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Dissolved oxygen directly affects root health, product quality DWC canna

Discussion in 'Hydroponics Discussion' started by Henry, May 3, 2018.

  1. Henry

    Henry Auto Warrior

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  2. Muddy

    Muddy Proud deplorable!

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    I've talked extensively with Current Culture about aeration levels in their RDWC systems. While RDWC is a different from DWC the basics still apply. They recommend that air be supplied at a rate between .75 to 1.5 liters or air per minute per gallon of solution at water temperature between 65 - 68.. The air pump that comes with their UC8 systems provides .92 lpm/g. They were recommending what they called 'super charging', upping the lpm/g to 1.5. However, they have backed away from that mainly because it's more difficult to maintain stable pH and ppm at higher concentrations. Granted, nutrient uptake is more efficient but at the risk of system instability. In fact, they have removed all information about super charging from their web site. Something to consider before going overboard with higher levels of aeration.
     
  3. Henry

    Henry Auto Warrior

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    I really like the Current Culture system and like you, I have also talked with the several salesmen at CC regarding oxygenation and found them to be clearly and totally fixated on electric air pumps, ambient air and mechanical aeration. Actually, ambient air (mechanical aeration) has serious aerobic oxygenating limitations in many fields when optimal, sustained oxygenation in needed acutely and over months when optimal continuous safe oxygenation a major goal for intensive DWC, RDWC canna growers, especially when growing at altitude in the mountains.

    Feel free to ask any welder, jeweler, intensive fish farmer, live fish transporter (Federal, State, Private fish hatchery, aircraft pilot, MD, PA, RN, LPN (nurse), EMT or professional football ball player breathing pure O2 on the sidelines in Denver, they all use and depend on pure O2 gas when ambient air fails to provide minimal safe concentrations of O2, that is a fact and common practice… why’s that? Well, that’s because ambient air will not insure enough oxygen to prevent cellular oxygen deficit (low oxygen). Insufficient oxygenation (low O2) is a major health issue for all aerobic plants, animals and microbes. But, fungi love low oxygen environments and thrive there. No disrespect for the Current Culture salesmen’s opinions or confusion between mechanical ambient aeration and oxygenation. Their job is to sell their product and selling is what they do best.

    Consider this: All RDWC, DWC cannabis rhizome biomass and microbial colony biomass increase proportionally toward plant and microbial colony maturity the aerobic oxygen demand during several months of the grow cycle also increases proportionally. The eco system required more oxygen (DO) and ambient is not a good substitutes for oxygen as air contains 80% nitrogen. If the total oxygen demand is not continuously provided for by the grower, an oxygen deficit will develop.

    Low DO’s are often a shock discovery and always a surprise for the grower when recognized (sickly, dying, slimy, stinking decaying roots and beneficial microbes in DWC, RDWC canna grows). Many RDWC canna growers (even growers using the CC system, worry about low DO and root rot every day and always “hope” that ambient air will provide enough oxygen to prevent low DO insults and the pitiful results of a low-O2 crisis.

    A little techy, but you might find this enlightening: Understanding Dissolved Oxygen, by Kurt Becker, https://www.growertalks.com/Article/?articleid=22058
     
  4. Muddy

    Muddy Proud deplorable!

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    First off, I didn't talk to their salesman, I talked to their techs, who obviously still have a vested interest in promoting their products but come at problems from a tech rather than sales angle. So I give their opinions a bit more creedance than I would a salesman's. I've found them willing to discuss both sides of issues, rather than focusing just on those related to CC systems. While I won't argue that providing pure O2 would be beneficial, it's very impractical in many situations and I suspect, not a consideration for most home growers.

    If you're talked to CC you must be aware that they strongly recommend running a sterile system, which negates most issues involved in maintaining a microbial colony and the associated problems with rot and other root issues. I only ran into problems on my first grow when I tried to run organic using AN nutrients. After that I switched to House & Garden, and now Cultured Solutions, and have had no root issues. Sterile is really the best way to run these systems and is far easier and less costly. Low DO and root rot is not something I worry about and certainly not on a daily basis. While I do not yet have a DO meter, it is on my wish list. Until then I will continue on as I have and will enjoy the excellent results I get running their base system. I do plan to super charge my system in the near future, which will increase my DO. Even though CC has backed away from super charging, I feel that my experience with these systems has reached a level where I can successfully run this way without the potential associated problems.
     
  5. Henry

    Henry Auto Warrior

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    That’s Interesting, sort of techy,,, In your opinion, what is “supercharging” your system going to change/improve/do?

    How do you plan to ”supercharge” your system?

    And at what DO Saturation do you consider your system to actually be “supercharged?”

    You will need some way to test your system to confirm or deny “supercharging,” right?

    If you don’t have or don’t want to waste a lot of money buying a DO meter, you might consider this DO testing option:

    Dissolved Oxygen (DO) Test Kit – Only $0.40 per test

    Salifert O2 Test Kit – 50 DO Tests - $19.99 FREE SHIPPING TOO http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/prod_display.cfm?pcatid=16555&cmpid=03cseYY&ref=6194&subref=AA&cmpid=PLA_G_6194&gclid=Cj0KEQiAsrnCBRCTs7nqwrm6pcYBEiQAcQSznOTuM2_ltCSX1xoR9NCPpBBx2OGhKMP8Qgsk4aN4tRoaAkd_8P8HAQ

    Test Freshwater and Salt Water DO

    DO Range 2 ppm -14 ppm
     
  6. Muddy

    Muddy Proud deplorable!

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    I'm going to add a second air pump and increase my lpm/g rate from the standard .9 to upward of the max 1.5 that CC recommends. I'm also going to replace the epicenter air manifold with an 8" air stone. The stock manifold has become quite clogged over time and in spite of repeated attempts to reopen the holes, the majority of them are still clogged. I've already replaced the air manifolds in the grow buckets with two 4" stones in each bucket. I also aerate my top off rez and premix and aerate my system changes. Eventually I'll also need to upgrade my chiller. I'm using a 1/10 hp one now and it just keeps the temps in a good range. I'd like to run a consistent 68 degrees but sometimes it will spike up to 71. I'm also not able to drop the temp as low as I'd like at the end of the grow to simulate the end of the outdoor growing season. I'd like to gradually, over the last week of the grow and the flush, to drop the temp down to 60.

    In the end what I hope to accomplish is to raise the DO level and reduce the amount of nutrients required while increasing their availability to the plants. I've discussed this with others who have taken this route and they claim a significant reduction in nutrient utilization coupled with better plant growth.

    Thanks for the information on the DO test kit. I'll check it out. Agreed, $20 bucks is a lot better than what they want for the meters.
     
  7. Henry

    Henry Auto Warrior

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  8. Henry

    Henry Auto Warrior

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    Muddy – Do you or anyone else here have any idea what “Supercharging” actually mean here? That’s so ambiguous/confusing at best. A definition maybe?
     
  9. Muddy

    Muddy Proud deplorable!

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    I had never heard of super charging until I read about it on the Current Culture web site. They explained it as just upping the liters per minute per gallon of air being supplied. If memory serves me, anything between 1.25 - 1.50 lpm/g was considered super charging. As I said, they backed away from recommending it because of problems related to pH stability. They probably deal with a lot of pH stability issues so eliminating one source probably makes their jobs easier. They also published a feeding schedule for super charged systems which has also been removed. Again, if my memory is correct the amount of nutrients needed is reduced by 40 or 50%. So the cost of an extra air pump would be paid for by the savings on nutes. I'm going to give it a try in the near future and will post what I find.
     

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