A lot has been said about how easy or hard it is to grow cannabis. While most of the hard part lies in myths and conceptions, it would also be essential to debunk some of the details and show you that it is not as a rollercoaster as it gets thought to be.
Let's take an example. The Deep Water Culture (DWC) technique gets seen as the most challenging approach among most wannabe growers. However, as this article will show, it isn't as described to be.
What is Deep Water Culture?
Well, the DWC is a cannabis growing technique that involves the usage of a water tub instead of a growing medium.
Basically, the DWC set-up involves suspending cannabis plants over the water tub, while ensuring the roots hang into the feeding area rich in oxygen. The basic principle here is in ensuring that the plants get sufficient nutrients, oxygen, and ample space to support the root system.
Necessarily, you will have the full control to the plants and give them the necessary conditions during the first growth phase – the vegetative stage.
Secondly, you won’t have to worry about damaging the roots during watering as overwatering or even underwatering is unheard of while using the deep water culture technique.
Tips for designing a DWC system
Understandably, you may have become curious to try the DWC technique. However, that dream won't be a reality if you don't design your own DWC.
That said, here are the five easy-to-follow steps to design a DWC system.
1. Prepare the reservoir
As mentioned above, plants have to be suspended over a tub of water. And this is where the reservoir will come handy.
The light shouldn't reach the roots, and therefore, thick and black containers made of plastic should be used to bar lights from causing any problems.
Each reservoir should be up to 15 liters as that is the volume needed by a cannabis plant to complete all its phases of growth.
If you can, endeavor to use a reservoir for a single plant. Remember that is the best way to ensure that that plant gets adequate nutrients.
Nonetheless, should you opt to do more than a single strain in a reservoir, ensure that they are the same strains from the same parental figures.
On top of the reservoir, it would be necessary to close the reservoir entirely, perhaps using a lid. The lid should be robust enough to hold a pot of a cannabis plant and even the weight of a fully matured flowering grass plant.
If you, instead plant multiple plants, a large reservoir should be prepared at the center, and then get used to connecting to smaller reservoirs. That way, hydroponic nutrients will get transferred to the smaller reservoirs from the central reservoir.
2. Use hydroponic net pots
In DWC, the used pots play a critical role in guaranteeing the well-being of the pot plants gotten. It isn’t a must that you buy them, though.
If you are tad creative, you can use hand tools and bore holes in plastic containers and come up with improvised net pots.
Nonetheless, you ought to be extremely careful when making the holes for the root system. You can burn the holes using a soldering iron to give them some fantastic comfort to the plants.
Fill in the hydroponic net pots using inert mediums like perlite or clay pellets, provided the chosen medium has some incredible water retention.
When it comes to germinating the seeds, use a starter plug or Rockwool. After sprouting, take two days and transplant the seed into the hydroponic net pot and place the container on the lid of the reservoir. At this point, use a drip or water the seedling until the roots reach the water in the reservoir. You will stop watering at this point since the plant will explode.
3. Observe the necessities for growth
The temperatures in a DWC system should range from 17°C to 20°C. No more, No less. This is the exact reason why this technique is best done indoors, as it is easy to control the temperature ranges.
If for any reason, the temperatures go lower than 17°C, you can use an aquarium heater to up it to the optimum. If one the other, it heats above average, then an aquarium chiller or a frozen bottle would help in lowering the temperature.
Secondly, the pH is a critical factor to consider. Be sure to ensure that it ranges anywhere between 5.2 and 6.2.
If it goes down or up that range, nutrient absorption will be problematic, and thus, causing a not so significant growth of your ganja plants. Necessarily, keep on checking the pH values as much as you can to ensure that nothing goes southwards.
Always ensure that you run enzymes in the reservoir to prevent the building up of waste materials or unused nutrients.
4. Ensure proper airflow
Aeration of your pot strain is essential. How you are going to ensure airflow into the reservoir is essential.
Oxygen is vital in a DWC system, and it can only be upped best when the reservoir gets sufficient air.
That said, having an air pump is the ultimate solution to ensure that air enters the reservoir thoroughly. Failure to have one can cause the death of your plant! Thankfully, air pumps are affordable, and when maintained properly, they can serve you well for long.
5. Be careful with strain selection
While many strains can do well in a DWC system, it would be essential to go for those that do well indoors. Mainly, the chosen strain should be in apposition to tolerate to pH changes, high humidity levels, and somewhat dense nutrient concentration.
Necessarily, we would recommend that you grow Indica strains as they do well in those uncertainties. Nonetheless, that is not to say that Sativas won’t give robust yields. It is just a matter of preference since Sativas tend to be taller and training them in DWC could be an uphill task.
In giving you a clearer picture on how to select the DWC strains, you can be sure to filter the results and be left with those that can do well in indoor hydroponics, are hardy, and Indica dominant.
Be sure to some filtered DWC-preferred strain results here.
What is your experience with setting up your DWC system? Do you love it or hate it?