In our travels and through our experiments, we come across interesting products that we love and that we think growers like us will also love. Below is a list of some of those things.
Nutrients are a big part of the success of indoor gardening. While we have used many that work well, we have had really good success with the following products.
For passive hydroponics, be sure to use a nutrient that is designed for hydroponics.
Here are two nutrient products we recommend:
- MaxiGro and MaxiBloom by General Hydroponics. These products by General Hydroponics have provided us with consistently good results, an inexpensive price tag and long shelf-life. We offer MaxiGro for sale on this website and you can purchase a 2.2 lb bag via this link. (Link to purchase MaxiGro).
- Botanicare Pure Blend Pro.
In our search for an organic fertilizer that we could be impressed with, we revisited this brand. It works significantly better than most of the other organic fertilizers we have played with. Here is the organic disclosure from their website:
Q: Is Pure Blend Pro completely organic?
A: Pure Blend Pro is natural and organic-based, not “100% organic.” Although it is created from natural and organic inputs such as humic acid, guano, kelp, rock phosphate, and carbonates, these naturally-occurring inputs are processed for enhanced stability and product quality purposes which prevents it from qualifying as completely organic.
Honestly, you can grow microgreens in so many types of containers. They grow very quickly and there are many no-fuss varieties. A very economical choice is to reuse a greenhouse flat with drainage (like the kind you buy your annuals in) and place in a tray without drainage.
But we did invest in this seed sprouting tray from LeJoy Garden and it works amazingly! The hood helps to keep in humidity until the seeds germinate, it’s BPA free, and it’s easy to clean.
Most of our favorite varieties of greens and vegetables are available from Fruition Seeds. They have a terrific selection, great germination, and their customer service leaves warm, fuzzy feelings in your heart. Bonus: The seed and plant descriptions are just straight up entertaining and one of the co-founders does some really great webinars.
Find them here: www.fruitionseeds.com
Tomato Trellis Planter
B.J. was pretty excited when she discovered this container by HydroFarm for growing veggies indoors! She had it set up and planted within days of receiving it. It has so many cool and practical features like a 4-foot trellis, self watering capabilities, and WHEELS!! Plus, it is deep and has pretty sturdy construction. It was simple to put together. Coming soon is a series of Youtbe videos on B.J.’s adventures with this planter.
Large Baker’s Rack
Once our customers have done a bit of seeding or growing using the Kratky method and realize how easy it is, some, like us, get a bit enthusiastic. We love the multi-tiered shelving unit because you can grow SO MUCH without using a large footprint of your household space AND it provides a built in, convenient place to hang the lights. We set the adjustable shelves to different heights, the shortest being on the top (about 14”) and the tallest on the bottom (about 30”). We use the top shelf for the initial seeding and germination and move the plants down as they grow. This way, you don’t need to keep adjusting the lights. Bonus points for shelving units that have castors.
Small Baker’s Rack
If you just want to start a few plants at first, you can use a mini version of the large baker’s rack – it has all the benefits of its big brother but cute and compact. You can pick these up at any home improvement store or online pretty inexpensively. Just make sure you get one with adjustable shelves.
Commercial PAR meters can run into the thousands but we have had luck with this Hydrofarm Quantum PAR meter and its readings are only a couple decimal points from the reading on our much more expensive version. Seedlings, many low-light loving houseplants and leafy greens need to have a minimum PAR reading from about 80-150 micromoles. Herbs and light loving plants grown for foliage appreciate higher values from 150-400 micromoles. Plants you are growing to produce a fruit or flower will do best if exposed to PAR valus of 400 or more micromoles. This easy-to-use meter will let you know exactly what your light is delivering at any distance from the plant, which makes it the perfect tool to determine the ideal distance your plants should be from the light. It is sold by Hydrofarm on a variety of online retailers with a 1 year warranty. Just be sure you get a PAR meter and not a meter that reads lumens.