The information below is the Tower Farm manual (provided by the manufacturer) which gives full information in regards to assembly, seedling and transplanting, irrigation system, nutrients, tower configuration, cleaning, organic pesticides, warranty etc.
1. Reservoir Tub Float Valve Installation for Tower Garden
Reservoir Tub Float Valve Installation for Tower Garden - Part 1
Reservoir Tub Float Valve Installation for Tower Garden - Part 2
Reservoir Tub Float Valve Installation for Tower Garden - Part 3
Wrap Teflon tape clockwise onto the threads of the float valve. Make sure the wraps are flat and even. A few wraps should be sufficient to prevent leakage.
If the tape “balls up”, unwrap and discard tape, then rewrap. Because the threaded fittings are plastic, the connection cannot be over-tightened to compensate for a badly-wrapped joint.
Reservoir Tub Float Valve Installation for Tower Garden - Part 4
Thread the 1/2” conical socket adapter onto the male thread adapter outside the reservoir tub, until it is hand tight .
To finish tightening the black conical adapter, use a pair of slip-joint pliers or a wrench, while gripping the valve body on the inside of the reservoir tub.
DO NOT OVER-TIGHTEN! Over-tightening will strip out the plastic threads.
Reservoir Tub Float Valve Installation for Tower Garden - Part 5
2. Tower Garden Assembly – Reservoir Tub Lid And First Growing Pot
Tower Garden Assembly - Reservoir Tub Lid And First Growing Pot - Part 1
Seat the first grow pot into the reservoir lid. The smallest holes in the bottom of each pot should match up with the four small holes in the reservoir lid.
Tap the rim of the pot with a wood block or rubber mallet, to seat the pot evenly on the reservoir lid.
IMPORTANT: Make sure the pot is firmly seated into the lid, and not crooked, before continuing. First pot must be flush with lid to support Tower and prevent leaking.
Tower Garden Assembly - Reservoir Tub Lid And First Growing Pot - Part 2
Using a long-handled Phillips screwdriver, screw the pot into the reservoir lid, using four #8 x ¾” Phillips head sheet metal screws provided. Install all four screws loosely at first. Next, doublecheck that the pot is still seated firmly and level on the reservoir lid. The screws can then be tightened the rest of the way.
IMPORTANT: Do not install the steel screws extremely tight. Doing so may strip the receiving holes in the plastic reservoir lid.
3. Tower Garden Assembly – Reservoir Tub
In order for your Tower Farm to operate properly, make sure each reservoir tub is on a level surface.
Tower Garden Assembly - Reservoir Tub Part 1
Tower Garden Assembly - Reservoir Tub Part 2
NOTE: If your Tower Farm did NOT include drain valves, please skip to Step 4.
Locate the white elbow and “greenback” drain valve. Wrap the threads of the plastic valve with Teflon tape. Thread the ” white elbow onto the male threaded end of the greenback valve. Make connection as tight as possible by hand, but also make sure that the green hub of the valve points in the opposite direction from the bend of the elbow when finished.
Tower Garden Assembly - Reservoir Tub Part 3
Wrap the threads of the blue tube with Teflon tape, and insert the taped end of the tube into the ⅞” hole drilled for the drain valve. Thread the assembled drain valve onto the taped threads of the blue tube . You may need to hold the black hexagonal swivel collar with a pair of pliers. Care must be taken when starting, to avoid cross-threading, which will damage the parts. Hand-tighten only. The assembly should fit snugly in the hole, but not too tight.
4. Tower Garden Assembly — Installing Stainless Steel Support Rods
Tower Garden Assembly — Installing Stainless Steel Support Rods Part 1
Tower Garden Assembly — Installing Stainless Steel Support Rods Part 2
Tower Garden Assembly — Installing Stainless Steel Support Rods Part 3
Turn the assembly on its side and place another ¼” stainless steel washer on both the steel rods, where they protrude from the bottom of the reservoir lid.
Then install another pair of wingnuts.
NOTE: When tightening each wingnut, use your other hand to hold the wingnut inside the grow pot and prevent it from turning. The nuts should be tightened as much as possible by hand.
5. Tower Garden Assembly — Grow Pots
Tower Garden Assembly — Grow Pots Part 1
Get another grow pot for the second tier of the tower, and locate the pair of holes marked “B” inside the pot.
Thread the rods through these two holes, as shown at left. Slide the grow pot over the rods to connect with the pot at the bottom.
Be sure the notches at the joints between pots are lined up and seated properly. Then tap down firmly on the center stem of the pot with a wood block, so the pot fully seats with the one beneath it. Continue stacking grow pots until all the pots have been installed. Firmly seat each pot section by tapping down on the center stem before proceeding to the next pot.
Alternate between holes “A” and “B” as you continue to stack each pot. The third grow pot utilizes holes marked “A”, and the fourth pot utilizes holes marked “B”. The sequence continues in this way, with “odd-numbered” pots utilizing the holes marked “A” and the “even-numbered” pots utilizing the holes marked “B”.
Tower Garden Assembly — Grow Pots Part 2
If your tower has more than five pots, place the next pot on your tower and thread 2 stainless steel extension rods onto the top threads of the 37” rods. Install 1 more pot.
(Repeat the steps in the paragraph above if your tower will be nine pots tall.)
A Tower Farm can be configured with up to 13 pots. Note that the number of pots you can use may be limited by the size of the submersible pumps you purchased with your Tower Farm.
Tower Garden Assembly — Grow Pots Part 3
Once all of your grow pots are in place, install the shower cap. Push down firmly on the center stem to seat it onto the top growing pot. Tap on the center stem with a wood block to make sure the shower cap is firmly seated.
Before proceeding further, check the alignment of all the pots in the tower. Notice that the bottom tabs of each pot fit into the planting ports of the pot below it. Make sure none of the pots are misaligned. Install the last two wingnuts, with washers.
NOTE: Do NOT overtighten as this may crack the shower cap.
6. Tower Garden Assembly — Final Steps
Tower Garden Assembly — Final Steps Part 1
If included, fit a net pot into each planting port, with the large lip of the net pot resting on the outside rim of each planting port. With your fingers, firmly push down on the bottom of each net pot until the small lip snaps into place, as shown in the photo below.
NOTE: If the net pot is not pushed all the way in, the rock wool cube will not receive water and the new seedling, in turn, will not receive moisture.
Tower Garden Assembly — Final Steps Part 2
Tower Garden Assembly — Final Steps Part 3
After assembly is completed, reach into the rectangular access port, and adjust the position of the pump. The submersible pump should seat squarely on the base of the tub, as shown in the photo below.
IMPORTANT: After installation, if the reservoir tub lid is rotated, make sure to always turn it clockwise. If turned counter-clockwise, the blue supply tubing may become disconnected.
7. Tower Garden Electrical Connections and Securing Reservoir Lid
Tower Garden Electrical Connections and Securing Reservoir Lid Part 1
Tower Garden Electrical Connections and Securing Reservoir Lid Part 2
If your Tower Farm will be outdoors, you should review maximum local wind speeds, and determine what height is safe for your location. It will also be necessary to take the steps described below.
Locate the small two small holes spaced 180 degrees apart in the reservoir lid, and line them up with the two matching holes in the reservoir tub.
8. Tork 20 amp Electrical Timer Setup for Tower Garden
Tork 20 amp Electrical Timer Setup for Tower Garden Part 1
The timer(s) provided with your Tower Farm needs to be set for the proper timing cycle. The ideal timing cycle depends upon the type of crop you are growing and the ambient temperature.
Each metal tab on the timer dial turns the timer on for 30 seconds when pushed outward. The timer runs on a 30 minute cycle, so there are 60 tabs to set.
Normally, a 3 minute on / 12 minute off timing cycle works best (six tabs pushed outward, 24 tabs pushed inward, six tabs pushed outward, 24 tabs pushed inward).
Under very warm conditions, a 4 minute on / 11 minute off cycle may work better (eight tabs pushed outward, 22 tabs pushed inward, eight tabs pushed outward, 22 tabs pushed inward).
Note that both programs total 30 minutes, which is the time it takes for the timer dial to make one rotation.
The outlet side of the timer has three 3-prong receptacles, as indicated in the photo below.
NOTE: The maximum load each timer can handle is 20 RMS amps. It is best to keep the electrical load under 20 amps. The following pump specs will help you determine safe maximum loads:
• Each model AAPW800 pump (supplied with towers up to 11 pots high) draws 0.72 RMS amps.
• Each model AAPW1000 pump (supplied with 13-pot Tower Gardens®) draws 1.1 RMS amps.
IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION:
1. Do not allow male or female electrical power connectors to rest on the ground.
2. Follow local electrical and safety codes when installing electrical equipment.
3. Follow the safety recommendations included with all electrical components of your system.
10. Aero-Doser II System Installation for Tower Garden
Aero-Doser II System Installation for Tower Garden Part 1
Aero-Doser II System Installation for Tower Garden Part 2
Aero-Doser II System Installation for Tower Garden Part 3
Suction Tube Inlet:
Unscrew the black end cap from the bottom of each Dosatron unit. A small red plastic cap can then be seen covering the suction tube inlet. Remove the red cap.
Slide the black end cap onto the clear suction tube (green arrow on photo). Slide the suction tube up onto the inlet as far as it will go (red arrow on photo).
Aero-Doser II System Installation for Tower Garden Part 4
Aero-Doser II System Installation for Tower Garden Part 5
Suction Tube Strainers:
Insert suction tube into a ” hole located near the top of the nutrient tanks labeled “A” and “B”, as shown at left. Then press the weighted suction tube strainers supplied with the system onto the end of the clear suction tubing.
When lowered into the nutrient tanks, the suction tube strainers should just be touching the bottom of the tank. The suction tube of the right-hand Dosatron unit should go into the nutrient tank labeled “A”. The suction tube of the left Dosatron should go into the nutrient tank labeled “B”.
Aero-Doser II System Installation for Tower Garden Part 6
The female hose connector (green arrow on photo) should be connected to your fresh water supply. Never use softened water, heavily chlorinated water, or very hard water, as it may damage the plants. Depending on the water source, some Tower Farm owners may need filtration or treatment systems. We recommend having the source water tested to determine suitability.
Aero-Doser II System Installation for Tower Garden Part 7
Aero-Doser II System Installation for Tower Garden Part 8
Aero-Doser Nutrient Mixing and pH Adjustment
Run your Aero-Doser system for several minutes. While it is running, bleed air from each Dosatron unit with the air relief valve on top of the Dosatron.
Fill a 5 gallon pail with the nutrient solution. The nutrient solution pH should be in the range of 5.0 to 5.5. If the pH is higher than 5.5, you can stir battery acid into the mix B drum in small increments, and repeat this process until you have achieved the desired pH. You can also use pH Down, though it is more diluted and you will need to add larger amounts.
Setting Dosatron dilution ratios:
Refer to the instructions in your Dosatron owner’s manual for the correct adjustment procedure. Dosatron has published the chart (below) to help you know exactly how much concentrated solution is drawn from the tanks.
11. Aero-Doser Injector System Maintenance for Tower Garden
Aero-Doser Injector System Maintenance for Tower Garden Part 1
BEFORE USING: Read the Dosatron Owner’s Manual supplied with the Aero-Doser system.
ONCE A WEEK: Shut off inlet water supply to the Dosatron units (red handle on right side of photo), and relieve any water pressure on the outlet side. Then the water filter housing can be unscrewed (as shown by red arrow), allowing you to rinse the cylindrical filter screen inside. After rinsing, replace the screen and filter housing.
AIR RELIEF BUTTON: While dosers are running, press air relief button at the top of each doser until water comes out. Air trapped inside a doser will prevent it from metering out the correct amount of nutrient solution. (Note that air will enter the system any time it is shut down.)
ONCE A MONTH: Rinse Dosatron units by injecting clear water through the injection hose for a few minutes.
ONCE A YEAR: Replace Dosatron seals for maintenance, or more often if necessary.
• If you will not be using the injector system for an extended time, drain both Dosatron injectors, clean them, and protect from freezing temperatures.
• Return Dosatron units to a Dosatron service center every 3-4 years for complete evaluation and maintenance. This allows you to receive a free evaluation of the state of your units.
• Preventative maintenance procedures are detailed in the Dosatron Owner’s Manual supplied with the unit.
• Use proper protection and follow precautions when disassembling injector; it will be full of water and concentrated Mineral Blend (especially in the stem area).
Protective gloves, eyewear, and aprons are recommended.
12. Gravity Feed Tank Installation and Maintenance for Tower Garden
Gravity Feed Tank Installation and Maintenance for Tower Garden Part 1
Gravity Feed Tank Installation and Maintenance for Tower Garden Part 2
OUTLET: Attach white tubing to the barb fittings on the manifold (red arrow in photo). (Note that your gravity tank may be equipped with one or more barbed fitting.)
TANK MAINTENANCE: If the tank is kept covered, very little debris will get inside. To help prevent clogging of the reservoir float valves, a screen filter is mounted between the tank and manifold. Before using the gravity feed tank for the first time, it should be filled with clean water. The water will be used to flush out the irrigation tubing to remove debris.
INLET: A female garden hose adapter is located at inlet of tank, indicated by blue arrow in photo at left. Attach garden hose from supply side of the Aero-Doser system.
STAND: A stand is not supplied with the Gravity Feed Tank. Stacked concrete blocks make a good stand. Make sure they support the bottom of the tank evenly. The height of the stack of blocks should be 24 to 32 inches to ensure sufficient gravity flow to the nutrient reservoirs.
WHEN UNATTENDED: If your Tower Farm is unattended during the night, the supply valves in the irrigation lines can be closed at day’s end, and then re-opened first thing in the morning. This procedure can prevent the loss of the stock nutrient solution if there is an irrigation line break during the night hours. This procedure is optional, and only considered if a grower/owner deems it necessary.
Gravity Feed Tank Installation and Maintenance for Tower Garden Part 3
We recommend checking the filter monthly—or on an as-needed basis—to be sure the filter is clean. To clean the filter, shut off inlet water supply to gravity tank, and drain tank. Thoroughly wash and bleach the tank. Then the water filter housing (see red arrow in photo below) can be unscrewed, allowing you to rinse the cylindrical filter screen inside. After rinsing, replace the screen and filter housing.
After each growing season, or prior to storage, each tank should be cleaned with bleach water and then triple rinsed with water.
13. Gravity Tank Float Valve Adjustment for Tower Garden
Gravity Tank Float Valve Adjustment for Tower Garden Part 1
Nutrient solution enters the tank here (red arrow at top of picture).
FLOAT VALVE: As the gravity tank empties, the weighted float travels down the nylon cord until it hits the bottom stop. The valve then opens immediately to give a full flow.
The valve now runs at full flow, and the weighted float rises until it hits the upper float stop. This lifts the arm and the valve shuts off.
Gravity Tank Float Valve Adjustment for Tower Garden Part 2
FLOAT VALVE ADJUSTMENT: The photo below shows the view from top when the plastic cover is removed. The hose supplying nutrients to the tank is connected to the female inlet .
When a gravity tank is shipped, the position of the upper stop and the length of the nylon cord have been checked and adjusted. The upper float stop should be positioned just below the float arm, and the bottom weight should be about an inch above the bottom of the tank.
If the weight is touching the bottom of the tank, the nylon cord may need to be knotted a little shorter to increase the clearance below the weight.
14. Irrigation Line Setup for Tower Garden
Irrigation Line Setup for Tower Garden Part 1
To set up your Tower Farm’s white poly nutrient supply line(s), uncoil a length of white poly tubing and lay it in between the staggered double-row arrangement of nutrient reservoirs (photo belwo) (or alongside a singlerow arrangement, on the same side as the electrical connections for the submersible pumps).
NOTE: Avoid kinking white poly nutrient supply line.
The end of each white poly nutrient supply line should be terminated with a green and black valve, so the lines can be drained / flushed for maintenance.
Irrigation Line Setup for Tower Garden Part 2
The inlet of each white poly nutrient supply line must be connected to a male barb adapter on the supply manifold. The supply manifold at the outlet of the gravity feed tank is pictured at left (photo below).
NOTE: Your supply manifold may have a different number of gray barbed outlet fittings than the one pictured.
Each row’s supply tube is attached to a black and green inlet valve by pushing it onto the valve as far as it will go.
Irrigation Line Setup for Tower Garden Part 3
Using the yellow plastic pointed “key” punch supplied, punch a hole in the top of the white poly nutrient supply line, next to each reservoir tub, where the ” adapter for the float valve sticks out of the reservoir tub (photo below).
The correct punching procedure is to twist the punch as you push it into the tubing.
Irrigation Line Setup for Tower Garden Part 4
Irrigation Line Setup for Tower Garden Part 5
Locate a supply tube assembly. Grip the valve firmly and push it into the hole in the white poly nutrient supply line (photo below).
While pushing, twist the valve back and forth slightly and make sure it is centered on the punched hole. Be sure it is upright and perpendicular to the white poly nutrient supply line.
Once the hole is sufficiently stretched, the valve can be pushed in as far as the flat plastic “stop”. A slight tug on the valve will confirm that it is pushed in fully and locked in place by the barb.
Irrigation Line Setup for Tower Garden Part 6
Sometimes a hole may get punched in the wrong place on your white poly nutrient supply line. An example is shown at left (photo below), where the original hole was punched too far to the right of the reservoir tub.
Use a “goof plug” to plug the “bad” hole, then punch another hole in the correct place. Goof plugs have two barb sizes, as shown in the detail image at left. Use the smaller barb if it will seal the hole without leakage of nutrient solution.
Irrigation Line Setup for Tower Garden Part 7
Irrigation Line Setup for Tower Garden Part 8
The photo below shows a partial row of reservoir tubs connected to the supply tubes and the white poly nutrient supply line.
Normally, the small valves that are inserted into the white poly nutrient supply line are left on. If you need to do any kind of maintenance or cleaning on a single tower, you can turn its supply valve off by rotating it a quarter turn.
After doing so, the supply tubing assembly can be detached from the plastic socket adapter, and the tower’s pump can be unplugged. Then you can do the cleaning or maintenance required on the tower.
Irrigation Line Setup for Tower Garden Part 9
Before using the gravity feed tank for the first time, fill the tank with fresh tap water.
Open the green and black drain valve at the end of each white poly nutrient supply line, and allow enough water to flow out to insure that any debris in the white poly nutrient supply line is flushed from the system. The end of each white poly nutrient supply line should be terminated with a plastic ball valve (see photo below). This will allow for periodic flushing of the white poly nutrient supply line.
15. Filling Reservoirs With Mineral Blend for Tower Garden
Filling Reservoirs With Mineral Blend for Tower Garden Part 1
Each reservoir tub will hold approximately 15 to 20 gallons of water.
The Gravity Feed System, in conjunction with the automatic refill float valves and the irrigation lines, will automatically maintain the correct level of nutrient solution in each reservoir. Refer to the operating
instructions for the Gravity Feed System for more detailed information.
NOTE: Full strength nutrient solution may only be required during the cooler season. During the warmer season, half strength nutrient solution is more than adequate.
16. Submersible Pumps for Tower Garden
Submersible Pumps for Tower Garden Part 1
Plug in the pumps and check to see that the nutrient solution is flowing out of the top of each tower properly.
Some Tower Gardens’ submersible pumps are equipped with an adjustable flow rate dial, such as the one pictured below This dial is useful, as the flow rate out of the shower cap is affected by altitude and the height of the tower. Turning the dial counter-clockwise opens the flow rate to maximum, and turning the dial clockwise reduces the flow rate to minimum. Be sure to set your flow rate so that the nutrient solution does not touch the shower cap lid. If it does, you may have potential leakage around the shower cap area.
Once your reservoirs are filled with nutrient solution which is adjusted to the correct pH range, the access port lids and shower cap lids can be firmly pushed into place. This step prevents algae and debris from contaminating the reservoirs.
17. Maintaining Your Tower Farm
Submersible Pumps for Tower Garden Part 1
◼︎ Check the nutrient solution level in your reservoir tubs on a regular basis.
◼︎ Check the pH twice a week using the pH Test Kit or a commercial pH meter. Yellowing leaves are an indication that your pH has drifted out of the recommended range.
◼︎ If you have a three head dosing system, pH is adjusted by changing the dilution ratio on the last Dosatron unit in the system.
◼︎ If you have a two head dosing system, pH is lowered by adding small amounts of diluted acid to the “Solution B” container.
◼︎ If you do not have a dosing system, the pH of the system is manually adjusted by adding pH adjustment solution to the gravity feed tank .
◼︎ When adding pH adjuster solution or sulfuric acid solution to your nutrient solution, add sparingly, a little at a time, then test pH. Repeat application, then test, until desired pH is achieved.
◼︎ The recommended pH for most plants is above 5.0 and below 7.0. Aim for a pH of 5.5, which will lengthen your time between pH adjustments.
◼︎ Keep the shower cap holes clean and free from debris. You can use a toothpick to clean the holes.
◼︎ Keep roots away from the submersible pump in each reservoir. Make sure that the pump is located to the side of the reservoir and not directly underneath the tower. You can trim any plant roots that may be dangling down into the reservoir.
◼︎ Keep cool water (85 degrees or less) in the reservoirs. One method to keep the water cool is to
place a styrofoam circle underneath the reservoir and cover the gravity tank with reflective, insulated wrap.
◼︎ Large or climbing plants, such as tomatoes, peppers, green beans, etc., should be maintained as a compact plant or trained up on strings or trellises.
◼︎ Good sunlight is very important for optimal growth of each plant. Keep this in mind when pruning and training the plants in your Tower Farm.
◼︎ The reservoir tubs should be drained and refilled with fresh nutrient solution every three to six weeks, depending upon your local water quality and your crops.
◼︎ After the completion of a growing/harvesting cycle, the procedure on the next page may be followed.
18. Cleaning The Tower Farm As Needed For a New Crop
Submersible Pumps for Tower Garden Part 1
◼︎ If your reservoirs are equipped with individual supply valves, the supply valve on the tower should be shut off, and the supply tube should be detached from the inlet of the reservoir float valve.
◼︎ Open the drain valve at the side of the reservoir tub, and turn on the submersible pump. Run until nutrient solution stops coming out of the drain tube, then unplug the pump.
◼︎ Remove any remaining plants from the Tower Farm by pulling the net pots from the planting ports.
◼︎ Disassemble the tower sections, starting at the top pot. The bottom pot does not need to be removed from the reservoir lid.
◼︎ Clean and save net pots for future use. Some net pots may break, or cannot be separated from the plant roots. Replacement net pots can be ordered by emailing email@example.com.
◼︎ Unscrew the blue swivel hose from the reservoir lid.
◼︎ Clean the pump filter by removing the pump cover to gain access to the foam filter. Clean with water to remove debris.
◼︎ Place the shower cap, grow pots, lids, and the submersible pump into the reservoir or a large deep sink, and fill with warm soapy water.
◼︎ Allow the tower components to sit in the soapy water for 30 minutes, and then clean with water and a sponge.
◼︎ Dial’s Soft Scrub® with Bleach Cleanser is a good product to use for removing plant stains or discoloration on grow pots and other components.
Troubleshooting Part 1
LOW OR NO WATER IN “SHOWER CAP”:
◼︎ Make sure pump is plugged in, and that the nutrient solution level is higher than the pump.
◼︎ Make sure your ground fault circuit interrupter or circuit breaker is not tripped, and that the pump is receiving electrical power.
◼︎ Check for a kink in the blue swivel hose, and make sure the hose connections in the reservoir tub are secure.
◼︎ Clean the pump by removing the pump cover to gain access to the foam filter. Flush with water to remove debris, then reassemble pump and verify that it is working properly.
◼︎ Check that the flow level on the pump is turned to maximum.
ALGAE BUILDUP IN THE RESERVOIR AND/OR SHOWER CAP:
◼︎ Light is getting into the tower. Make sure all shower cap lids are secure and tight.
WATER LEAKS FROM AROUND THE NET POT:
◼︎ The tower is not level.
◼︎ For seedlings and small plants, rotate the net pot in either direction to dislodge any object that may be causing the leak.
NUTRIENT SOLUTION IS RUNNING OUT OF THE TOP OF SHOWER CAP:
◼︎ Shower cap holes are plugged. Use a toothpick to clean the holes.
PLANTS ARE WILTING IN FULL SUN:
◼︎ During hot periods, plants can use a lot of water and the nutrients in the reservoir can sometimes become too concentrated. Drain the reservoir and add fresh nutrient solution.
THE WATERING HOLE AT THE BOTTOM OF THE GROWING POT LOCATED DIRECTLY ABOVE THE WILTING PLANT(S) IS PLUGGED.
◼︎ Disassemble the grow pots and check for debris in the watering holes in the bottom of the pots.
PLANTS RECEIVE SUFFICIENT AMOUNTS OF FRESH NUTRIENT SOLUTION, BUT GROWTH IS SLOWED, LEAVES ARE BEGINNING TO WILT, AND/OR LEAVES APPEAR “BURNED”:
◼︎ Check to see if pH is lower than 4.5. If so, raise the pH of the solution by adding pH Up.
LEAVES LOOK YELLOW:
◼︎ Check to see if pH level of nutrient solution is 7.0 or higher. If so, increase the amount of acid mixed into the nutrient solution.
◼︎ Insufficient nutrients have been added to reservoir. Add nutrients as recommended.
20. General Guidelines for Tower Farm Location
General Guidelines for Tower Farm Location
Full sun or high light level for a minimum of 8 to 10 hours is a requirement if you desire highly productive food crops. If you are in a location with intense summer heat, it can be helpful to have some shade, starting mid-afternoon into the evening.
Choose a location for your Tower Farm that meets these requirements. Vegetable crops can grow at lower light levels; however, they are less productive as the percentage of shade increases. Many flowers and ornamental crops do fine under shade all day.
21. Seeding and Transplanting for Tower Garden
Seeding and Transplanting for Tower Garden Part 1
Seeding and Transplanting for Tower Garden Part 2
Seeding and Transplanting for Tower Garden Part 3
If using vermiculite, cover seeds as shown in photo at left. For smaller seeds, like lettuce, only fill the hole half full with vermiculite. This will keep just enough moisture around the seed for good germination. Gently sprinkle a little water over each hole to wet the vermiculite.
When you’re done seeding, re-wet the rock wool cubes. Do not use softened water. If possible, use filtered water without chlorine.
Seeding and Transplanting for Tower Garden Part 4
If it’s a warmer time of year, place your seeding trays on your propagation bench in a semi-shaded area.
If it’s a cooler time of year, locate your propagation bench where it is sunny.
Photo below at left shows seeds just emerging.
After the seeds have sprouted, ensure they are located in a full sun area once all danger of frost has passed. You can add diluted Mineral Blend solution every other day in place of fresh water.
After 1–3 weeks, depending upon the crop and the ambient temperature, you should have healthy seedlings with a good root system growing from your rockwool cubes. At this point, your seedlings are ready for transplanting into your towers.
Seeding and Transplanting for Tower Garden Part 5
Photo below shows gourmet lettuce seedlings ready to be planted into the tower.
Separate the individual rock wool cube, using care not to damage the roots. Place one seedling cube inside each net pot on the Tower Garden®, gently pressing the seedling cube in until it touches the base of the net pot. WARNING: If the rockwool cube is not touching the base of the net pot, the seedlings will not receive water.
Seeding and Transplanting for Tower Garden Part 6
Photo Below shows 7 day old seeded flats on a propagation table. Don’t let your seedlings dry out.
Typically, they should be watered twice a day with plain water. Adjust watering frequency as needed for your growing environment.
Three days after sprouting, a half strength mix of Mineral Blend should be used to water the seedlings once every other day; the rest of the time, continue using plain water for moistening the seedling cubes.
If conditions warrant, consider using Johnny’s Rootshield #9436. This will help protect against root pathogens.