Growing Hydroponic Flowers Indoors!
We like to grow flowers in our outdoor garden all summer. However, since we live in Wisconsin, the season for flowers only lasts a few months before the sun drops low in the sky and freezing temperatures set in. But what if we could grow flowers indoors? I already grow lots of other plants indoors using hydroponics, so why not flowers?
So I gave it a shot. I planted some compact zinnia and petunia seeds into net cups. The zinnias germinated and grew very quickly, and within a several weeks I had lots of blooms! The petunias were slower to germinate and get started, but once they took hold they grew very quickly.
For this grow I used a hydroponic square rail system (check out the design here) with nutrients continuously circulating from a small pump. I used the same grow lights as what I use for lettuce, herbs, strawberries and other produce that I grow hydroponically. I didn't do anything fancy with lighting schedules, just 14 hours per day of light. For nutrients, I used a similar approach to other plants, except more concentrated (~1200 ppm).
One benefit of this approach is that the plants can be transferred straight from the hydroponic system into a vase for a living bouquet! This was a really fun grow and I plan to experiment with flowers quite a bit more this winter.