Welcome

4 Item(s)

per page
Set Descending Direction

Lovage (Levisticum officinale) is an herbaceous, perennial plant. Native of the Mediterranean region, lovage grows wild in the mountainous districts in the south of France, in northern Greece and in the Balkans. Growing tall, the stems and leaves are a shiny green, has a hint of celery flavor and also a smell of lime when the herb is crushed. Cultivated as a sweet herb, with its roots used for medicinal purposes, its leaves can be used in salads, or to make soup of broths. The bottom of the stems can be blanched and eaten the same as celery.

This article will explain how to correctly sow lovage by means of soil propagation and hydroponically.

Growing Lovage in Soil:

Preparation:

Traditionally, out in the garden, the hardy lovage herb prefers rich, damp soil and a shady site. Before planting, it is important to consider how much space a gardener would devote to growing this herb. Lovage can grow very tall, with adult plants reaching 4-6 feet high. One large lovage plant is enough to keep a family sufficiently supplied with its fragrant leaves throughout the year while many plants create the perfect backdrop for a garden in the ground or set in planter pots.

Propagation:

Lovage grows well from seed. Start indoors 6-8 weeks before planting out at a depth of 2.5 cms in small peat pots. Seeds require on average 10-20 days for germination. Transplant after the danger of frost has passed. It is advised to transplant the seedlings again in autumn or spring to positions 2 feet (60 cms) apart. By the time the seedlings are four years old; they will have most likely reached their full size and should be spaced about 4 feet (1.2 m) apart.

Harvesting:

Lovage may be harvested after the first growing season if the plant is growing healthily. If very large, aromatic leaves are desired for flavoring, the plants must be watered especially well throughout the course of its life. If the lovage plant has enough water, plentiful cuttings can be taken from the plant a few times a year. As with most culinary herbs, the best time to do cuttings are in the morning after the morning dew has dried. Best used fresh, lovage can, however, be stored frozen in plastic bags or even dried. If only the leaves of the plant are desired, then the plant should be kept from flowering and seeding.

Lovage can successfully be dried in a cool oven, at a temperature of a little less than 200ºF (94ºC with the door left a little ajar). It is important to check the leaves often to prevent burning. Lovage can also be dried by tying cuttings in small bunches and hanging them upside down in a well-ventilated, dark room.

Lovage has also been noted as having a high amount of quercetin, a plant flavanoid said to have strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. The plant has been used medicinally for generations as it can relieve abdominal pains due to gastrointestinal gas. When consumed as a tea, lovage is also said to decrease flatulence.

Insects and Disease:

Lovage, like many leafy vegetables and herbs, is sometimes the target of leaf mining insects such as burrowing worms. Unfortunately, control of these leaf miners, even with pesticides, isn't very effective. The only thing that can be done is manually pick the affected leaves as soon as they are spotted. If the problem becomes widespread, then a cover over the crop is a good option in order to limit the flying leaf miners from leaving its eggs inside the lovage leaves.

Seed Saving Instructions:

The plant produces huge flower heads of seed. To properly dry for storage, allow the flower heads to dry on the plant. Once dried, collect the seeds and store in a cool dark place. Seed heads may also be bagged to capture ripening seed. Dry seed head can be brittle, so collect over a bowl, basket, bag or other container to collect all seeds.

Growing Lovage Hydroponically

Hydroponics and Growing Lovage

Hydroponics is a method of growing plants, like vegetables and herbs, without the use of any kind of soil. All the nutrients a plant needs while growing primarily in water are provided from a water-based nutrient solution. Anchors such as rockwool, pumice, sand or perlite are desired, so that the seedling can keep itself anchored.

The advantage of hydroponics over conventionally planning in soil is that when gardening with this method, plants can be placed close together. This in turn increases the yield in the space being used. There are also no weeds in hydroponics and normally no pests. Hydroponics, however, does more often than not cost more for the needed equipment as well as taking a little more training to learn the process as compared to the standard soil gardening technique.

Lovage can be grown hydroponically and has been noted to grow much more quickly in water than in soil. To grow lovage in this way, large amounts of equipment needn't be purchased as a small DIY hydroponic garden can easily be set up with reusable materials. This method of hydroponics is called hydroponic organics, and is currently one of the most popular methods of hydroponic growing. It allows the gardener, no matter the level of expertise, the freedom and flexibility of choosing their plant’s container, organic solution, and fertilizer (if desired) as they water the plants directly without the use of an automatic water on a timer. Hydroponics, although having the image of being a complex operation is in fact a moderately simple and inexpensive process when done on a small scale.

DIY Hydroponic Organics

  • One 2-liter soda bottle, emptied and cleaned
  • A pair of scissors
  • Heavy tape (duct tape is a good choice)
  • A Styrofoam cup
  • A pencil or screwdriver
  • Perlite
  • A lovage seedling with the soil gently cleaned from its roots
  • Hydroponic nutrient solution

Instructions

  1. Cut the top from the soda bottle. The hole should be large enough to hold the styrofoam cup. Make the cut level so that the Styrofoam cup will sit evenly in the hole.
  2. Cover the cut top of the bottle with the heavy tape. This is to keep both the styrofoam cup in place while hiding sharp edges of the plastic bottle.
  3. Using the pencil or screwdriver, poke several holes into the bottom of the cup. The holes should be large enough that the roots of the lovage plant will have a way grow through to reach the water, while the pieces of perlite do not fall through.
  4. If the seedling was started in soil, wash the roots gently before planting the seedling in the perlite. Make sure that there is no soil on the roots of the seedling. With clean roots, plant the lovage seedling into the perlite. Put enough perlite in the cup to fill it almost to the top.
  5. Follow the instructions written on the label of the hydroponic nutrient solution. Carefully mix enough hydroponic nutrient solution to fill the 2 liter bottle that the cup now sits in. Fill the bottle with enough of solution mixture so that the mixture is touching the lowering roots of the seedling within the cup. Ensure the solution does not cover all of the roots of the plant because the seedling’s roots also need access to oxygen in order to grow.
  6. Preferably, lovage does well with a relative humidity and at least six hours per day of light. This is the optimum conditions for the seedling to grow. If this cannot be adequately supplied to the seedling by natural means, grow lights and timers are also available from grow shops. These allow direct control over the amount of light the plant receives.

0 Comments | Posted in News Hydroponics Details Indoor Gardening By Charles R. Sword

If you've decided to try hydroponics gardening to grow plants indoors, you may be uncertain exactly how to begin, but don't worry, you're not alone. Many of the questions that we get at our grow shop are from new gardeners who need a little help getting started. To help get your vegetable or herb garden underway, just follow these simple steps.

1. Make sure you have all of the essential components for your hydroponics environment. You'll need grow lights and a ballast, a grow room or grow box and a hydroponics system with water filters.

2. Decide what you're going to grow! If you're not sure what to place in your hydro grow environment, check out our earlier blog post on selecting vegetables and plants for hydroponic gardening. You'll also need to decide if you intend to buy starter plants or germinate seeds. If you're going to start with seeds, continue on. For plants, skip to step 11.

3. To get your seeds started, add 1 quart of water to a large container. Be careful not to make it too hot or too cold.

4. Check the pH level of the water with a tester. You want the pH to between 5.5 and 6.5. You can use water treatment products to alter the pH, but a simple, organic way is to add drops of lemon juice gradually. If you end up with a pH below 5, add a little more water in until you're in the perfect range.

5. Soak rock wool cubes in the water for at least 1 hour. Make sure that you wear protection over your face like a surgical mask to protect your lungs from the small fibers in the cubes.

6. Shake the cubes off when you take them out of the water. Wringing them will damage them.

7. Place the seeds inside the cubes. Typically, you should put just one or two seeds for vegetables in each cube. For an herb garden, 7 to 8 seeds can be placed in each cube.

8. Use a plastic planter tray to hold the cubes. Cover with a lid and let them stay in an environment that is 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Do not use plant lights.

9. Each day check on your seeds and give them a spritz with water.

10. Once your plants are at least 2 inches tall and have at least 3 leaves, they are ready for transplanting.

11. Set up your grow room or grow box with your growing lights, the nutrients delivery system and the other components. Follow the instructions provided with your growing environment.

12. Place your seedlings or plants in perlite in growing pots.

13. Fill the hydroponics system with the liquid for nutrition, according to the directions.

14.Congratulate yourself! You're on your way to organic, hydro gardening indoors!

You can purchase many of the growing supplies that you need for your hydroponics herb garden or vegetable garden right here at the iHidroUSA grow shop.

0 Comments | Posted in News Hydroponics Details Indoor Gardening By Charles R. Sword

Edible flowers are wonderful garnishments for so many different dishes for that creative touch as well as an interesting flavor for your salads.Five star chefs love working with edible flowers for their own creative touch to some of their finest dishes. Due to their profusion of beautiful colors and shapes, your garden will be magnificent! Edible flowers also attract the wonderful world of bees, pollinating and promoting your garden's rejuvenation.

Although many gardeners only use them for decoration purposes, you would be quite surprised how tasty they can be. Nasturtiums offers a wonderful spicy or peppery flavor while repelling aphids and other garden pests as well. Their heavy vines literally kill underlying weeds, saving you some serious weeding time.

Always grow edible flowers organically because other soils and treatments can produce insects, insecticides or pesticides.

Growing Edible Flowers with a Hydroponic System:

Getting out of the garden and moving indoors for the best, organic solution for growing these edible flowers is not only a great deal of fun, but a healthy alternative.

Hydroponics do not use soil, but instead a nutrient solution that helps grow plants more quickly and produces a healthier plant. Herb gardens will fit nicely in your home, taking up very little room and offering a wonderful nutritional outcome. You place your plants in a grow box which can be either a partially enclosed system or completely enclosed system. These boxes are ideal for growing your plants during the winter months and will protect them diseases and pests while growing them in the summer months.

Grow Boxes:

A completely enclosed grow box is an excellent choice because it comes with so many features. There is a built in grow light enhancing advanced and healthy growth. You will also have a fan system for excellent ventilation for circulation of air and preventing any fungi or mold development.

Hydroponics:

The hydroponic systems water your plants with a rich nutrient solution that many growers find far above growing in soil. Some of the advanced features include their own air conditioning to prevent temperatures from increasing as well.

Grow Lights:

Grow lights are fluorescent bulbs that offer a certain amount of light for plant development. Other plant lights can be hung approximately 2" above the height of the plants in a partially enclosed grow box and should be lifted as the plants continue to grow. There are other bulb options for grow lights that are slightly more energy efficient than fluorescent bulbs.

LEDs (light emitting diodes)
High intensity lamps
Sodium vapor lamps

Grow Rooms:

Grow Rooms can be just about any size where plants are in a controlled environment. You may choose from a variety of sizes, depending on your space availability.There are many reasons why gardeners prefer to use grow rooms. In many cases, there are no other alternatives for growing various plants then indoors due to outdoor elements. As plants do very well growing with plant lights, these rooms are perfect. Keep in mind, these rooms can become quite hot, due to these lights, and therefore it is highly recommended you acquire a ventilation system such as a fan.

In order to purchase the right hydro system for your needs, you should visit your local hydroponics grow shop. If you don't have someone local who deals in hydroponic systems, you will find what you need online. You can ask questions, receive great advice and purchase all your needs in one place!

Edibles and Non-Edibles:

There are literally dozens of edible flowers to choose from, if you have never grown this variety of flower always check with professionals for what is truly edible or what could possible make you extremely ill, even causing death. Therefore it is extremely important that you know the differences.

When Serving To Others:

Also, keep in mind, just like other foods we consume, some people do not react well to these flowers or they might have an allergic reaction toward them. If you or a friend have never consumed an edible flower, it is strongly suggested to try only a tiny piece and then wait for an hour or so to see if there are any negative reactions.

Never feed these flowers to your family or friends unless you know they are Ok with it. Again, check first to make sure they won't have an adverse reaction from consuming them.

There are so many edible flowers for you to choose from and grow. Whether you are purchasing to enhance your herb garden's appearance, or to just add an accent to your favorite dishes, always check with experts before purchasing. This is for you and your family's well being as well as your friends.

So Many Varieties and Flavors:

The beautiful blue star shaped Borage blossom is a wonderful choice if you like the taste of cucumbers. They work really well in salads or as a pretty added touch to your tropical party drinks.

Try chive blossoms with your grilled fish or other favorite summer grilled dishes. How about adding a very small amount of lavender blossoms to that homemade ice cream! Just don't go overboard because lavender can be extremely potent.

For Decoration:

Even if you are not quite sold on eating flowers, you will want to include them in your herb garden designs. They are absolutely exquisite to see, adding awe to your garden. Use a little creativity when planning your hydroponic garden and include these flowers, you will not be disappointed.

0 Comments | Posted in News Hydroponics Details By Charles R. Sword
Hydro-garden,indoor-plants,Hydroponics-grow-plants,led-lights,grow-shop,grrow-room-box,herb-garden,benefits-hydroculture

Hydrogardening has become extremely popular over the past decade due to the ability of growing healthy, nourishing produce indoors. With so many products being treated with pesticides and chemicals, more people are looking for better ways to incorporate their favorite vegetables and herbs into their diets. Hydroponic gardening is the best alternative for those wanting a better produce on their table.

What Is A Hydrogarden?

A hydrogarden is a method of gardening using hydroponics. Hydroponics is a subdivision of hydroculture and method of growing plants in water instead of soil and administering a mineral nutrient solution. Hydroponics is Greek for: hydro (water) + ponos (labor).

In the 18th century, researchers discovered that plants absorb mineral nutrients in both water and soil. Soil performs as a mineral nutrient reservoir but is not an indispensable element for growing plants. It was discovered that when mineral nutrients were dissolved in water, roots were able to absorb them without soil.

It is believed that the Gardens of Babylon was one of the first hydroponic gardening techniques in the world.

Through the use of hydroponics, roots have shown faster growth and plants are developing a greater yield. It is no wonder that gardeners, both experienced and beginners, are getting more involved in hydrogardening. The labor gardeners are putting into hydrogardening is a great deal less than they experienced with outdoor gardening. They have also discovered their produce is much more flavorful with both fruits and vegetables and freshness exemplory.

Hydroponic Gardening and the Environment:

Hydroponic gardening does not use harmful pesticides or chemicals and is very environmentally friendly. Hydroponic gardening uses a great deal less water than standard outdoor gardening and you never have to worry about weeds because there is no soil involved. One major plus to hydroponic gardening is your being able to enjoy your favorite fruits and vegetables year round. There are no limitations for producing these wonderful foods in the dead of winter because everything is grown indoors within a controlled environment.

For those gourmet chefs, you will have fresh, flavorful herbs at your finger tips for those exquisite recipes for family and friends.

Say Goodbye To Tasteless Produce:

As you probably know, by the time produce are grown and shipped to your local store, most of the nutritional values and flavors are gone. Freshness is a word totally remote for what you are paying and you are paying for them, high-end!

Gardeners have known for a very long time that the foods they have grown in the gardens are far superior to foods presented at their local supermarket. With hydroponic gardens, they are discovering even higher levels of freshness and flavor. By growing hydroponic gardens, you are serving up foods that are healthier to your body with the total lack of toxins.

Going Green:

Over the past decade everyone has been talking about "going green". In many cases, everyone associates this term with recycling or buying products that have little to no added chemical processing additives. Whether it's a hand lotion, facial cream or fast foods.

Growing vegetable gardens, fruits or herb gardens is also going green. Hydroponics deals with no soil which incorporate fertilizers and dangerous chemicals. These elements are also very harmful to plants and water, causing environmental problems. Plants grown hydroponically are healthier, stronger and offer a much better yield. Hydroponic gardens are very easy to start and produce great results as well as being highly cost efficient.

What Is Urban Gardening?

If you have lived in or visited a large city, you have probably seen gardens being grown of the tops of buildings. Urban gardening is developing a garden and growing plants where actual land and soil are not available. Urban gardening also refers to plants that are grown on windowsills across the country.

Most city dwellers live in apartments or town homes and do not have access to a great deal of space to grow gardens. Hydroponics has turned that completely around and made it possible for these folks to grown their own fruits, vegetables, herbs or flowers within their own small spaces.

Large cities, including New York City, have started incorporating hydrogardening within the city for communities. This has proven to be a great way for people to come together and grow wonderful gardens within their own neighborhoods. Not only is this great for individual growers, but has helped create foods for those less fortunate who are in need of healthy foods for their families as well.

Going Organic But With A Price:

Over the years, many people are skeptical about produce in their local stores because of chemical hazards. Their only alternative has been to hunt down places that only grow organic foods. The downside is these foods can be much more expensive and if you do not know the farmer, are they really organic?

Being your own gardener will alleviate your concerns about the quality of produce you are placing on your table. Setting up your own hydrogardens, you know exactly the quality you are getting.

Learning and Sharing The Wealth:

There are many other upsides to growing hydroponic gardens including forming new friendships around your neighborhood, learning and teaching the values of hydroponic plants to your children, discovering a great long lasting hobby and sharing the abundance of your harvest.

A Neighbor In Need:

You might have a neighbor who just can't afford the high cost of produce but would definitely benefit from the gift of a hydrogarden. You can teach them the benefits and show them how to get started and let them know you are available with any questions or problems they might run into, when starting off.

Your neighbor might be elderly and weeding, dealing with soil and the overall hard work of an outdoor garden is out of the question. A hydrogarden is the perfect solution for them to enjoy fresh produce year round and be able to do it themselves.

Teach Your Children Well:

Kids are like sponges, they absorb information and new ideas faster than anyone else. Introducing a hydrogarden into their lives is a great way to teach them the importance of nature, having a healthy environment and how to eat healthy foods that they have grown themselves.

These kids could take the newly found knowledge and bring them into their classrooms as a class project or just to share with other classmates and their teachers.

Your Church and Community:

Educating your church members and pastors to the advantages of creating and growing hydroponic gardens could help out those less fortunate. Churches are always setting up food drives, canned goods, etc. What if they started growing their own fruits and vegetables to help out those with very little? Members of the church coming together and sharing their own skills specific skills is very positive. Some of these members might be quite knowledgeable in gardening and offer valuable suggestions. This is working together to make great things happen in a very positive way.

Summing It Up:

Hydroponic gardens have more benefits than can possibly be imagined. You are not using soil, so there's no need for pesticides and other dangerous chemicals. You are using less water because the water recycles. Plants grow healthier and offer a much higher yield than any other form of gardening. You will enjoy fresh, nutritional and tasty foods throughout the entire year.

On top of all the healthy reasons to start a hydroponic garden, there are many other positives springing up everywhere. These gardens can bring communities together by sharing ideas and offering assistance to those who want to learn. Family and friends will discover a whole new insight into "Going Green" and along the way, you can reach out and help others less fortunate than yourself. The gift of food, a hydroponic garden and teaching children to understand and respect the world around them is pretty powerful!
Hydroponic gardens have been around for centuries but only in the past couple of decades has the concept spread throughout the entire world. Gardeners growing healthy produce on their roof tops or in a spare room are catching on every day. Senior adults are able to grow their favorite produce easily and with little effort. Hydroponics is proving to be an important part of protecting and caring for our environment and without doubt is here to stay.

0 Comments | Posted in Hydroponics Details Indoor Gardening By Florence B. Harrell

4 Item(s)

per page
Set Descending Direction
  Loading...