Monthly Book Giveaway - February 2023

2024 Garden Season #3: The Hydroponics Experiment (updated)

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This is part 3 in a 14 part series: 2024 Garden Season

Can I use the hydroponic system for seed starting? 


Last year, I grew some drawf tomato plants in my hydroponic system.

It was fun; the tomatoes were cute but they didn’t taste like much.

After the last frost date, I decided to put them in my GreenStalk and see if they would survive the change from water to soil.

They did.
They flourished.
And the tomatoes tasted delicious, once kissed by the sun.

This year, I wanted to compare plants started in the hydroponics with those planted in soil.

I planted tomato seeds, again,  with two seeds in the hydroponics and two seeds in soil, under grow lights. (These are ILDI cherry tomatoes.)

A month later, the hydroponic plants were at least double the size of the soil ones. There was such a huge difference.

Next question: could I transplant the hydroponic ones into soil like I did last year and have the same success or was last year a fluke?

I put all four plants into 3” pots of soils and gave them lots of water.
And I waited.

Three days later and none of the plants are showing signs of stress. But look at the size difference! Those started in the hydroponics are huge in comparison.



UPDATE

APRIL 21

Look at the difference between April 14, when I transplanted into the 3” pots of soil.

The tomato plant started in the hydroponics system had the shock of moving from a water environment to a soil one and its growth paused.

The tomato plant started in soil flourished after being transplanted into a larger pot with more room to stretch its legs, its roots. The result is a growth spurt and it is now taller than the hydroponics sibling.

I wonder what the next change will show?  

a simpler life