Setting Up SNAP Hydroponics - How to Set Up SNAP Hydroponics

Setting up your own SNAP Hydroponics system is easy without too much technical jargon involved. When you setup your own hydroponics using the SNAP (Simple Nutrient Addition Program) hydroponics method, make sure that you've gathered all your materials in one setting. Things you'll need include

Plan Ahead

It is important to plan ahead where you're going to put up your SNAP hydroponics setup. Preferably, put your system in an area where the earliest sunlight can be obtained.

You may want to put your growing boxes about the level of your hips using stands or tables. While this is not important in growing your own hydroponic vegetables, it will prevent unnecessary trunk bending, thereby, preventing unwanted straining on your back.

Setting Up the SNAP Hydroponics System

  1. Plastic-lined fruit container
    with about 10 liters of water
    Place growing box on a level surface.

  2. Remove lid on growing box and fill the plastic-lined container with about 10 liters of water. However, if your styrofoam container is smaller, just fill it to about one inch below the brim.
    • If you are using other containers, other than the styrofoam fruit containers, check whether the styrofoam cups are submerged in the water to about 1/2 inch deep. If not, add more water or remove excess water until the desired level of is reached.

  3. SNAP Hydroponics
    Growing box
    Check for any leaks before adding the SNAP solutions.

  4. Add 25 ml of SNAP A nutrient solution to each box. Stir well.

  5. Add 25 ml of SNAB B nutrient solution. Stir again.

  6. Cover with the prepared lid (with punched holes).
    Grow box with seedling plugs

  7. Place the prepared seedling plugs into the holes of the container lid/cover. Make sure that all of the "plugs" fit into the holes evenly.

There you go, a few minutes to setup your very own SNAP hydroponics system. You don't have to do anything after setup, just wait till harvest time. Well, there are still some little things to do to ensure that you get a bountiful harvest.

Things you need to do after setup

  • Visit your hydroponics setup early morning to check for any insect larvae that may try to eat your growing plants. They are easier to detect during the early morning. After that, the larvae tend to hide from the sun under the leaves, making it harder for them to be seen.

  • Check water level from time to time. The water level tends to recede faster as your plants grow. For leafy vegetables, such as mustard, lettuce, or pechay, 10 liters of water with nutrient solution may be just enough to support the plants till harvest time (about four to 5 weeks) without refilling.
    • When growing bell peppers or tomatoes, the SNAP hydroponics developers (Dr. Primitivo Jose A. Santos and Dr. Eureka Teresa M. Ocampo) recommend growing two bell pepper or tomatoes per box.

When it's time to refill

When water level has gone down by more than an inch below the bottom of the seedling plugs, refill it with fresh nutrient solution. However, the nutrient solution used for replenishing should be half the original strength of the solution. That is, for 10 liters of water, add 12.5 ml each of SNAP A and B.

When refilling with fresh water/nutrient solution, add enough solution to just submerge the bottom half of the roots but not the entire roots. You don't want to drown your plants.

For More Information

You can contact the following:

Physiology Section
Institute of Plant Breeding, UP Los Baños
(049) 576-3189

or the

Director's Office
Institute of Plant Breeding
UP Los Baños
(049) 536-5287

You may also contact the developers of the SNAP for Hydroponics technology through e-mail:

Dr. Primitivo Jose A. Santos (pjasantos@yahoo.com)
Dr. Eureka Teresa M. Ocampo (eteresaocampo@yahoo.com)

The developers of the SNAP technology are more than happy to assist you or answer your questions regarding SNAP Hydroponics.

Reference
  • PJA Santos & ETM Ocampo (Rev. June, 2010). HOW TO SET-UP SNAP HYDROPONICS. Available on the Internet at http://www.bar.gov.ph/downloadables/2011/SNAP-How%20to%20Set%20Up.pdf. Accessed on January 30, 2012

Image: © David Mangusan Jr.


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