I'd like to ask for some advice regarding the hydroponic system I've just built in my living room. I've attached a photo, and here is a breakdown of everything.
Indoor living room balcony window in London, facing due East. Good sun until mid afternoon and I've added 6 x 64000K 30watt CFL bulbs to boost light. Currently, the lights turn on at 3am and off at 8am, where Mother Nature takes over (at least for the summer).
POTS AND MEDIUM
12cm IKEA plant pots in modified IKEA plant pot stand with net pots inside, filled with clay pebbles.
There are two low tanks with a water pump in each, plumbed in to two top tanks. I did this to allow two variations of nutrients to be used. Each top tank then flows into 6 pots and back into the low tanks through black aquarium tubing. When the pump activates, about 3 litres move from the low tanks into the top tanks in 30 seconds. With all valves open, it takes 4 minutes for the water to drain through all the pots. This happens every hour but is obviously controllable. Also, each column of 3 pots has a flow controller above it, so I could have a drier column if needed.
I'm currently using vegetative growth solution, mixed as per instruction, with ph down to bring it to about 6. I don't have a EC meter yet, one is on order.
After a week of planting, the tomatoes, mint, sage and chives are doing ok, but the basil, parsley, rocket and spinach have stalled.
My questions are....
1) How often should I water? Should I group some dry-loving plants together and reduce the water to that column? If so, which plants?
2) How long shall I have the lights on?
3) What would you recommend I plant? Culinary herbs and salad would be my choice, but pretty flowers wouldn't go a miss.
Any other hints or tips. â€¨â€¨I'm asking this because although I'm pleased with the build of it, and confident it'll work (it also looks really beautiful) I have ZERO gardening experience! So any advice would be gratefully receivedâ€¨â€¨.
Thanks for reading.