Saturday, September 18, 2010

Confirmed Tornado Hits Brooklyn

This is my local park.  In 1989 the City Council renamed this park after Maria Hernandez, a community leader who gave her life in the fight to rid her block of drug dealers.  Before that it was called Bushwick Park.  Bushwick came from the Dutch that settled this area in 1660 and called it 'Boswijck' meaning 'heavily wooded area'. 

As I walked around and saw all these trees uprooted, I felt a little stab in my heart.    How ironic that this 'heavily wooded park' is no longer so.  Sure, it is the cycle of life and new trees will take its place.  But I can only imagine how old some of these trees are and for those who have grown their own plants with tender loving care from seed to seedling to maturity, the idea of loosing your plant to a freak of nature presents a little bit of anxiety.

Luckily, I managed to get all my containers inside. My tomato plant is a little stressed and my basil plant was as erect as the leaning tower of Pisa, but they'll bounce back.  I'm waiting to find out what the damage at Boswyck Farms is.  They have a hydroponic farm on top of a roof a few blocks from this park and I hope there crop is intact.

It just goes to show you, that no food supply is ever guaranteed.  And I've been toying with the idea to focus a little bit more on indoor growing lights.  Something to keep my plants safe from tornadoes in Brooklyn.  Sounds funny, but this is the new reality....

(BTW, this park has no bushes, anything that appears to be a bush in this park is a tree...)

Friday, September 10, 2010

Hydroculture Basics & The Importance Of A Water Level Indicator

The trick to keeping plants in Hydroculture is knowing your plants water requirements, your plants root depth and your reservoirs water level. The latter is easily measured with a Water Level Indicator. (These Indicators are fairly difficult to find, which is why I make my own or eyeball it. But they can be bought here.)

There are three zones to keep in mind when planting in hydroculture, 1) the dry zone, 2) the moist zone, 3) the wet zone.  Depending on the water requirement, it's important that the roots will end in one of the appropriate zones.  The majority of plants will be most comfortable with their roots in the moist zone.  The moist zone is determined by the absorption rate and retention of the soil less media.  Clay pebbles will retain water differently than for example vermiculite, perlite or rockwool. Below is a diagram showing the three zones.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Hydroponic Lettuce

I Love/Hate this video. On the one hand it shows the power of hydroponics and growing crops without soil, on the other hand, it's mass production for mass consumption. I wonder how much of this lettuce spoils or gets thrown away?

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Organic Seeds and Beans for Sprouting

Organic seeds and beans for sprouting can be found in brick and mortar stores as well as online. Many common seeds such as alfalfa or mung are easy to find, but others like broccoli sprouts or radish sprouts might be a bit more difficult to procure.

View full post on Organic from LoveToKnow