DECOR & DIY, DIY, Garden

DIY: Hydroponic vertical garden – how to plant seedlings

As promised, here is my post for how to plant seedlings in our DIY hydroponic vertical garden. The beauty of hydroponics means that no soil is needed; the roots of the plants are fed by nutrients added to the constantly running water.

Recently, Checkers (a local grocery store) ran a ‘Checkers Little Garden’ promo, where you received a box of seedlings for every R 150.00 spent (equivalent to about USD 11.00 at current exchange rates). Needless to say, we grew a small collection of these and a few of were now ready to plant.

Getting ready to plant Checkers seedlings; How to plant seedlings DIY hydroponic garden - Sawdust and High Heels
Kids getting ready to plant some of our Checkers Little Garden seedlings! As you can see, we did manage to kill some of them πŸ™ Luckily we still had some that were big enough to plant!

Since not all of the seedlings would be suitable for the small pots, we decided to supplement our supply with some lettuce and green pepper seedlings from our local garden centre as well. Lettuce has previously done well in this set-up, let’s hope that the peppers will do well too!

Also, because we are lazy and doing this ‘on the cheap’, we decided to not go with the suggested pebbles to support the plants (since there is no soil to do this). Hubs cut supports out of an old foam puzzle instead!

Foam Cut outs:

  1. Trace the size of the pot out on your foam piece

    Cut out foam for DIY hydroponic vertical garden; How to plant seedlings DIY hydroponic garden - Sawdust and High Heels
    Trace out the size of the top of the pot
  2. Cut along the traced shape (we used a pair of scissors for this)

    Cut out foam for DIY hydroponic vertical garden 2; How to plant seedlings DIY hydroponic garden - Sawdust and High Heels
    Cut the shape out
  3. Use your scissors to make a slit half way through the circle

    Cut out foam for DIY hydroponic vertical garden 3; How to plant seedlings DIY hydroponic garden - Sawdust and High Heels
    Cut a slit in the foam to the middle of the circle.
  4. Cut small slits from the centre of the circle; this will create the hole in which the plant will sit

    Cut out foam for DIY hydroponic vertical garden 4; How to plant seedlings DIY hydroponic garden - Sawdust and High Heels
    Cut small slits from the middle of the circle – this will create the hole that will support the plant.
  5. Snip the pieces between the slits to make the hole

    Cut out foam for DIY hydroponic vertical garden 6; How to plant seedlings DIY hydroponic garden - Sawdust and High Heels
    Forming the hole that will support the plant.
  6. This is what the final product should look like

    Cut out foam for DIY hydroponic vertical garden 7; How to plant seedlings DIY hydroponic garden - Sawdust and High Heels
    This is what is going to support the plant.

Now we get to the fun part – the planting!

You will need a bucket of water for this part.

  1. Remove the seedling from the packaging

    Wash roots off for planting DIY hydroponic vertical garden; How to plant seedlings DIY hydroponic garden - Sawdust and High Heels
    Getting ready to wash the roots of the lettuce seedling
  2. Wash the roots off in your bucket of water; be careful not to damage the roots during this process

    Wash roots for for planting DIY hydroponic vertical garden 2; How to plant seedlings DIY hydroponic garden - Sawdust and High Heels
    Wash as much soil from the roots as you can; be careful not the damage them in the process.
  3. Gently place your foam cut-out around your plant

    Using foam to support the plant DIY hydroponic vertical garden; How to plant seedlings DIY hydroponic garden - Sawdust and High Heels
    Gently put the foam around the seedling
  4. Place your seedling in the pot

    Potted plant for DIY hydroponic vertical garden; How to plant seedlings DIY hydroponic garden - Sawdust and High Heels
    The potted plant; see how the foam supports it?
  5. Put your potted plant into your garden, it’s as easy as that! πŸ˜€
    Mustard plant done DIY hydroponic vertical garden; How to plant seedlings DIY hydroponic garden - Sawdust and High Heels
    One of the final projects – a Checkers Little Garden mustard plant

     

  6. The next step if probably the most important – adding nutrients to the water! You will need to do this approximately once a week (maybe more in blooming season). It’s easy though, just follow the instructions on the food bottle!
    Plants need to be fed weekly DIY hydroponic vertical garden; How to plant seedlings DIY hydroponic garden - Sawdust and High Heels
    Don’t forget to feed your babies!

    The kids had such a blast with this little project; they can’t wait for the next one! I couldn’t resist showing some extra photos of them πŸ˜‰

    Getting ready to plant; How to plant seedlings DIY hydroponic garden - Sawdust and High Heels
    Getting ready to plant – this one needs to be done when we get to the backyard.
    Getting ready to plant 2; How to plant seedlings DIY hydroponic garden - Sawdust and High Heels
    I’ve got the chives, Mom!
    Washing the roots off to plant in DIY hydroponic vertical garden; How to plant seedlings DIY hydroponic garden - Sawdust and High Heels
    Wash, wash, wash!
    Potted seedlings looking happy in their new home; How to plant seedlings DIY hydroponic garden - Sawdust and High Heels
    The potted seedlings looking happy in their new home

    That’s it, really – so simple once you have the system up and running. The kids love it as well, they have so much fun when they get to mess about in the garden!

    Tell me what you think, I’d love to hear your opinions!

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