Saturday, March 7, 2009

Warmth ...

It was actually warm today. I guess the Winter will be over soon. That usually means it is time to really start getting serious about this hydroponics thing. I was down in the basement today looking at rockwool cubes. I usually start my plants in 1" rockwool cubes with some dilute nutrient. There isn't much point in getting them started too early since then they just get large and unruly and if you don't have a place for them they end up all snarled and tangled together and you have a devil's own time getting them separated. So I'm not starting any seeds just yet. I'll probably wait until April sometime, maybe towards the end. Our last day for a freeze/frost in Harrisonburg is about May 17th ... although even then I've had some close calls. One year I pushed the season a day or two and ended up with most of my plants frozen and the nutrient feed tubes had frozen and I pumped all the nutrient out of the tank onto the ground. Bad day in Black Rock! So that has discouraged me from pushing the date too much.

This year there is a bit more to think about since I don't have a complete design for a series of passive systems. I'm not too concerned since some will be really easy (wick systems are that way) but some of the smart valve and modified float valve systems I'm thinking of still have some design time and some fabrication. That can probably wait until early May when I finish up at the college. As the Spring gets closer, the anticipation gets higher. I really love this hobby!

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