pumps and misters help please

pepperdogApril 25, 2008

i just have a vague idea of a system in my head and when i went on the web to check it out there were alot of people who talked all about microns and whatnot and it seemed that no one could give me a simple answer as to what is up.

so to cut to the chase, what mister is the best and what pump do i need to go with it.

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Misters are rated at gallons per hour and so are pumps.
One of the main factors is, how many misters you have and how many
gallons per hour are needed to feed each mister.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2008 at 3:08PM
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Microns has to do with how fine the water droplets are that the misters produce. If i remember correctly, something around 5 is required so the plants will still get enough oxygen with constant misting.
Unfortunately your question does not have a simple answer as there are multiple variables affecting the answer.
Dripguys answer is partly correct, but you also need to know how much pressure is required for the mister to operate properly. so lets begin with:
how many square feet do you want to mist?
Will this area be in long skinny runs (like a gutter) or basically one large flat area (like a sheet of plywood)?
what is the height from the misting surface (the level at which you want to produce mist at) to the bottom of your reservoir (this is where the pump will sit)?
Personally, I've used rainbird sprayers (they're not misters)with about a 200gph pump in a 5 gallon bucket(only about 18" of head). all connected together with 1/2" diameter PVC and had good results. But, I needed a timer because the spray, when left on continually, wouldn't allow enough oxygen to the roots.
That system is good for one to three plants, depending on plant size.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2008 at 3:23PM
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yea, i was hoping to use a tote which has dimensions of 1.5 feet deep by 1.5 feet wide and 2.5 feet long. which would contain about three plants.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 3:46PM
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also could i just use a humidifier?

    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 3:50PM
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Humidifier will add heat to plant roots that you don't want.

Find something on fluid mechanics on the web and read it.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 8:27AM
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alright so i have nixed the humidifier can anyone give me some help on the second part of my master plan?

    Bookmark   June 3, 2008 at 9:23PM
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Have you read anything on fluid mechanics yet or are you still hoping this system will spring full-grown from the head of Zeus?

You're going to have to put in some time learning about hydroponics.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2008 at 10:47PM
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well, don't overcomplicate it either. Its a pump. Theres only a few models you can buy affordably, and all those were designed to move water at least 3 feet up for some pond or aqaurium. Just buy anything with a 150GPH (gallons per hour) which is very similar to your tap sink. Any less then you're not going to be able to move water 2 feet off the ground.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2008 at 2:37PM
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Well, just as a start, misters will use a lot more pressure than 150 gph pumps will supply........

Back to fluid mechanics.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2008 at 9:51AM
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chuck(Z10,SW FL)

Just for the moment, consider using the tote box in a slightly different way. No pumps would be needed if you let the nutrient flow up to your plants be acomplished through a process sometimes called wicking. Here, the nutrients are pulled up to the roots via capillary action. The tote box is divided into a growing chamber, and a nutrient chamber. The cheapest growing medium is a potting mix, not a potting soil. Some people have used sawdust in past years with good results. I have used baked clay, but presently I am using a potting mix that is mostly peat moss. I use a material used to block weed groweh called landscape fabric to form an inner liner to suspend the growing medium above the nutrients with a small portion of the bottom extending into the nutrients. This is where the nutrients are pulled up into the growing area and the roots. I have about 15 of these now with tomatoes, peppers, and egg plant growing. If you want to get into a system that is off the grid, try this one. I use a commercial hydroponic product made by southern agriculture to feed my plants, but because the growing medium is organic, you can get away with using some non water soluable nutrients. If you are intrested in the construction details, follow the link below. chuck

Here is a link that might be useful: off the grid grower

    Bookmark   June 9, 2008 at 3:59AM
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pepper dog. U must be using or attempting a "aero"ponics setup. As far as using misters and "nebulizers" There aren't really any that are that much better than the others. I particulary like the aeroponics "mister heads" setup myself, it's more efficient. One thing to keep in mind though. I have read that if your mist is too fine that the roots may not be encouraged to "grow" enough. The mist will be so fine that the roots will actually grow excessive root hair. The catch is the mist actually traps or incooperates oxygen in with it so it's like a two in one shot. So too fine of a mist is bad and too big droplets could hurt you. I believe that the way the mist is actually measured or calculated is in microns or something. I will admit that Im not sure how all of that works yet but try using one like You would see on a mister fan or something like that. OH yeah keep a close eye on your nozzle heads they can build up with caked up nutrient or calcium buildup from hard water, if your using well water. Hope I could help

    Bookmark   June 9, 2008 at 3:09PM
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I saw a compact aeroponics system that seemed really ideal to me. The link is buried in my massive backlog of things to add to my Encyclopedia, so I don't know where it is at the moment. I'll come back and add it when I find it.

Anyway, the construction is simple so I'll just explain it here. Get a basic storage tote like a Rubbermaid... 18 gallon range or bigger. Get one of those pop-up lawn sprinkler heads and a submersible pump that will run a fair number of gph more than the sprinkler requires, just to be sure.

Now figure out the plumbing necessary to attach the sprinkler directly to the output of the pump so that when the pump is sitting on the bottom of the storage tote the sprinkler head is aimed straight up. You want to be able to fill the tote about half-full of water and have the sprinkler sticking out above that level.

Then cut holes in the lid to fit net pots or neoprene collars - whatever plant support system you have planned.

Important: Paint the whole tote with black plastic paint or cover it with metal tape (something to block the light 100% - white paint or duct tape doesn't work).

Run the pump part-time (like 15 min on, 15 off, something like that depending on how your plants like it.)

I haven't built one myself so I don't have any insight into how well it works, but it appears a solid design and the guy who built it seemed to get good results.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2008 at 5:22PM
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That's what I did except I used a 5 gallon paint bucket and didn't waste the effort painting/covering my tank. it was a white bucket and inside, but I never had any real algae problems.
I sold that system to a friend for, I believe $25. And most of that was to cover replacing the pump.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2008 at 8:28PM
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The plastic in buckets tends to be thicker than the Rubbermaid storage bins, but it can still allow algae growth.

Sometimes none grows even under ideal conditions, sometimes it seems to grow no matter what you do.

I'd recommend going as light-proof as possible just to stack the odds in your favor.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2008 at 10:25PM
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keep it simple i used a tote for my first system .
this is what i did. 5 in net pods and clay pellets i bought a 650 gph waterfall pump and a regular lawn sprinkler all the fittings and tubing to connect them
put a drain in the bottom back into the resivior simple and put the sprinkler inside the tote hooked to the pump presto buying misters and filters pumps ect can get expensive and problematic. algea? change the solution weekly or bi-weekly to avoid problems keep track of how much nutriant used and water ect ect and watch plants grow adjust accordingly

    Bookmark   June 15, 2008 at 5:23PM
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