Basics of Crop Steering/High Frequency Fertigation?

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_B_

_B_

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Im looking to get away from handwatering and its been a struggle to find information that doesn’t lead to me having to buy a $400 sensor. What times do I set the drippers to? How many times a day? When do I start feeding multiple times a day?

If you can point me in the direction of good information that works too.
 
C

Canna_Digz

19
3
Im looking to get away from handwatering and its been a struggle to find information that doesn’t lead to me having to buy a $400 sensor. What times do I set the drippers to? How many times a day? When do I start feeding multiple times a day?

If you can point me in the direction of good information that works too.
Basically what you’re doing is watering in small amounts but many times per day or hour instead of a big water once a day so work out how much water you would give each plant per day & then divide that into the hours of the day & water that amount each hour or every few others or whatever the plant needs…only you know what you’re doing on a daily with your garden 🤷‍♂️
 
_B_

_B_

58
18
Basically what you’re doing is watering in small amounts but many times per day or hour instead of a big water once a day so work out how much water you would give each plant per day & then divide that into the hours of the day & water that amount each hour or every few others or whatever the plant needs…only you know what you’re doing on a daily with your garden 🤷‍♂️
That makes sense. I figured id wait till they need watered daily before I hook up the system. Am I supposed to get runoff every feed or just the last one? I see alot of people feeding 6x a day
 
Northdank67

Northdank67

51
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That makes sense. I figured id wait till they need watered daily before I hook up the system. Am I supposed to get runoff every feed or just the last one? I see alot of people feeding 6x a day
i feed like 12times / day at the moment, you need to understand how crop steering works first, if I had to explain what to do it would be something like this:
-feed many times per day start at 2hours after lights on and stop at 2 hours untill lights off.
-you want to feed many times to re up the oxygen levels in the rootzone.
-if you want to get a higher media ec, dont water to runoff and make sure you get decent dryback while not watering (night)
if you want to lower the media ec, you need runoff to do that. if you want to keep media ec the same, just a bit of runoff during the last feed should do the trick) no need for thease 10-20% runoffs if you water more than 3 times a day.
-different growth stages you will need different amounts of dryback/runoff/upkeep but generally during the "upkeep" feeds that are there just to replenish the oxygen and media water content you'd like to be around 90% saturation of the media even if you would try to stack the media ec you still need to have proper levels of water and oxygen in the root zone. hope this helps!
 
_B_

_B_

58
18
i feed like 12times / day at the moment, you need to understand how crop steering works first, if I had to explain what to do it would be something like this:
-feed many times per day start at 2hours after lights on and stop at 2 hours untill lights off.
-you want to feed many times to re up the oxygen levels in the rootzone.
-if you want to get a higher media ec, dont water to runoff and make sure you get decent dryback while not watering (night)
if you want to lower the media ec, you need runoff to do that. if you want to keep media ec the same, just a bit of runoff during the last feed should do the trick) no need for thease 10-20% runoffs if you water more than 3 times a day.
-different growth stages you will need different amounts of dryback/runoff/upkeep but generally during the "upkeep" feeds that are there just to replenish the oxygen and media water content you'd like to be around 90% saturation of the media even if you would try to stack the media ec you still need to have proper levels of water and oxygen in the root zone. hope this helps!
Thats a great explanation. I’ve wondered the difference between a bunch of small shots and two shots. If the overnight dryback can be kept the same why have multiple shots every 20 minutes to full saturation
 
R

RhastaBlasta

76
18
well in most cases, if you are searching for good but not ideal result - you can just give your plant a time to see how it behaves, it will tell you what it needs
 
Northdank67

Northdank67

51
18
Thats a great explanation. I’ve wondered the difference between a bunch of small shots and two shots. If the overnight dryback can be kept the same why have multiple shots every 20 minutes to full saturation
no need for a shot every 20 minutes if your media saturation stays at 90%-95% the idea of having multiple shots per day is to get fresh oxygen to the root zone so the plants health is as good as it can be allso the idea is to keep the media saturation high during daytime so the roots have lots of water to intake during the dryback perioid, duing day some water will allways evaporate from the media and if you dont replace that evaporated water your media ec will start to rise fast and the plants wont be too happy, i have 5 shots that will get the media to about 95%saturated and when the media saturation I have lots of small shots trought out the day to keep the media at 90-95% saturation and I'll let the plants to dry back only during the night.
 
Northdank67

Northdank67

51
18
Thats a great explanation. I’ve wondered the difference between a bunch of small shots and two shots. If the overnight dryback can be kept the same why have multiple shots every 20 minutes to full saturation
think about it this way, x amount of water holds x amount of oxygen, and when the water heats up it can no longer hold as much oxygen so you will have to replenish the oxygen in the root zone by watering. i think maybe 3 shots everyday would be ok in 70%coco30%perlite media since the media can breathe a bit better keeping the oxygen levels higher than just having coco/rockwool as your media, but then again if the media can breathe better then more water will evaporate resulting in a need to water more often.
 
_B_

_B_

58
18
think about it this way, x amount of water holds x amount of oxygen, and when the water heats up it can no longer hold as much oxygen so you will have to replenish the oxygen in the root zone by watering. i think maybe 3 shots everyday would be ok in 70%coco30%perlite media since the media can breathe a bit better keeping the oxygen levels higher than just having coco/rockwool as your media, but then again if the media can breathe better then more water will evaporate resulting in a need to water more often.
I think ill probably just wait till im hand watering daily and then set the timer for a couple feeds a day. Im running straight coco so probably just two then add more as needed. At least until I get the basics down
 
Northdank67

Northdank67

51
18
I think ill probably just wait till im hand watering daily and then set the timer for a couple feeds a day. Im running straight coco so probably just two then add more as needed. At least until I get the basics down
you could allso veg for lets say two weeks, hand water and you will know how much you need to feed per day, then when you switch to drip irrigation take that amount you feed per day and divide in to four smaller feeds/ day, after like 2 days you will know if you need to add more.
 
_B_

_B_

58
18
you could allso veg for lets say two weeks, hand water and you will know how much you need to feed per day, then when you switch to drip irrigation take that amount you feed per day and divide in to four smaller feeds/ day, after like 2 days you will know if you need to add more.
Do I stretch those 4 feeds out all day or every 20 mins or something. If I do all day it wouldn’t have the same drybacks which might not matter idk
 
Northdank67

Northdank67

51
18
Do I stretch those 4 feeds out all day or every 20 mins or something. If I do all day it wouldn’t have the same drybacks which might not matter idk
like 2 bigger feeds to get the media moisture to 60% 2h after lights on if youre using straight coco (coco can hold 63% water before you see runoff.) then set those 2 feeds to when your moisture levels are at around 55% stop at 2h before lights off. overnight dryback during most of the plants life cycle is 30-40% some weeks it might me greater. after 40% dryback overnight your coco is around 40% wet, then just repeat: 2 feeds in the am to get your coco to 60% then just maintain.. NOTE: depending on wich week of flower you're in the dryback targets change.
 
_B_

_B_

58
18
like 2 bigger feeds to get the media moisture to 60% 2h after lights on if youre using straight coco (coco can hold 63% water before you see runoff.) then set those 2 feeds to when your moisture levels are at around 55% stop at 2h before lights off. overnight dryback during most of the plants life cycle is 30-40% some weeks it might me greater. after 40% dryback overnight your coco is around 40% wet, then just repeat: 2 feeds in the am to get your coco to 60% then just maintain.. NOTE: depending on wich week of flower you're in the dryback targets change
How do you maintain without sensors? Just by picking up the pot im guessing
 
H

hoobastank_enthusiast

120
43
Couple things from experience, when the plant is trellised or scrogged in a net you can't lift the pot, so do yourself an eventual favor and learn to tell by sight touch and instinct. Most generic soil sensors are ineffective in coco and the ones made specifically for coco are expensive. Also, traditional "slow-drip" systems work fine with pure water but with nutrients it will have a tendency to gunk and clog. You can get a hydro halo and build a really simple pump/reservoir system for pretty cheap.
 
_B_

_B_

58
18
Couple things from experience, when the plant is trellised or scrogged in a net you can't lift the pot, so do yourself an eventual favor and learn to tell by sight touch and instinct. Most generic soil sensors are ineffective in coco and the ones made specifically for coco are expensive. Also, traditional "slow-drip" systems work fine with pure water but with nutrients it will have a tendency to gunk and clog. You can get a hydro halo and build a really simple pump/reservoir system for pretty cheap.
I rigged something up to water once daily until i can get drip rings and an actual setup. Ill probably order halos then considering my nutrients don’t fully dissolve (megacrop). I also thought about just running the 1/4” hose open ended.
 
H

hoobastank_enthusiast

120
43
I rigged something up to water once daily until i can get drip rings and an actual setup. Ill probably order halos then considering my nutrients don’t fully dissolve (megacrop). I also thought about just running the 1/4” hose open ended.
Right now, I run a hydro halo fed by a 0.3 GPM self-priming transfer pump that pulls from a 1- or 2- gal reservoir. I find that flowrate of 0.3 GPM is slow enough to act similar to a 'drip' system but moves just enough water that it's not gunking up. I've also run higher flowrate aquarium pumps as well, but generally found non-self-priming pumps to be a pain in the ass. IMO anything between like 0.5-2.0 GPM is a good flow rate for a single halo with a relatively short run.
 
B

benjones

368
93
i feed like 12times / day at the moment, you need to understand how crop steering works first, if I had to explain what to do it would be something like this:
-feed many times per day start at 2hours after lights on and stop at 2 hours untill lights off.
-you want to feed many times to re up the oxygen levels in the rootzone.
-if you want to get a higher media ec, dont water to runoff and make sure you get decent dryback while not watering (night)
if you want to lower the media ec, you need runoff to do that. if you want to keep media ec the same, just a bit of runoff during the last feed should do the trick) no need for thease 10-20% runoffs if you water more than 3 times a day.
-different growth stages you will need different amounts of dryback/runoff/upkeep but generally during the "upkeep" feeds that are there just to replenish the oxygen and media water content you'd like to be around 90% saturation of the media even if you would try to stack the media ec you still need to have proper levels of water and oxygen in the root zone. hope this helps!
@Northdank67 how do you measure the media EC when stacking, do you just test the run off EC ?

if so , how high can you feed the EC and how high would the run off EC get to before you would try and lower it ?

thanks
 

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