Once you have your plants potted or in the ground, the fun of garden care begins. As your plant starts to veg, there are a number of responsibilities you will have when it comes to taking care of your garden or grow room.
How do you take care of a garden?
From watering your plants, to pruning, to increasing air circulation and ventilation, there will rarely be a day where you don't do something in your grow room or garden to care for your plants. Taking care of your garden isn't something that is black and white. Rather, you will need to carefully inspect your plants regularly, and determine exactly what needs to be done based on what you see.
For example, if you notice your plants are looking super skinny and lanky, you'll need to prune and train them to grow a bit bushier (unless of course you want tall, low yielding plants). On the flip side, maybe your plants are incredibly bushy and your fan leaves are huge, covering many of your growth sites. In that case, you'll need to defoliate the plants.
Some tasks will need to be done daily, others weekly, and some hopefully never. Regardless of what is going on in your garden or grow room, at Hydrobuilder we carry all the garden care tools and devices you could ever need. We will explain what each one of these tools/devices does, and how you should use it. We'll also share our favorite garden care tips with you.
Monitoring and testing your garden or grow room
One of the most important things you will need to do in your garden is monitor the conditions in your environment. There are a number of conditions that you need to pay attention to, including:
- pH levels
- PPM, EC, TDS
Using a pH meter in the garden
Monitoring your garden and grow room conditions with a pH meter is really important. Every single time you water or feed your plants, you need to first test your pH. There is a relationship between nutrients and pH, and if pH is not within a specific range, your plant won't be able to absorb nutrients.
In soil, keep your pH between 6-6.8. In a soilless garden, pH should be 5.5-6.5. Monitoring pH with a pH meter is easy, and a necessary daily task when you feed plants.
If you have a large grow and testing pH multiple times for multiple reservoirs becomes a hassle, you may want to automate your garden. You can use a nutrient and pH doser. This will deliver the perfect ratio of nutrients and pH to your plants, without you doing a thing! If you are a commercial grower, this is an absolute necessity.
Monitoring temperature and humidity with a hygrometer
Temperature and humidity are also very important, as these have an ideal range as well. If your temperature drops too low, plant growth will halt. If it gets too high, the same will occur. In the same way, excess humidity and not enough moisture each have problems of their own as well.
Temperature should be kept between 70-80 degrees, and humidity between 40-50%. Using a hygrometer allows you to check both simultaneously!
Using an EC, PPM, TDS meter in the garden
Measuring for PPM, EC, and TDS ensures your nutrient solution is dosed correctly. Again, using a nutrient and pH doser will make this easier, but we also carry meters specifically for testing these!
Taking care of your garden or grow room with one device
To truly automate your garden and cut down on supplies and meters in the grow room, use a combination meter. These allow you to monitor everything at once!
If you want to learn more about these tests and monitors, stop by our full soil meters and pH testing category!
Protecting your garden or grow room some insects and diseases
Another really important aspect of garden care is preventing insects and diseases, or worst case, eradicating them. If you are growing outdoors, this will be especially difficult. There isn't as much you can do outside, since you are essentially growing in the pests' home. Some common pests you will find in your garden include aphids, mites, gnats, and whiteflies.
You will also need to watch for diseases to form on or around your plants. The most common problems are powdery mildew, mold, bud rot, and root rot.
For more information on how to control insects and diseases, check out our full insect and disease category.
Pruning and trimming plants in your garden or grow room
As your plant grows, you need to prune and train it according to how you want it to grow. What really makes gardening fun is the ability to control how your plants grow.
There are different techniques for growing tall, lanky plants, and for short, bushy plants. Your growing space will dictate how you want your plants to grow.
Pruning is also important to encourage more bud sites, and to prevent the dominant shoot from taking all the energy. You can learn more about pruning to increase yield in our blog.
Regardless of how you want your plants to grow, we have the tools you need here at Hydrobuilder! Visit our full, trimming scissors and pruning shear category.
Training your plants with trellis and plant ties
Pruning in itself is a form of plant training, and is as easy as it gets. But, if you are interested in more advanced methods of plant training, you will need to use trellis netting to set up a support system for branches. This way, your plant has help supporting the big, heavy buds you hope to cultivate.
Using a trellis system also encourages a wider canopy, resulting in higher yields! If you want to learn more about trellis and why you should use it, check out our full trellis and plant support section.
Why you need a garden sprayer
There will likely come a time where you will need to spray the foliage of your plant, either to feed it or ward off insects or fungi. You do not want to be unprepared when you notice spider mites or powdery mildew have overrun your garden!
Foliar feeding is a great option when plants become root bound, or to increase moisture levels if you are experiencing humidity issues.
Regardless of the purpose, make sure you have the best garden sprayer on hand. We carry a wide variety, ranging from manual hand sprayers to electric atomizer sprayers. If you want to learn more about spraying your garden, visit our full garden sprayers and foggers section.
Cleaning and disinfecting the garden or grow room
Disinfecting is a more serious chore. This involves a deep clean of hydroponic system components, clearing water lines, and ridding the entire room of any bacteria or unwanted growth. This is done less regularly but is arguably more important than standard cleaning.
We carry all the disinfecting and cleaning supplies you may need for a grow room, including fungicides and algaecides specifically for hydroponic systems! Stop by and see all the cleaners and disinfectants we carry to learn more!
Irrigating your outdoor garden can be much more difficult than irrigating one indoors, believe it or not. If you only have a couple of plants, hand-feeding/watering is easy.
If you want to learn more about this, check out our outdoor irrigation category!
Don’t get caught unprepared this growing season. We carry everything you could need for garden care, including all grow room accessories, here at Hydrobuilder. Our garden care supplies will help take work off your plate while improving your plants health, and generating heavier yields!