I completed my first window farm column about a month ago. I had started the seeds about two months ago but I have lost the majority of the plants I started already. I started my seeds in rockwool cubes and when they were about an inch tall I transferred them to my window farm. I left them in the rockwool cube and set the cube in a plastic grow basket with clay pellets around the cube. Up until this week I was using tap water combined with Liquid Karma by Botanicare.
The problem I am having is that the water and nutrient formula is adjusted to the correct pH in the reservoir but as it goes through my system it slowly increases. After going through the third bottle, the pH is already too high.
After doing research here and in other forums, I made the following adjustments.
1. Removed the rock wool cubes from the system completely and boiled the clay pellets. The plants are now growing in the baskets with only clay pellets. This adjustment seems to have made a slight impact on the severity of the pH increase through the system, but not enough to keep my plants alive.
2. I switched to distilled water and started to rinse the system and replace nutrient formula every other day. Again, this only made a slight impact on the pH levels. Now the pH doesn’t increase as fast, but after 10 minutes of the system running, the pH is back up above 7.5 in the reservoir.
Thankfully that I have been able to hold onto the remaining few plants by adding a few drops of lime juice to the tank every time I get a break from work (usually about 4 times during the day) but my plants are all less than 3 inches tall and the leaves are starting to turn brown on the very tips.
The remaining plants are beans (I think these could survive nuclear war they are so resilient), two tomatoes, two peppers and three basil that haven’t yet reached 2 inches tall. I lost all of the lettuce, two varieties of peppers, and my hybrid cherry tomatoes.
Anything you can suggest to help me out would be fantastic. I feel like I am taking care of a new puppy because I can’t leave my system alone for a day!