Indoor Aeroponic Tomatoes/Peppers

Just noticed my first little baby tomato flowers- they are so tiny I almost missed em! I am estimating my plants are no older than ~30 days. I know tomatoes develop a little quicker than peppers in general, but I seem to remember picking up some info along the lines of pruning the first flowers that arise in order to create a better harvest? Can somebody either verify that info or tell me what I am supposed to do next?

I also thought of another little dilema... The 2 roma tomatoes have a couple tiny flowers each, nothing on the beefsteak yet, and the peppers are no where near flowering I don't think. So my dilema... the plants are under 6500K light right now... I do have a 2700K light but should I wait until the peppers are flowering to add the 2700K light? (I am assuming the peppers still need the 6500K for vegetative growth more than the tomatoes need the 2700K right now?) Help... I am new to this : )

The first 2 pictures were taken 6 days before the following pictures... Can you believe the growth rate????? I am convinced I can see them grow! : P

Also, another question- the picture of the leaf with brownish dry spots... what's the problem there? It occured after a bump in the amount of nutes used in the reservoir so my best conclusion is nutrient toxicity? It's only happening on the tomato's leaves (both beefsteak and roma, but not the peppers) and only on the lower leaves. I did add one more gallon to the reservoir to dilute the nutes until I know what it is. Any help and knowledge shared is greatly appreciated!

ONE more thing (I am so forgetful!) I don't understand why my jalapeno's leaves are curling down so much like that (see pic)? The bell pepper's aren't doing that, and the jalapeno looks really healthy other than that. Should I be worried?

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Peat
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Second that, I'd like to see

Second that, I'd like to see how things are progressing.

Ginger
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Hi, GTG, How're your plants

Hi, GTG,

How're your plants coming along?

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Beth11
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Hi GTG,   Nice set up!  I'm

Hi GTG,

  Nice set up!  I'm still at the aerogarden level - Peat and Gisette are the real veterans.  It looks like they got you all set up with EC and pH.  I'm getting ready for fall/winter growing.  I'm determined to grow tomatoes in the ag that actually produce ripe fruit.  I had fantastic luck with Jalapenos.  They continued to fruit until I got tired of them in the spring.  No luck with cucumbers in the ag; good luck with cucs in soil (earthbox) under fluorescent lights in the basement last year.  Killer swiss chard as well.  We had an awful summer here in southern Maryland with 65 days of humid temps in the 90's.  The humidity is a killer (literally - encourages lots of fungal disease) so I'm ready for my indoor grow.

Beth

 

 

 

 

Peat
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I would leave the sprayers

I would leave the sprayers alone for now, you have to watch the off period as the roots could dry out... I would be hesitant to ruin your plants and add more problems into the mix.

Gisette: they say to run a reduced nute mix with aeroponics, personally I've not done this and just stayed on the normal strength. This is perhaps for 'true' aeroponics though, what we've both done is soak-a-ponics.

Ginger
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Is there much difference

Is there much difference between the strength of nutes used for aeroponics and DWC? I've only done DWC, so the EC values I've been quoting are on that basis.

On your question way above, yes, those are becoming pepper buds. Pace yourself on the excitement, tho - they've got a long ways to go.

Moderator. Author of Indoor SaladEcigs 102, and the Calm Act climate apocalyptic series.

GreenThumbGirl (not verified)
Ooohhhh how I have been

Ooohhhh how I have been awaiting your response! Thanks. I took a quick peak at your guide and I loved it! I will definitely set aside time to read it all. I am glad to hear that I took one step in the right direction!

How long should I wait for them to resume normal growth after that "trial period"? Those poor plants... the first ones are always the guinea pigs! Now that I have all the necessary meters to monitor their environment closer (and record!) things will be considerably more stable for all of the plants. The newer growth leaves are still small. One thought I had about that is that because the plants are bigger now and they are producing more little "new leaves" due to more stem space, the energy is being split many more times over between the little leaves rather than when the plants are smaller they are only trying to produce a few new leaves at a time... what do you think?

I run my sprayers 1 min on 4 min off... only because that is what a general guide to aeroponics said. However, if you recommend me to switch to 15 on 45 off I would gladly take the advice! That would mean less times the pump turns on per day and hopefully an elongated pump life! Please let me know what you think of this. Come to think of it though... maybe the 1 min on 4 min off is for "true" aeroponics containing a MUCH higher psi pump rating and spraying fog, whereas mine are little sprayer heads that shoot fine droplets from a 264gph pump...

PS Thanks for confirming my conclusion on the difference in measurements with EC meters... I was still kind of just hoping I figured all that out right!

Peat
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EC Meter: you have worked it

EC Meter: you have worked it out, your 113 is 1.13 

As regards your EC readings, I've got all that covered in the guide I wrote, look at Part 2 Section 2.4 specifically. I don't think there is anything wrong with the tomatoes/peppers EC, it's normal to get variations, sometimes the EC will rise (due to water being transpired more than nutrients), and sometime it will fall (due to the plant taking on more nutrients than water).

Flora Series: I've used this for many years, I've found that the mixture you make from the recommended dosage invariably reads high, I have to knock it back with water for the feeding stage I'm at. It's always better to have it high as it's easier to bring down with just water, if it reads low then you have to mess around mixing up your 3 nutes to bring it back up.

Don't worry about changing the nutes to different mixtures to suit, the stock formula will work fine - once you have got the hang of things then you can experiment a little by 'tinkering' with the different mixes if you so wish.

Roots: your roots will never drown if you provide them with enough oxygen, have a look at the lettuce raft system I did. The roots were permanently submerged in the water all the time, the plants did not suffer one bit. The raft system, on a much grander scale, is what the commercial lettuce growers use.

I'm unsure what the inside of your system looks like so it's hard to see what you have done, one thing to note though is that your sprayers will be generating a good deal of oxygen themselves as they splash water around, this, combined with your air stone should be enough. Remember, with normal DWC the roots sit mostly in the water anyhow with the top third(ish) being out of the water.

Do you run the sprayers 24/7 and the air stone 24/7? The air stone should be run 24/7 but the sprayer could be time if you so wish. I found with mine that the roots were always waterlogged and matted themselves into one big tangle when run 24/7, next time I do this I will have the sprayers on for 15 and probably off for 45 minutes - allows the roots to dry out a little.

 

 

GreenThumbGirl (not verified)
What is your conclusion to

What is your conclusion to the following...

I've set up a log and I check my EC/pH levels everyday both am and pm. I've put my plants on slightly lower EC levels than recommended. I got some advice from a local hydro/aero enthusiast who said that because the plants transpire more here in dryer air (my humidity stays about 35% in my tent). This creates the plant to drink more and in turn it could be taking up too many nutes with the extra H2O consumption, therefore displaying burnt leaves and leaf curl. So I tried out the advice and my EC levels are as follows (for the last 24 hours):

8/15 AM:

Tomatoes 1.25 / Jalapeno 1.09 / Bell Pepper A 1.00 / Bell Pepper B 1.10

8/15 PM:

Tomatoes 1.26 / Jalapeno 1.10 / Bell Pepper A 1.07 / Bell Pepper B 1.14

8/16 AM:

Tomatoes 1.29 / Jalapeno 1.12 / Bell Pepper A 1.06 / Bell Pepper B 1.13

I did not list my pH levels because they are all stable at/ around 6.1-6.2 for the plants. There was no indication from the gathered pH results that there was anything wrong in that dept. However, notice my tomato EC levels very slowly creeping upwards, as is the jalapeno. The bell peppers seemed to "spit up" for the first 12 hours then decide to start eating? What would you do in this situation? My tomatoes are not getting worse with the symptoms but they seem to be at a stand still or moving very slowly, making it hard to determine if I am making positive changes for them.

*Recently I gathered each set of roots and delicately hung them from the underside of the top of their res making a loop hanger with a zip tie. I did this because I wanted to rule out root drowning from hanging down into the res (maybe the air stone in there is not enough for the roots)? What is your opinion on this change?

Ginger
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Not a problem. I'll leave it

Not a problem.

I'll leave it for Peat to untangle the math, since he's thought about it before. (I suspect your EC is 1.1.)

Cool re links! Next - try uploading your pictures to Picasa and using the Picasa Lightboxer (enable it under "My Account" up on the black nav bar) to insert lightboxed thumbnails into your posts. Hard to find what's what from Attachment 48, etc...

Moderator. Author of Indoor SaladEcigs 102, and the Calm Act climate apocalyptic series.

GreenThumbGirl (not verified)
Thanks Gisette! Here is a

Thanks Gisette!

Here is a link to the EC meter I bought (on ebay):

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=230421836851&ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT

I think I figured out WHY I wasn't getting familiar numbers such as 0.8 and 1.7, etc.... This meter measures in us/cm which is equivalent to 1000x ms/cm (I think other EC meters measure in ms/cm). What do you guys think of my conclusion? So, I don't think I am going to need to be converting any readings... correct?

If you want you can check out this short article I found explaining the different types of EC measurements. Click on the following link THEN click on the drop down labeled "How is EC measured?" This better explains why my E C meter numbers are reading so high.... I think...

www.gemplers.com/tech/iecmeters.htm

P.S. Please note that I figured out how to place a link into my posts hahaha... I'm getting better at this I'm not the most tech savvy...

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