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Archive for October, 2008

Aerogarden.org.uk – Tomato Plant Troubleshooting

October 22nd, 2008

Having problems with your tomatoes not flowering?

Following these steps should ensure that your plants will produce beautiful tomatoes, and will help improve the quality and quantity of any yield.

First, consider how long your plants been growing.  It can be anywhere between 8 – 12 weeks before the plants produce fruit, and sometimes all that is required is a little patience.

Have you…

Thinned the plants?

When plants are about 1” tall, they should be thinned back to one plant per pod.  If this step has not been done, it should be.  Keep the healthiest plant in the pod and cut the others out at the base of the plant. Too many plants growing from one pod can have negative effects on the plants.

Pruned the plants at the 4-5 week period?

At about 4-5 weeks, the main stem of the plant should be cut in half.  This pruning, along with regular ongoing pruning, will keep the plants short and bushy (like a Christmas tree) instead of tall with leaves just at the top (like a palm tree).  

If the plant has not been pruned, it needs to be.  Cutting the main stem in half is not advisable for larger plants (over 6 weeks) but refer to the Tending and Harvesting Guide for pruning instructions – they still need to be pruned! Photosynthesis will take place even if there are only a few leaves on the plant, so we encourage you to prune even if there is not much there.  If all of the growth is at the top of the plant, pruning is needed to get the plant back down to a bushy size and shape.

Set the lights timer to go off at night?

Fruiting plants need complete darkness for at least 7 hours every night in order to produce fruit – this means that the lights need to be synched up to turn off at night time, and that the plants are not exposed to any artificial light during this dark period.

Instructions for setting the “on” time of your lights:

At the time you want the lights to come on, press the “Lights” button and hold it down until the LED light next to the plant selection flashes, and continue holding it until the LED light blinks faster — about 12 seconds, then immediately release the button. Your lights will now come on at this time each day. (It will take several seconds for the lights to come on.

To view a complete chart of the Timing of the Lights and Pump Cycles for the different Seed Kits, click here

OTHER FACTORS TO CONSIDER:

– Have nutrients been added at regular 2-week intervals?  If you have been adding nutrients every time the light comes on, has it been coming on every 2 weeks?  Pressing reset at any other time than just after adding nutrients will effect the nutrient timer. 

Grow Bulbs

–Tomato production will be significantly better with fresh bulbs – they should be changed roughly every 6 months for optimal plant growth.

Type of water being used

– if you live in a hard tap water area, or have been using high mineral content spring water, the pH levels in your aerogarden may be unsuitable for plant health, and could cause yellowing of the leaves or lack of fruit.

Read more on our blog here

Tobacco Mosaic Virus

– If your plant looks like it is actually dying, it may have Tobacco Mosaic Virus. This causes a mosaic pattern on leaves (and even fruit) and causes the leaves to fall off.   A plant affected by this disease will most likely not produce fruit. 

IF ALL OF THE STEPS ABOVE HAVE BEEN FOLLOWED AND THE PLANTS ARE HEALTHY BUT STILL NOT PRODUCING:

1) Rinse and refill the bowl

A Rinse-and-Refill consists of unplugging the AeroGarden, emptying all the water out of the Bowl, refilling it with fresh water, and putting in two fresh nutrient tablets. This will return nutrient and pH levels to normal if they have gotten outside of optimal range. Please click here for complete instructions on how to do a Rinse-and-Refill.

2) Prune branches back another 1” -2” and drop the lights down, if necessary.

Complete BOTH steps 12 at the same time

So, rinse and refill and prune at the same time.  Then give the plants one week to ‘recover’ and blooms should appear within the next week.  It is fine to prune during the recovery period if necessary.

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Aerogarden.org.uk – new cascading petunias and international basil seed kits

October 9th, 2008

We have been busy people in South West London, sourcing two new seed kits for all our keen aerogardeners, International Basil Seed kit and Cascading Petunias, which are an alternative to edible plants! We are proud to be the only supplier of these new seed kits in the UK.

INTERNATIONAL BASIL

The Basil seed kits produce a delicious crop for your aerogarden. As with all our seed kits, they grow at about double the speed of a ‘traditional’ garden without the mess, weeds or soil. The Basil kit contains basil from many of our European Cousins, with 7 different varieties of basil: Lemon, Napolitano, Thai and Marseilles (funnily enough from France) Genovese (Italian) and Globe and Red Rubin. These exotic new varieties of basil  mean you can take your cooking to new heights, allowing the addition of fascinating new flavours. We have found that yield is continual, and you can begin harvesting from 3 weeks for up to 4-6 months.

PETUNIAS

A seed kit the females in our office have been waiting for! The Cascading Petunia Seed Kit allows you to brighten up the home or office as Autumn approaches. The seed kit contains a multi-coloured array of Petunias which we feel sure will delight and entertain. With the approach of the change of seasons and dark winter evenings, it brings a bit of colour indoors all year long.

The seed kit contains seed pods and plant nutrients for a full season of multi-coloured petunias. Flowers bloom in just 30 days from planting, and continue to bloom for between four to six months.

This youtube clip sums up the beauty of the petunias -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HoSqVU6FwDsOurs have only been growing for a couple of weeks, but are coming along nicely, as you can see from these photos. Check back in the near future to see how they are getting along…


Cascading Petunias Seed Kit at Two and A Half Weeks

 

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