This video presents an in-depth look into the workings of one gardener’s indoor 30-day hydroponic lettuce growing system.

Unlike outdoor gardening that has to deal with complicated variables such as sun, weather, moisture, fertilizer, soil types, wind, temperature and other things that can go wrong, growing hydroponic lettuce is a lot easier because its variables are a lot more predictable and easier to control.

To construct the rails, the gardener drilled holes into a ‘post jacket,’ a sturdy, rectangular post typically used in home construction; it’s made from hard, high quality and non-toxic plastic. The holes have at least a foot of space between each other, and are about 4 to 5 inches in size, the perfect size to hold the net cups where the lettuce will grow.

The gardener constructs 3 rails of this kind, each one sealed on one end by a post top or cap. On this same end, each rail has a PVC pipe connection running down it, all of which are joined in a single manifold that leads to the reservoir. For easy access to the reservoir, the drain pipe can be easily twisted off. In fact, instead of being glued together, the pipes are pressed together, so all of it can be taken apart easily for transportation, maintenance, or whatever other purpose.

Inside the reservoir is a multi-valve air pump. Two of the pump’s fittings are connected to the 2 air stones in the reservoir. You can also see the circulating pump, its connection to the main unit, as well as the drain that feeds nutrient water back into the reservoir.

Despite having a rather easy time maintaining and running the unit, the gardener is having difficulty with getting the exact recommended levels of pH (6.0-7.0) and ppm (600-800) for growing hydroponic lettuce. This requires monitoring and gets easier with experience. There are mathematical calculations available that would make this process easier.

The results are still extraordinary, as our gardener shows with an appetizing and healthy hydroponic snack at the end of the video.

Filed under: Homemade Hydroponics

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