Further to our previous blog; we think it is time to give you a little more in-depth information regarding the set-up and use of the Atami Wilma range of Dripper growing systems. Wilma Dripper systems work simply via a water pump supplying nutrient/water to the growing pots which then drains through the growing medium/pot with the excess nutrient/water draining back into the nutrient tank below the growing tray to repeat the process. Any growing medium can be used in a dripper growing system but generally either coco (coir), expanded clay pebbles or soils are used. Obviously if using soil as the growing medium, you will not be growing Hydroponic plants!
Set up and use of a Wilma Dripper system is very simple (we will assume at this point that you have already cultivated your seedlings or cuttings in a suitable growing medium and to a size ready for transplanting):
1) Choose your growing medium type and fill the Wilma pots (if using soil or coco we recommend placing an inch of clay pebbles at the base of pot to aide with drainage)
2) Transplant your seedlings or cuttings into the Wilma pots full of relevant growing medium.
3) Connect dripper stakes (two types are supplied: 4mm Blue stakes for clay pebbles and Black stakes for coco or soil) to the 4mm dripper line and then connect the supply water pump to the grey plastic delivery tube. Plug your pump into an analogue or digital timer; but do not turn the pump on just yet!
4) Now fill the tank with water and add your chosen liquid plant feed at the correct dilution stated on the bottle, or for the size or age of plants to be transplanted into your Wilma system. We recommend using an EC meter for accurate monitoring/dosing of your nutrient strength.
5) When nutrients have been added to the tank, ensure that you have mixed the solution thoroughly by hand or by using a secondary pump in the tank as a circulation/mixing pump.
6) Now check the pH of your solution. We recommend using a pH meter for monitoring and dosing of pH acids to maintain as neutral a pH solution as possible, but this can also be done using a simple pH liquid test kit. Please see our FAQ section on our website for more information regarding general recommended nutrient strengths and pH levels in Hydroponics. Monitoring and adjusting of nutrient strength and pH should ideally be a daily task but this will obviously be a personal decision for some gardeners depending on how often they can access, or want to access, the grow room! As an experienced recommendation; if you want maximum results from your Hydroponic plants then make nutrient and pH monitoring/dosing a daily task.
7) Now it is time to set the timer for your supply water pump. We recommend setting the timer to switch on the supply pump for fifteen minutes every two or three hours. Although this does not seem as if your plants will be receiving much water/nutrient, this is the ideal watering/feeding schedule to encourage your plants to produce new roots and a larger root mass.
8) That’s it! ..plug your pump and timer into the socket and switch on! Your Wilma Dripper growing system is now operational and now only requires you to top-up the nutrient tank when necessary and monitor nutrient strength and pH!
There are many growing tips I have learnt over the years for the Wilma growing systems, but I wanted to keep this blog short enough to cover the set-up and use basics..so please leave a comment or a question if you would like me to continue adding information for this type of growing system!