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Hydroponics Farming: Set up a Hydroponic Unit Using PVC Pipes & Grow Fresh Veggies

If you love farming but don’t have much space and time then this article is for you. Today we will tell you how to grow your own veggies or leafy greens with very little time, resources and space.

Abha Toppo
Hydroponic Unit Using PVC Pipes

If you love farming but don’t have much space and time then this article is for you. Today we will tell you how to grow your own veggies or leafy greens with very little time, resources and space.

All you have to do is build your own hydroponic unit with the help of PVC pipes. This method is known as Nutrient Film Technique or NFT system of hydroponics.

Step by step process to build a hydroponic unit with PVC pipes

Follow the steps given below to set up a hydroponics system at your home;

1st Step – Collect 4 PVC pipes, PVC elbow connectors to join the grid, 1 PVC cap, a big size container with a lid, a submersible hydroponic pump, ready-made net pots / disposable cups, ready-made growth medium, ready-made nutrient mix and hosepipe.

2nd Step – Now cut the PVC pipes, based on your need, cut 4 PVC pipes.

3rd Step - Fix them in the grid of your choice. Then join the pieces to make the desired grid of your choice – zigzag/straight. Join the ends of these PVC pipes to each other using PVC elbow connectors.

4th Step - Make holes to hold the net pots. Then drill holes in the PVC pipes to make holders for net pots. (Net pots is basically plant holders that come in different sizes. They hold the growth medium & seed/plant in the hydroponic system.

Now take the netted pot & make a mark on PVC pipe and cut the circle out. You can get these net pots from market or make them with disposable cups.

5th Step – Now you have to make net pots for planters. For this you can use disposable cups by cutting them out at the sides & then piercing the bottom of the cups with big holes. Place them to the system.

6th Step – Its time to install the reservoir. Proper nutrient mix combines primary nutrients such as nitrogen, potassium & magnesium; secondary nutrients such as calcium, sulphur & phosphorus; micronutrients like manganese, zinc, iron, copper, molybdenum & boron.

Recipe for the solution to be mixed in 20 litres water

25 ml of calcium nitrate, 8.3 ml of potassium nitrate, 1.7 ml of potassium sulfate, 6.25 ml of monopotassium phosphate, 17.5 ml of magnesium sulfate and 2 ml of trace elements.

Keep the solution in a food-grade container at room temperature and away from light. Shake it well before use.

7th Step - Preparing the Nutrient-rich solution. You may buy the nutrient-mix online or prepare it at home. This mix contains primary nutrients such as nitrogen, potassium, magnesium; secondary nutrients like sulphur, calcium, phosphorus & micronutrients like iron, manganese, copper, zinc, molybdenum, boron.

8th Step - Fill the reservoir & fix hydroponic pump. Put the water pump at the base of reservoir and fill it with the nutrient-rich solution. The submersible tank pumps are placed at the bottom of tank & designed to pump water upwards.

In this process, the pump when turned on will fill the PVC pipes with nutrient-rich water & facilitate plant growth.

9th Step - Select your growth medium. You can use cocopeat, coconut fiber/coconut chips etc.

10th Step – Now select the plants that you want to grow like leafy greens, herbs, vegetables and fruits.

Points to keep in mind

The NFT system uses a pump to spread nutrient-rich solution to the plants & recycles the unused or excess water solution back to the reservoir.

Refill the reservoir as and when required.

Test the nutrient levels & the water level weekly.

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