Very technical crops, hydroponics, greenhouses, those grown with artificial light or with very tight doses of fertilizer require very specific elements.
Something as simple as a pot or container for support and substrate can have unimaginable variants for such precise crops. We are going to see the importance of the container in which we are going to plant it and the types of pots that we can see in stores like Eurogrow.
Plant height to pot volume ratio
The pot to plant height ratio is important for the proper root development of almost all plants. There are plants that require a large volume of substrate to have significant root expansion and other plants such as cacti or Crassulaceae that prefer smaller pots.
for the cultivation of cannabis sativa As an example of a highly technical grow, a general (very general) rule of 1 liter of pot capacity for every 4-5 cm of plant height is used. Other plants have other proportions. By applying a simple rule of three:
- Plant up to 15 cm: 4 liters of pot
- Plant of about 30cm: 7.5 liters of pot
- Plant of about 60 cm: 15 liters of pot
- Plant of about 100 cm: About 25 liters of pot
It’s a bit indicative. In fact, you won’t find pots in the exact sizes we give you, but they will be very similar.
Drain. Something essential to avoid flooding the substrate
It is not just this culture that is important. Apart from the species adapted to waterlogged environments (bank plants, swamps, etc.), the rest of the plants need good drainage. The moment we use a “watertight” container or without the possibility of excess water escaping, we will saturate the substrate most of the time. For this reason, it is necessary that there are holes in the bottom that prevent water from stagnating in the growing pot.
emission of secondary roots
The root system must be healthy, with space, not waterlogged and the plant must emit a large amount of root surface in contact with the substrate to absorb nutrients. One of the ways to achieve this is to promote the emission of secondary roots.
All tips result in a healthy root system that relies on space, drainage and the possibility of root development to increase the contact surface with the substrate and thus capture the maximum of nutrients.
Let’s start with the basics. The normative pot
Plastic pots of all sizes, colors and shapes. All have the advantage of being cheap, reusable for years and years and being completely waterproof, the water lasts longer in the substrate. This can have advantages (less frequency of irrigation) and disadvantages (possibility of waterlogging).
ANDcolor is important depending on whether we want an outdoor or indoor culture.
- Outdoor cultivation: Preferably in a white pot so that the solar radiation bounces off the white color and that the substrate is not overheated, in addition to drying much earlier by evaporation.
- Indoor cultivation: It doesn’t matter a bit more to us, but it can be perfectly black.
Root System Pruner Pots
Just as you hear it. These are pots with holes all over the wall of the container. The roots grow when they are in dark (underground), moist environments and with the right amount of aeration. As soon as a root touches the outside air, it stops growing (air pruning) and the emission of secondary roots is forced, governing the substrate and obtaining a greater contact surface.
It is a variant of the previous ones, in fabric (fabric) being this very porous and therefore having great advantages that we list below:
- Being porous, it performs the function of aerial pruning. As soon as a root wants to “get out of the pot” it will not be able to and will force the emission of secondary roots.
- Allows greater aeration of the substrate. In very hot climates, it may be advantageous if the substrate does not overheat, as it allows more air to pass through and absorbs less heat, and even more so if the fabric is white.
- They can be washed in a hot washing machine and reused in another crop without problem (this is a way to sterilize it if the plant has suffered from a disease caused by bacteria, fungi, nematodes, etc.
Grow bags. Comfort vs Pollution
It is not our favorite system but we put it because it also exists. They are disposable plastic. They are very comfortable because they are disposable, but we already know that plastic is polluting if it is not properly recycled. In greenhouse crops they are used a lot, but for some crops we do not recommend it. There are more durable options (all of the above).
Mesh pots for aeroponics and hydroponics
They are very specific for hydroponic crops, for example, where the water with the exact fertilizers goes in continuous circulation in contact with the roots. Also in aeroponics where nutrients are atomized and sprayed into the root environment of the crop. NASA uses cultures of this type for its research on culture in zero gravity.