Also, when clones have rooted out, you can transplant them into a net pot and finish out the rest of the plant in the aeroponic system. Once in a net pot, grow the plant as you normally would.
To set up the aeroponic machine:
You can start seeds in an aeroponic system using a net pot, which is a basket with holes in it that is filled with clay pellets or another grow medium.
As with clones, water and nutrients in the chamber are pumped through to misters that blanket the roots of the plants. Excess moisture collects in the chamber and drains back into the reservoir to be recycled for later use.
You can get a timer for the aeroponic machine, which will mist stems at intervals. You’ll have to experiment with it to get the best results.
Clones need to get vegetative light, so 18 hours a day. Make sure to get a light that isn’t too hot, and set it up 1-2′ above the clones. T5s work great for clones.
Roots without moisture will quickly start dying, so you need to have systems in place to alert you of failures, and you need to be on hand to solve problems when they arise. Aeroponics requires close attention to detail and can be labor-intensive and time-consuming.
Aeroponics also uses much less water compared to regular soil growing as water not taken in by plants is recycled.
This growing method was first created in the first half of the 20th century as a way to study a plant’s root system. Initially created only for research, aeroponics has since become a popular way to cultivate cannabis clones and plants.
Aeroponic growing systems use a water-tight chamber that has multiple misters in it. Also known as “cloner,” you can buy these ready-made or build your own.
With aeroponics, you’ll need to keep an eye on:
In an aeroponics setup, cannabis plant roots are in full contact with oxygen at all times, helping roots thrive. Also, when nutrients are dissolved in water and directly applied, they will be more readily available for the plant to uptake.
After taking a clone of a plant, you’ll need to put a foam collar around it—which holds the clone in place—and put it in the machine. Once all clones are in the machine, turn it on, and it will start misting the bottoms of your clones.
When cloning, once clones are taken off a mother plant, a foam collar is put around each clone and then placed in the cloner. Once all clones are in the cloner, the chamber is filled with water and nutrients are added.
Although it can cut down on pests, weed plants grown aeroponically will be more prone to root rot and mold. Sometimes, aeroponic weed plants lack the complex flavors that can be found by growing in soil.
Disadvantages of aeroponic systems for weed.
Aeroponic systems usually work on a timer, misting roots at set intervals throughout the day. Because of this, power outages, broken pumps, clogged nozzles, and empty reservoirs can all derail your growing.
An aeroponic setup will also save space as plants can be placed closer together because they don’t have to fight for soil. The lack of soil also helps prevent pests.
To start growing weed with aeroponics, you’ll need to set up an aeroponic machine, also called a cloner. You can make your own or easily purchase one—check out our Buyer’s guide on cannabis cloning equipment to see various options at different price points.
To grow full plants, a planter bed is needed. To start, a seedling grown in a medium, such as a rockwool cube, needs to be placed in a net pot and a collar is then placed around the base of the stalk. This collar helps prevent mist from evaporating or molding the stalk and also protects the roots from infection and damage.
Aeroponics may take some time, effort, and skill to figure out, and may be challenging at first if you’ve never grown weed before.
Aeroponics is a method of growing marijuana plants in which roots are suspended in air inside of a chamber and sprayed with water. Aeroponics is commonly used to start cannabis clones in order to give them a healthy root system before being potted into soil or another growing medium, but can also be used to grow full plants.
Aeroponic systems are known for the quality product they produce. Applying nutrients directly to roots allows for development of large, healthy buds. Buds grown with aeroponics are known to blossom with ripe trichomes and in high yields, making for a lucrative and desirable end product.
How to grow aeroponic weed step-by-step.
Aeroponics is a great way to grow high-quality weed. It’s a little less complicated then hydroponics, and once you have the aeroponics machine setup, it’s just a matter of checking to make sure it’s still running properly.
Here’s a close up of some frosty flowers.
“Tower Garden® is a state-of-the-art vertical aeroponic growing system. It’s perfect for rooftops, patios, balconies, terraces—just about any relatively sunny place outside. Using aeroponics and our specially formulated Tower Tonic plant food, it grows almost any vegetable, herb, or flower—and many fruits—in less time than it takes in soil.”
Most varieties of Cannabis are photoperiod sensitive. It flowers according to the length of nighttime darkness it receives. Using these photoperiod varieties would be nearly impossible in the Tower Garden outside as they would get to unmanageable size very quickly. If you can control the light cycle, initiating a 12/12 light cycle from seed or cutting would work with C. indica and shorter hybrids. But for outdoor and greenhouse growing dwarf autoflowering strains are the perfect choice.
It is possible to grow your own medicinal Cannabis in many ways. Most of the time it involves complicated indoor gardens or back breaking work with soil outdoors. The Tower Garden offers an easy alternative to tradition growing methods. Here is the official what and why:
These plants go much bigger than their soil counterparts! Some were well over 24 inches tall and yielded over an ounce. 20 plants could yield well over a pound! We fell a little short of that.
I would highly recommend this system for inexperienced users or those wishing to simplify their methods. For more information about Tower Gardens and how to obtain one through me feel free to visit my website at http://sweber.towergarden.com/
This system will work for Cannabis with full sun exposure outside or even better in a greenhouse. We don’t need soil; just add water and Tower Tonic or other hydroponic nutrients. We eliminate the trouble of setting up an indoor garden and the labor of using potting soil. And that part about “almost any vegetable, herb, or flower” applies to your medicine.
And another showing flower development down the stem. Most filled out the majority of their height this way.
For our trial run with the Tower Garden we used a variety named Grasshopper. This strain typically yields around 14g per plant achieving lofty heights of 18 inches; sometimes much less, rarely a little more. Its small size makes for good stealthy plantings and working into crowded spaces. Life cycle completes in 60 days from seed to mature flowers. The flowers are frosty and have a minty earthy smell. Here are some pictures from the end of the trial.
Here you can see the reservoir lid. Tower Tonic A and B were the only nutrients used. We can see a deficiency here at the end, but the plants stayed green until the last 10 days with no signs of problem and therefore no significant impact on yield.
Here you can see planting sites on the tower. The smaller plants were planted later as replacements for males that were pulled. Using feminized seed would have eliminated the wasted space.
Disclaimer: The Cannabis pictured was grown according to local Medicinal Marijuana laws and the information contained on this website is for educational purposes only. Please obey all laws and cultivate Cannabis only where permissible by law.
Although we have never had to deal with any kind of pests when growing cannabis aeroponically, to our amazement, we did find a few slugs and snails grazing on our plants. We circumvented such problem by spraying the bottom reservoir with an organic antislug formula.
In all our comparative tests, when growing cannabis in the soil, whether testing regular feminized plants, auto-flowering strains or even clones, we only used organic seaweedbased nutrients from a Dutch manufacturing company and gave our plants optimum growing conditions at all levels: soil preparation, root space allowance, restructured water, southern Mediterranean climate, Dutch engineered seeds from our favorite suppliers, custom grow cage/trellis/netting, daily ongoing care and monitoring….
In comparison, growing marijuana in the towers is not only cheaper but also, much easier! Much less work is involved since a unique soluble nutrient solution does it all from seedling to harvest! The same nutrient mix which we use to grow tomatoes, cabbages or strawberries is used indifferently to grow cannabis: this is a miracle in itself! Not only do we use the same nutrient mix for all crops, but it is also the same mix of natural minerals which are being used when growing cannabis from start to finish!
Both options feature pros and cons, however, growing cannabis on aeroponic towers features ‘unfair’ advantages which are truly unique in this ‘controversial field of gardening’.
In comparison, when growing the same plants on our towers, we spent less than €5-to €10 per plant in nutrients and electricity…. in other terms, depending on the strain, based on our extensive comparative tests, it costs about 10 times less to use the towers in comparison to organic conventional soil gardening.
When plants appear to grow too big for the tower to remain straight, we recommend giving external support to the stem & main branches. However, even when a plant appears to grow “too much horizontally” (challenging the balance of the tower), do not bend it to point upward. In fact, when bending the stem of a large cannabis plant in an effort to straighten it so that it can grow more ‘alongside’ of the tower, it stresses the roots to the extent of killing the plant. Always let cannabis follow the growth angle it chooses and support it when necessary without bending the stems. When growing full cycle feminized plants, we recommend growing a maximum of two plants per tower. In fact, cannabis roots are massive and overly planting on one tower can clog planting sections thus not allowing an even delivery of the nutrients.
Growing cannabis the traditional way successfully involves an initial meticulous preparation of the soil; seedlings must then be given a special rooting nutrient solution for 1 – 2 weeks followed by the growth-enhancement-fertilizer-phase; nutrients are then switched over the last few weeks to a special flowering formula complemented by a budding sugar-based fertilizer administrated prior to harvest.
We also experienced slight problems with mildew which was easily put under control with the help of a natural fungicide. However, as mentioned previously, it is very important to monitor the plants closely in order to detect such potential problems in their early stage of development. We do advise you to be cautious when spraying anti-fungal products on your plants since fungicides can stain your tower. This is why we advise you to focus diligently on the plants and avoid spraying the tower as much as possible. The same applies to natural insecticides mainly when formulated with neem oil. – When germinating cannabis seeds, we experienced a much lower success rate using rockwool versus using soil (based on numerous comparative tests). With planting cannabis seeds in rockwool, not only did we notice a lower germination percentage, but this process took longer. In fact, most of the seeds planted in the soil gave seedlings ready to be transplanted within 7 to 10 days while it took at least an extra week to get the same results with rockwool… – When growing regular plants aeroponically, choose feminized seeds (we advise against sexing your plants on the towers). Also, when growing “full cycle cannabis”, it is crucial to strategize the strains properly and to choose plants which are known to give smaller plants (not smaller yield, just medium-size plants)! Sativa should go on the lower part of the tower since the plants grow taller than Indica strains.
Growing cannabis in the soil also involves watering plants at regular intervals and monitoring fungi & mildew spots as well as taking regular actions to implement a rigorous pest prevention and control.
Although the seedling process seems to be slower when using rockwool versus soil, plants grow faster when using an aeroponic tower. In fact, plants which normally take 5 to 6 months to be ready for harvest when growing in the soil can be ready as fast as 30 to 45 days earlier when grown aeroponically.
Aside from the cost-saving consideration, as mentioned previously, much less labor is involved with the towers. It is only a matter of planting the seedling in the tower and watch it grow. Of course, even when using aeroponic towers for marijuana cultivation, it is still necessary to monitor the growth of the plants closely. Growing cannabis off the ground on an aeroponic tower greatly reduces the risks of pests and fungi but does not completely eradicate such problems.
Speaking about overall expenditure costs, when growing plants in the soil, aside from the ongoing unaccounted labor involved, we spent over €50 – €100 ($60 – $120) per plant in nutrients and planting soil.
When planting cannabis in the lowest section of the tower, expect a DWC (Deep Water Culture) situation. Roots will grow in the bottom reservoir and cannot be cut (like for the root management of other plants such as chard, cabbages etc.). Trimming the roots of your cannabis plants (in an effort to protect your pump) will kill them. Although your tower is not meant to be used as a DWC system, surprisingly enough, plants growing with their roots fully submerged in the diluted nutrient solution always gave equal results (crop yield and potency) as the plants growing on the upper section of the tower.
Furthermore, in comparison, plants grown in the soil are fuller than those grown on towers and give a bigger crop yield. However, the fact that several plants can grow at the same time on one tower while delivering faster results with less labor, fewer pests, less fungi, and at a much lower cost makes aeroponic towers our favorite option to grow cannabis.