Problems with Root Rot?
Have you tried cloning your plants in an aero cloner and haven’t had much luck? Is the stem slimy and the roots rotting? Most of the time the reason is because you have made a common mistake. If this is your first time using an aeroponic cloner make sure you follow these guidelines.
The first thing that you need to do is make sure your cloner is completely clean, down to the pump’s spinner. If you have to reuse the neoprene collars make you they have been cleaned very very thoroughly. Try to use food grade cleaners but bleach can be used if you have nothing else. If bleach is used make sure all residues have been rinsed out. If you think you’ve rinsed it out enough, do it one more time. There could be a few reasons why you are getting root rot.
Water Temperature – A lot of gardeners don’t realize how warm their water actually is. Just because it’s sitting on your basement floor in the summer doesn’t mean it is cool. Make sure your water temperature isn’t too high. If you stick your finger in the water and it feels luke warm it is probably too warm. Have you ever swam in 70 degree water? 70 degrees feels cool on skin. With summer time the water temps can get pretty high. Keep it around 70-75 and you should be good. Bacteria growth takes off in higher temps. For winter make sure you don’t have the aero cloner on a basement floor. A lot of times nothing will happen and gardeners wonder what’s wrong. The cold water has stunted the cutting and it quits growing roots. You wouldn’t want to take a cold shower in the winter so why would your plant?
pH – Your pH level needs to be between 5.5-5.8 for aeroponics. This isn’t soil or hydro, a pH of 6 is getting too high. If you don’t have a digital pH meter you might want to get one. Hanna makes a really good Digital Waterproof pH/EC/TDS Tester that runs about $150. Make sure you pH test after adding anything into the water.
Preparing your cloner – Some people do use a clearn or clone solution in their water but you don’t necessarily have to. However, you can add 3% hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) to your water to help prevent nastiness. Add about 1 tablespoon (the measuring kind, not the one you eat with) of H2O2 per gallon of water.
Just follow these tips and you will be good to go!