SIP method feeding with hydroponics?

Discussion in 'Hydroponic Growing' started by Tbone Shuffle, Aug 27, 2017.

  1. I got into some research on sub irrigated planters and all the homemade versions out there. They seem really interesting and I'm wondering if these methods might work for hydroponics.

    I have an idea I wanted to run by some experienced hydro growers and see if they see problems with it.

    What I want to do is buy a large hydro tray the size of my tent floor space and fill the bottom with plastic perforated irrigation pipe with the ends capped off by landscaping fabric. You run a fill pipe for feeding into one of the pipes in the bottom of the tray and put an overflow spout/fill indicator a few inches down from the top lip of the tray. I then fill the tray with perlite burying the pipes until I have a nice level surface on the top and a few solid 4"-6" or more of perlite on top of the pipes.

    Then you cover the top with black landscaping fabric to prevent growth in the perlite. You cut a circular hole in the landscaping fabric for each plant you have in fabric pots and nestle it down in the perlite.

    This causes the plant to feed in a wicking fashion. It's been shown to increase growth by keeping the medium at just the right level of moisture to allow aeration and feeding at all times. This method also conserves feed water by reducing evaporation and runoff.

    As far as I know this is used mostly for outdoor or greenhouse growing in soil. I'm just wondering if there's problems applying this technique to hydro? Am I overthinking it with the pipes? Could the same thing be done with just perlite? It's similar to a flood and drain tray method I guess.
  2. #2 Tbone Shuffle, Aug 27, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2017
    I could already guess that maybe I don't want stagnant hydro solution sitting in the pipes on the bottom. That may require airstones. If I went with all perlite and no pipe though I may be able to get away with no airstones which would be a huge plus IMO. They won't be necessary for plant root aeration. I've also read about problems with this method and tomatoes because the roots will punch through to the bottom layer of water. They solved this by just running heavy landscaping fabric across the top with no holes and the plant will still wick/feed through it but the roots can't get through.

    I'm torn between promix and coco for the actual medium in the pot. I'm guessing that this would be more simple and possibly higher performing then a drip system with a more consistent wetting of the medium with the wick method.

    What I was thinking is topping the tray off daily but including a drain valve to do a water change once a week.
  3. #3 Lucky Luke, Aug 28, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2017
    Ive heard of people using a hempy mix in the sips instead of soil.

    I was going to try it this grow but didnt. I have two small commercial soil sips going atm in the tent. These are from Decor.

    Pic a couple of weeks old. Pineapple express #2
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  4. There is a aussie grower who does something similer to what your saying but its not a sip per say.

    He has a tray the size of his tent floor that has a drain. Covers the entire tray with hydraton, plants in that with support stays and drip feeds the hydraton. Grows one massive plant.
  5. Here is a pic of it here. #24044
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  6. Thanks for the input. I was hoping for more discussion. I just quickly looked though it. I'm not a rollup member so I can't look at full size pics. It seemed like the SIP was with soil? I'd love to try it with hydro.
  7. I was looking at setting up a drip system but the SIP setups got me curious as to why I couldn't wick/drip feed from the bottom. Everyone that uses this method with soil loves it. I'm trying to figure out a hydro alternative.
  8. if u want more input then become a rollitup member..much more activity for growers. Its hydraton. in that pic link i posted
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  9. When u say hydro alternitive im a bit confused.
    My sip above has soil as the media but is just water or nutes in the resivour.
    Did you mean no soil and something like a perlite and vermiculite mix as the media with the reservoir at the bottom?
  10. Coco/perlite or promix is my preferred media. Soil is what is feeding in most SIP methods. I want "soil-less". Hydro media and feed method but SIP delivery.
  11. Cool.
    Im interested in this to using perlite and vermiculite as the medium. Hempy i think they call the mix.

    I dont see why it wouldnt work as long as the wick will wick. I recon ill give one a go next veg. Please link me in any experiment you try.
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  12. Yes that would work well...
    You want to make the perlite all the way up to the plastic which will minimize the chance of damping off..
    So make sure the plastic is laying on the perlite, then split you an X for each plant, and should work good.

    I approach the aeration of the medium the opposite way (from the top)..
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  13. I was more concerned with keeping the hydro solution aerated. The plant should get all it wants right through the loose medium and fabric pot. I guess as long as I don't run the perforated pipe layer on the bottom I shouldn't need to aerate?
  14. Yeah, you should not have to aerate the solution, but in my personal opinion it would help in the long run, and if I was doing this project, I'd add a couple/few air stones in the solution.

    But no, you shouldn't "have to" add air to the solution..

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