A Winter Checklist for Your Grow Room
With winter weather just around the corner, it’s an excellent time to get your grow room prepared for conditions that are less than favourable. You can simply spend about five minutes using the checklist below to make sure that you’re ready for whatever Mother Nature throws your way in the midst of winter.
- The temperature inside your grow room should be monitored day and night so that you can identify any failure in your heating system immediately. To get the results you want from your hydroponics system you will have to maintain a room temperature that is conducive to growing healthy plants. By purchasing a meter that gives you a reading for humidity and temperature you will have an accurate gauge on which to base temperature adjustments if necessary. Generally speaking you should aim for a temperature that ranges from 24⁰C to 28⁰C.
- Can additional heat be generated if your growing room temperature drops suddenly? If you have an oil radiator or one of the convenient tubular heaters, you should be able to recover from loss of temperature rather quickly.
- Have you sealed your grow room so that cold air and draughts won’t disrupt growing? Be sure to caulk around your windows as well as any other openings in the walls that can allow cold air to enter.
- Check to make sure that your lights are coming on at the appropriate times. Since temperatures normally drop during the night, it’s recommended that lights be run during the night. You can use HID lamps that maintain a suitable temperature in which your plants will thrive. Once the sun rises, the amount of generated heat that your grow room needs will be reduced.
- Try to draw some fresh air into the grow room from outside when possible. Don’t allow the cold air to come in direct contact with any of your plants, but instead use an intake fan to bring fresh air into an adjoining room and then direct it into the grow room.
- Remember to never set your plants on the floor if they are growing in pots. The floor beneath them can be extremely cold and this will shock the plants. If you want to place any plants on the floor, use a tray under them to buffer any cold air.
- Track the temperature of your nutrient solution. It’s important for your plant roots to receive access to a nutrient solution which will promote substantial development and rapid growth. By using a digital thermometer you can successfully maintain the proper temperature for your nutrient solution. Keep in mind that only one or two degrees can make a difference in the health and growth of your plants; a temperature that ranges from 18⁰C to 20⁰C is ideal for them to thrive. Remember that a nutrient solution that is too hot can cause root rot, and one that is too cold can stunt the growth of your plants.
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