Hydroponic Systems: Assembling An Aeroponic System At Home
Aeroponics is a hydroponic system in which the plants are suspended over a bath of nutrient solution which is sprayed into the plant's roots.
Drill with 7/8 and 1/8-inch bits
- Hole saws - 2 7/8 inch diameter and 4-inch diameter
- 30 gallons food tote with lid
- 200 gpm submersible water pump
- 3-inch net cups
- 1/2x6-inch poly cut off nipple
- PVC reducing threaded female tee
- 2 PVC slip end caps
- 4-inch PVC knock out cap
- 3/4-inch PVC pipe
- 1/2-inch rubber grommet
- 1/2-inch barbed elbow
- 1/2-inch translucent vinyl tubing
- Tube clip
- 10 feet closed cell foam gasket tape
Drill the holes for the plant pots in the tote lid with the 2 7/8-inch hole saw. Put a 4-inch inspection port in the top as well. The tote lid underside should have a careful application of gasket tape around the outside edge. This will help prevent sprayed water from being forced out under the lid. It should also reduce evaporation of the nutrient solution.
Cut the 3/4-inch PVC pipe into two pieces each, 3-inches less in length than half the length of the tote bottom. Insert into the PVC tee and fit the end caps.
Drill 5x1/8-inch holes equally spaced along the top of the manifold. Insert the micro sprayers into the holes. The micro sprayer might be held in place by friction or they might be tapped for a screw fitting.
Connect the Poly Cut Off Nipple
The cut off nipple will screw on the female leg of the tee. The other end off the tee will screw into the outlet of the submersible pump. The pump will be placed centrally on the bottom of the tote with the manifold immediately above it.
Fit Level Meter
The level meter is simply a tube through which the level of nutrient solution can be seen. Drill a 7/8-inch hole 1/2 inch from the bottom of the tote where you want the meter to be. Directly above it and 2 inches from the top of the tote, drill a 1/8-inch hole and fit the hose clip. Fit one end of the barbed elbow into the translucent tube. Fit the grommet into the 7/8-inch hole and insert the other end of the barbed elbow through the grommet. Fit the other end of the translucent tube into the hose clip.
Hang Plants and Turn on Pump
The plant pot holes in the lid of the tote are for suspending plants. The plants will be in the net cups with their support medium. Simply drop a cup into each hole drilled for the purpose. Half fill the tote with nutrient solution and connect the pump to the mains. You will hear the pump working and probably see some spray from the 4inch access hole. Push the 4inch knock out cap into the access hole.