Presentation (parts 1 and 2) Summary
by humidity management
humidity at the temperature - related rate. Average ideal humidity is
in range from 70% to 85%. Also, there are absolute minimum and
absolute maximum criteria. For particular criteria refer to
Autogrow.com. Note: Humidity below of recommended minimum
and higher than recommended maximum will reduce water transpiration of the
plant. Low water transpiration will slow transport of fertilizer from
roots to the leaves and will reduce plant photosynthesis efficiency.
Note for windowsill growers: to prevent mould contamination of your
home never keep humidity higher than 55-60% at your growing area.
Improve photosynthesis by CO2
Note: CO2 is
an essential substance, converted by the plant's photosynthesis into sugars,
starches and cellulose.
If possible, use ambient
air CO2 enrichment.
Provide CO2 enrichment
reducing boundary leaf layer by the forced air movement at the plant canopy.
To prevent negative impact on the plant transpiration and to prevent
possible desiccation of the plant use non-continuous air movement. Fans at
my greenhouse operate on timer (15 minutes of air movement then 30 minutes
of still air period).
Improve photosynthesis by
Improve photosynthesis during
growing season by management of water uptake and transpiration:
During sunny weather use
less concentrated fertilizer solution - approximately 500 ppm of total
dissolved solids (TDS). During sunny weather plant needs more water to
transpired to cool down leaf surface. Increased water transpiration in
conjunction with high concentration of fertilizer could cause
fertiliser-burn-like stress to the plant and reduce it's photosynthesis
During overcast weather
use more concentrated fertilizer - approximately 700 ppm of total TDS (see
details below). During overcast weather water transpiration is greatly
reduced. Irrigation with plain water or with low concentrated fertilizer
solution will support active water absorption by the plant. Low water
transpiration in conjunction with continuous active water absorption could
cause oedema-like stress to the plant and reduce it's photosynthesis
Improve nutrients uptake by
fertilizer application management:
Mounted plants with
exposed roots-first apply fertilizer and than, approximately 30 minutes
later, rinse with plain water.
plants-irrigation first (use double irrigation by tap water with 15-30
minutes interval between irrigations), than fertilizer application.
How to prepare CaMg-enriched
water for fertilizer solution:
Take ground oyster shell
or small chunks of dolomite or a mixture of both in the amount, enough to
fill~3" of gallon bucket (bucket #1) Note: Pre-rinse ground
oyster-shell well to remove sea salts.
Fill the bucket with tap
water and allow to stay for 1 week. Note: In my conditions after 1
week TDS will increase from 30 ppm to approximately 70 ppm. Longer exposure,
even for several months, will not cause increase of TDS higher than 70 ppm.
After a week of exposure,
pour calcium enriched water to another 5 gallon bucket (bucket #2). Leave
all oyster shell & dolomite sediments in the bucket #1.
Use calcium enriched water
in bucket #2 for fertilizer solution preparation and apply that solution on
the same day. Note: To prevent precipitation, first dissolve
fertilizer crystals in a small jar of tap water and then add that
concentrated solution into bucket #2.
Refill bucket #1 with tap
water and leave it till next week fertilizing.
After each 3 month add
fresh portion of pre-rinsed oyster shell & dolomite to the bucket #1.
Note: With time, even if still enough sediment is in the bucket, its
capacity to release minerals into water drops and TDS will not reach initial
70 ppm. Fresh portion of oyster shell & dolomite will improve it.
Seasonal fertilizer rotation:
Active growing period:
from late February - March to late September. Use high nitrogen fertilizer
formula, relatively high concentration of fertilizer solution and frequent
application. My favourite fertilizer for Protocol #1 (see below) is a
Miracle-gro All Purpose Plant Food (24-8-16) Apply it by-weekly at the
beginning of the growing season and weekly from April-May.
Period of maturation
and dormancy: from September to February. Use low nitrogen
fertilizer formula, low concentration of fertilizer solution and
non-frequent application. For Protocol #1 use a Miracal-Gro
Tomato Plant Food (18-18-21). Apply weekly, then by-weekly at the beginning
of the season and monthly from December. I use it at 400 ppm at the
beginning and the end of the season and at 200 ppm concentration in the
middle of the season.