Many growers tend to forget that regular attention to the most remedial of chores can significantly affect the size and quality of indoor yields. But with the start of the new year, now is the best time to start positive changes in your everyday routine when it comes to your indoor garden. Here are five areas of common garden and equipment neglect that you need to keep in mind.
Balance Out Your Water's pH
Having the correct pH balance in your nutrient mixes, as well as your regular water supply, is essential for vital plant processes. When repeatedly using the same nutrient recipe over extended amounts of time, cultivators might lose sight of their pH levels. This is because growers assume they should just be adding the same amount of pH up or pH down with recurrent nutrient mixes.
Growers also fail to check the pH of their water supply when watering with straight water. Both bad habits can have devastating consequences on the health of a garden. This is because the pH of both well and city water can fluctuate with changes in the weather.
Even if you have been using the exact same nutrient recipe and water supply for years, resolve to take the extra time and check your pH levels with every watering. The digital hand-held meters out there make this step in the growroom super simple.
It is easy to lose motivation for consistent spraying if you’re not experiencing any observable issues with bugs, molds, or mildews. If you fail to do preventative upkeep with regular spraying, greater problems can easily arise.
Once bugs, molds, and mildews have taken hold of a garden, the work load involved with eradicating the problem is far greater than it is with preemptive measures. Consequently, precautionary spraying should be done at least twice a week to ensure a vigorous yield.
Different sprays should be rotated throughout the plant’s life cycle to ensure pests don’t build tolerances to specific products. Don’t neglect this simple chore in the new year.
Read More: Battling Bugs the Organic Way
Clean from A to Z
Having a sterile environment in a growroom goes far beyond what is visible to the naked eye. Most plant nuisances are next to invisible in their infantile stages. Even if your previous crop was harvested completely free of visible pests and mildew problems, eggs and spores can still be lurking in the growroom.
The conscious cultivator realizes that every component of a growroom needs to be sanitized on a regular basis. Pots, walls, floors, equipment, and reservoirs should be thoroughly cleaned with a mild bleach and water solution after each harvest. To ensure the most efficient performance of hoses, pumps, and sprayers, these tools should be bleached and sanitized regularly to eradicate the buildup of decomposing organic residues.
The benefits of fundamental cleanliness cannot be overstated. This practice will help with future troubleshooting scenarios and save you loads of heartache. Put this New Year’s resolution at the top of your list.
Sanitize Glass Hoods
As all indoor gardeners are aware, electrical bills are one of the principal expenses in a growroom operation. However, for those cultivators using air-cooled hoods, regular cleaning of the tempered glass on light fixtures is often overlooked. Over time, dust and dirt particles build up on both surfaces of the glass and considerably diminish the strength of the light that plants receive.
As a result, electrical bills remain inflated while usable spectrums of light slowly wane. For the New Year, make your lighting as efficient as possible and plan on cleaning the glass of your light fixtures with a glass-cleaning product at least once per harvest.
Keep Track of Dated Equipment
If you keep your operation working all year long, it’s easy to lose track of the ages of bulbs, ballasts, carbon filters, and fans. Over time and with heavy use, the performance of these essential growroom components begin to decline.
It’s important to keep detailed records on equipment purchase dates and your accompanying receipts to ensure maximum performance. In conjunction with the use of a light meter, knowing the age of your light bulbs will help with decisions concerning the timing of replacements.
Keeping detailed accounts of purchase dates will also help ensure all equipment warranties are honored when applicable. This detail-oriented approach to equipment maintenance will save you time and money in the new year.
Read Next: Efficiency and the Indoor Garden