WINTER GARDENING WITH SOILLESS MEDIA
If you’re gardening without soil there will be some distinct changes in your garden when winter starts. Because aquaponic and hydroponic systems are water based, temperatures can drop quickly and take your garden by surprise! But you can avoid a drop in produce for your family. Read on to find out Aqua Gardening’s best tips at maintaining your vegetable and fish gardening system in the cold months:
Winter Growing Tips For Hydroponics
- Plants get shocked by cold water just like us! Use a water heater in the water reservoir to keep temperatures in the 18-21C range.
- Switch the crop to vegetables which thrive in the cooler weather, like brassicas (cauliflower and broccoli).
- Ensure the system is still catching plenty of sun when the sun is lower in the sky. No direct sunlight = no growth!
- Cover the vegetables if there is a chance of frost.
Winter Growing Tips For Aquaponics
- Keep fish tank water in a comfortable range to keep your fish happy. This often means using a water heater to boost the water temperature up.
- Reduce the feed to the fish tank to minimise the amount that remains uneaten. Feed them at the warmest time of the day and only for 2 minutes with as much as they can eat in this time.
- If the fish are eating less, your plants will be receiving fewer nutrients. Boost the growth of your plants with organic nutrients. Bloom Yellow Bottles has some excellent boosters which are tried and proven in Aquaponics. Basic seaweed powders and liquids may help with micronutrients, but they won’t boost the growth of the plants.
Don’t take it for granted that your system will thrive regardless of the temperature – plants are like humans and need some extra TLC when the temperatures drop.