings include strawberries, veggies, and the kiddos’ marigolds.

Also, meet Vrissy, my bromeliad, or, more specifically, my vriesea christiane. She was transplanted to her hydroculture jar a couple of days ago and is looking great.

My hydrocultured vriesea christiane

Keep an eye out for my palms and my banana tree!