Hydroponics III


Learn to manage hydroponic systems and equipment; compare different options (including organic hydroponics, with tuition from experts incl. Dr Lyn Morgan and John Mason, author of Commercial Hydroponics.

Course CodeBHT321
Fee CodeS2
Duration (approx)100 hours
QualificationStatement of Attainment


It's Easy to Enrol

Select a Learning Method

I am studying from...

Enable Javascript to automatically update prices.

All prices in Australian Dollars.

Payment plans available.

Courses can be started at any time from anywhere in the world!
Learn more about Managing Hydroponic Systems

For people who already understand a lot about hydroponics
This course has been developed by industry professionals with decades of experience advising hydroponic businesses and farms.
It was developed to complement Hydroponics I and II; and is intended as training for serious growers and industry professionals.

It takes you through a carefully constructed process of learning; to help you understand the management of a hydroponic system; embed that understanding, raise awareness of the broader industry and help you to connect with sources and resources that are relevant to hydroponics, and will assist you in maintaining a "currency" in your perspective on the industry.

Learning to manage hydroponics is more than just gathering factual information: it also requires an ability to choose the right information to apply to the situation at hand; as well as an ability to understand and apply that information appropriately. A book or web site can give you information; but you need to move through a process of learning, and be guided by competent teachers in order to properly learn something: and that is what this course can do for you. 


Course Content and Structure
There are eight lessons in this course as follows:

1. Options for Managing Plant Culture - different approaches to cultural operations in hydroponics. Organics vs. hydroponics:Nutrient differences in food products. Is hydroponic food more or less healthy than organic? How feasible is organic hydroponics?

2. Planning a Hydroponic Operation - site and crop selection; matching a system with a crop, materials, resources & services required.

3. System Design Components - pumps, hardware, media, pipes, size, type, and so forth. Components for different types of culture.

4. Managing a Hydroponic System in Hot, Humid Conditions - tropical and subtropical climates or summer in temperate areas.

5. Water Management - water quality measures, treatments, runoff,testing, purifying water, water in recirculating and run-to-waste systems.

6. Nutrient Formulation - standard formulations, detecting toxicities & deficiencies.

7. Controlling Nutrient Levels - using EC and pH measures of concentration levels, solution temperatures, and maintaining nutrient levels.

8.Pest & Disease Control - nutrient and pH manipulation for control of pests & diseases, integrated pest management, common pests and diseases.

Aims

  • Describe different approaches to cultural operations
  • Demonstrate an awareness of similarities and differences between organic and hydroponic production techniques
  • Describe how to plan a hydroponic operation through site and crop selection, matching a specific crop, materials, resources and services required, and site layout; for different specific crops.
  • Discuss system design components such as pumps, grow beds, solution tanks, media and pipes in terms of size, type, and options for different cultures and specific crops.
  • Provide details of how to manage a hydroponic system in hot, humid conditions such as in tropical or subtropical areas, or in summer, in temperate areas, for specific crops.
  • Explain options for water management such as water sources, quality, testing, treatments, and use in recirculating and non recirculating systems.
  • Recommend awareness of natural and other methods of pest and disease control such as biological controls, as part of IPM and nutrient and pH manipulation for different pests and diseases.
  • Explain and recommend different standards of nutrient formulation, and advanced methods of detecting toxicities and deficiencies in specific crops.
  • Recommend methods to control nutrient level concentrations by taking EC, pH and temperature measurements, and maintaining nutrient levels for different specific crops.

What You Will Do

  • Learn about the following:
    • Hydroponics versus Organic Crops
    • Feasibility of Organic Hydroponics
    • Hydroponic Food Health
    • Types of Hydroponic Culture -Water, Sand, Aggregate, Rockwool, Sawdust, Other
    • Planning a Hydroponic Sustem
    • Site Appraisal
    • Climate -temperature, frost, snow, humidity, light, dust, wind
    • Water Supply
    • Other Resources
    • Site Preparation
    • Site Layout
    • Matching a System with a Crop
    • Grow Bed and Tank Construction
    • Pumps and Pipes
    • Materials for Different Types of Culture based Systems
    • Materials for use with Sand Culture
    • Materials for Use with Aggregate Culture
    • Materials for Use with Rockwool Culture
    • Materials for Use with Sawdust Culture
    • Materials for Use with NFT
    • Aeroponics
    • Water
    • Chilling
    • Humidity and Temperature
    • Pest Control
    • Types of Tropical Culture
    • Sand Culture in Hot Humid Places
    • Ebb and Flow Systems
    • Modified Dynamic Root Floating (DRF) System
    • Deep Flow and Chilling
    • Water Sources -mains water, rain, underground, surface
    • Water Quality
    • Hard Water
    • Water pH
    • Water EC
    • Sodium Chloride
    • Turbidity
    • Smell and Colour
    • Iron Content
    • Carbon Dioxide
    • Water Recirculating Systems
    • Water Treatments
    • Compounds for Formulations
    • Dutch Classification of Nutrient Formulae
    • Nutrient Formulae
    • Nutrient Deficiencies and Toxicities
    • Nutrient Mobility
    • Detecting Nutrient Deficiencies
    • Toxicities
    • Nutrients and pH
    • EC and Nutrient Solution Levels
    • Maintaining Nutrient Levels
    • Nutrient Temperatures
    • Integrated Pest Management
    • Common Pests and Diseases

WHAT MATERIALS DO YOU USE WITH WATER CULTURE?

The type of components required in a water culture system will depend on the scale of the operation. For instance, jars may be appropriate in amateur and home hydroponics setups but are unlikely to be required in a commercial scale operation, save perhaps for storing nutrient solutions in. Generally speaking though, a commercial scale water culture venture will have a greater number of components, and in larger sizes.

Water culture systems are the simplest in terms of the types of components required. In a basic system, plants may sit in polystyrene rafts which float on top of tanks containing water enriched with nutrient solution. An alternative is to use a litter tray which sits on the top of the tank. This has a wooden frame and the base is made from plastic with holes for plant roots to pass through. The crown of the plants can be supported with polystyrene pieces.

An air pump is needed to oxygenate the solution and provide air to the plant roots. The pump is connected to an oxygenating stone or perforated pipe. This type of system lends itself well to growing head lettuce.

A recirculating water culture system is slightly more complicated. In this type of system, the nutrient solution is pumped through the beds and is returned through PVC pipes to a main reservoir. As the solution leaves the beds it passes through baffles which also help to aerate it. At least one change of solution is needed per hour for a large 30m bed with 10-12cm of nutrient solution.

In a continuous flow system, nutrient solution is pumped continuously over the plant roots to ensure that the solution reaching the plant roots is perpetually oxygenated.

In some commercial systems, UV sterilising units have been used to kill pathogens such as bacteria, fungi, and viruses in the solution as it is returned to the grow beds from the reservoir tank. However, these units do not combat all pathogens. For instance, pythium is unaffected. They also appear to reduce some of the micronutrients in solutions and, in particular, they precipitate iron into hydrous ferric oxide.

Sensors can also be included to measure levels of electrical conductivity (EC) and pH. The EC can be increased through automatic injections of calcium nitrate triggered by sensor readings. Injections of potassium hydroxide are used to increase the pH reading (raise the alkalinity), and injections of sulphuric, phosphoric, or nitric acids can be used to lower pH readings (make it more acid).

Water chillers can also be installed to reduce water temperatures of solutions during hot conditions. These also oxygenate solutions and circulate them in addition to chilling. Those with stainless steel drive shafts are better in nutrient solutions.
 
 
SUPPLEMENTARY READING

The school's bookshop is publishing a new e book every few weeks, providing our students with a reliable and up to date source of supplementary reading material.
At a time when many publishers are suffering, bookshops are closing and less printed books are being published; we believe it is important to ensure students can get books that they are referred to by their tutors, and the only real way to ensure this is to have our staff write and publish the titles.

In addition, these books are written with the courses in mind; and as such are more in line with your needs as a student.

Visit the bookshop at www.acsebook.com
 

WHY CHOOSE THIS COURSE OVER OTHER HYDROPONIC COURSES?

This course has been developed for either:

  1. To be used as part of a sequence of study (combined with Hydroponics I & II; to provide a college or more advanced academic level of training in hydroponics); or
  2. For someone who already understands the mechanics of hydroponics; or the growing of plants, but needs to learn more about how to connect these two skills together.

Graduates will learn more about how different plants should be managed in a hydroponic system. You may know how to grow vegetables in soil, but translating that knowledge to hydroponics requires a different mindset to working with soil.

Your knowledge of both hydroponics and of plant culture will expand as you proceed through this course, and as that happens, you will begin to see more possibilities for growing crops hydroponically in commercial situations.



Credentials

ACS Distance Education holds an Educational Membership with the ATA
ACS Distance Education holds an Educational Membership with the ATA

ACS is an Organisational Member of the British Institute for Learning and Development
ACS is an Organisational Member of the British Institute for Learning and Development

Member of the Institute of Horticulture Careers Advisory Bureau
Member of the Institute of Horticulture Careers Advisory Bureau

Member of Study Gold Coast, Education Network
Member of Study Gold Coast, Education Network

Member Nursery and Garden Industry Association
Member Nursery and Garden Industry Association

ACS is recognised by the International Accreditation and Recognition Council
ACS is recognised by the International Accreditation and Recognition Council



Need assistance?



Start Now!


      


Dr. Lynette Morgan

Broad expertise in horticulture and crop production. She travels widely as a partner in Suntec Horticultural Consultants, and has clients in central America, the USA, Caribbean, South East Asia, the Middle East, Australia and New Zealand.
Marie Beerman

Marie has over 7 years in horticulture and education in both Australia and Germany. Marie has been a co author of several ebooks in recent years, including "Roses" and "Climbing Plants". Marie's qualifications include B. Sc., M.Hort. Dip. Bus. Cert. Ldsc
John Mason

Parks Manager, Nurseryman, Landscape Designer, Garden Writer and Consultant. Over 40 years experience; working in Victoria, Queensland and the UK. He is one of the most widely published garden writers in the world; author of more than 70 books and edito
Commercial Hydroponics
Learn how to grow vegetables, fruit, cut flowers, herbs and other plants hydroponically. This classic is now re-published with new images, a new layout and revised text. A must have resource for anyone who wants to grow hydroponically.
Herbs
Herbs are fascinating plants, mystical and romantic. They have a rich history dating back centuries. Used by monks, apothecaries and ‘witches’ in the past, herbs are undergoing a revival in interest. They are easy to grow, scented, culinary and medicinal
Orchids
A colourful guide for students, home gardeners and orchid enthusiasts. The first part deals with growing orchids, and the second covers dozens of orchid genera, and hundreds of cultivars. Explore orchids as cut flowers, container plants, indoor plants and
Plant Pests & Diseases
Are you one of those people that kill every plant you touch? Perhaps it's not you. Perhaps it's a pest or disease. A little bit of reading might just turn your garden into an oasis. Learn how to identify pests and diseases and bring the spring back into y