Looking good! So - what are you going to grow in them?
Moderator. Author of Indoor Salad, Ecigs 102, and the Calm Act climate apocalyptic series.
Been a busy couple of days!
Came home to find dribbles of water all around the Autopots setting on the floor! Mopped it up and waited to see where it was coming from - nothing. The tank grommet was tight and nothing was dripping out of the pots. Finally came to the conclusion that our old, sloppy dog got a drink or two from the empty pot. Whew!
The coco holds a lot of water so went on a perlite expedition. Finally found a big bag of coarse perlite at the largest hydro store halfway 'cross town. Dang, they've got some great goodies!
The grow tent will hold two double autopots with a little room to spare until I put the double waterproof liner inside. Now it's almost too tight a fit, may have to trim a little off a couple of corners.
Now I know why my T5 lamp was hung with such a long cable... I got rid of the cables and installed a couple of eyelets dead center on each end. It hung at a 45* angle when I re-installed it with the high/low hangers. They'd put the ballast on one side of the fixture and nowhere near enough counterweight to make it balance. I had to add about 3# of weight to make it level. The high/low hangers are a slick idea but don't live up to the hype, useful nonetheless.
By this time tomorrow everything should be up and going, wish me luck!
Urk. Fortunately Janet Ann (drann) warned me about that one... Though I've only washed a few handfulls so far, and did them in the sink.
So far so good, just letting it cycle with a brick of dry coco coir slowly expanding in one pot. One 1.5# brick will be more than enough for each of these 8.5" x 8" deep pots, it's almost to the top and still rising, reminescent of an old Johnny Cash song. It may be over the top by morning so I put the cover over the smartvalve just in case. These are awfully small 10" pots but look plenty big enough anyway.
I've learned two lessons so far - don't mess around with the grommet and tubing on the bottom of the tank, put a drop of soap for lubricant and you're good to go. I almost mangled it and it has a small ooze, fixable with a little silicone if needed. Second lesson - and a big one - DO NOT clean about 20 liters of hydroton pellets in the bathtub! I figured I'd just punch a bunch of holes in the bag and run water through it. I had no idea that 3 or 4 pounds of clay would go down our drain. It may never be the same.
Yay! Looking forward to seeing how the autopots work, BB!
They're here!! It took maybe five minutes to get one going. The hardest part was getting the tubing in the grommet at the bottom of the reservoir. A drop of dish soap made it slide right in, I put about 4 gallons of water in the tank sitting on a table and within a minute the tray was full. I think I'll put a couple bricks of coco coir in the pots so I can watch it work and let the coco coir soak up water and expand.
This poor hydro shop, they had a dozen bricks of GH coco tek @ $2 ea, I bought six plus almost half a 50 liter bag of hydroton pellets for $18. They were out of perlite!! Said they may get some more stock in a week or two, depending on whether sales were enough for the home office to replenish them. How sad! Off to play...
That's what I'm guessing. They go on to say they've been using it for a few years at the Eden Project. Now why would their final 2008 brochure still be saying compost and why did I have to visit a dozen sites to find the dimensions on a US reseller's site? I dunno about you Brits, maybe it's time we seceded.
Autococo: it's coco coir mixed with perlite - the perfect blend then? It does not say what the ratios are though.
It struck me as strange that Autopot themselves recommend compost. I've used it outside but would never think about using it inside. Take a look at their website , the autopot brochure is towards the bottom. Oddly, up top they also offer what they call Autococo which seems to be coco coir mixed with something and they recommend it. Whatever, I'm going with coco coir and perlite.
I see 61 'autopot' items now in eBay? Why it did not find them yesterday - pass.
I would not use compost, coco coir and perlite is much better. The compost can become too saturated so it's best to stick to what your hydro guy said. I'm blinkered to perlite/vermiculite, never thought of coco coir.
Perlite - not good at holding water, good at aeration; therefore drier.
Vermiculite - not good at aeration but good at holding water.
Coco Coir - good at holding water, good aeration and good drainage. Basically nice all round.