NFT gro-tanks are often growers first 'dip of the toe' into the world of hydroponics. Indeed they used to be the fastest selling system hands down, and for very good reason. Other methods have now taken over in popularity but theres still a die hard following for this simple, huge yielding hydroponics system and it is definately having a bit of a resurgence of use in recent years.
NFT stands for 'Nutrient Film Technique', it essentially involves the nutrient flowing over a large surface area at a very shallow depth (film) down a very slight gradient. The roots grow within this film of nutrient aided by a root membrane know as 'spreader mat'.
NFT plants are usually established in either the 3" or 4" Grodan Delta rockwool blocks and when well rooted and established they are transferred onto the NFT tray with a supply of nutrient-rich hydroponic solution flowing under the blocks, the roots soon grow out from the blocks into the root matting and develop a thick layer of roots all over the NFT tray, the tray is covered with a top tray or 'corriboard' to stop light, letting the roots flourish in the dark. For tips on establishing plants in rockwool blocks check out our blog post Establishing & Transplanting Young Plants.
These roots have access to the perfect amount of nutrient and air resulting in growth rates that are some of the fastest you will ever experience. the absence of growing media means less things to get into your grow space and less things to get rid of, no more lugging pots of waste coco away etc. Expect big yields in record time if you master this method of growing.
The most important thing to watch out for when using this system is the water temperature, you need to keep the temperature below 21 degrees celsius. Above this temperature the amount of oxygen that can be held in the water is greatly reduced and anaerobic conditions will occur, if this happens root diseases such as Pythium can flourish and destroy your plants very quickly.
In grow rooms that run between 25-28 degrees it doesnt take long for an NFT tank to heat up well above 21 degrees. The best way to avoid this is to use a Nutrient Chiller, a pump in your tank pumps water through the chiller and back to your tank keeping the water to the temperature you set it to.
3 sizes available:
NFT gro-tank 205 - 71cm x 40cm capacity 20 litres
The smallest of the gro-tanks can be used for up to 2 plants but we recommend using this as a single plant system. compact design fits in the smallest of grow tents.
NFT gro-tank 424 - 112cm x 50cm capacity 45 litres
This size Gro tank is ideal for 2 -4 plants and one or 2 fit perfectly inside a 1.2m grow tent.
NFT gro-tank 604 - 158cm x 52cm capacity 60 litres
This size is ideal for 3 - 6 plants.
All of these gro-tanks can be attached to a separate reservoir or header tank by using the PLANT!T auto top up kits allowing multiple systems to be filled and maintained via one large reservoir or header tanks.
* DO NOT USE THIS SYSTEM WITHOUT A WATER COOLING METHOD.
* Install a nutrient thermometer on each tank so you can see if the temperature is getting too high.
* The best method to prepare your plants before placing them onto the NFT tray is to air-prune them in rockwool blocks, please come in or give us a call for a full description or demonstration of this method.
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