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Jamal Subin
Jamal Subin

Soilless Culture: Theory And Practice __EXCLUSIVE__


Analytical methods used with soilless substrates serve to select the most suitable growing media for a particular application, to compare growing media and to allow quality control for production and trade. Analytical methods also provide the standardized data needed by fertilizer recommendation systems. Assessing a growing medium for an application often requires the combined interpretation of several measured properties as well as the interpretation of the influence of the crop, water supply and nutrient supply systems. As in the related soil sciences, methods are grouped as physical (e.g. water retention characteristics and dry bulk density), chemical (e.g. available nutrients and electrical conductivity) and biological methods (e.g. stability and plant response). The methods are described with separate paragraphs dedicated to the units used, special cases, common values, and the relation to crop growth. A development in practice is the interest in methods which are more dynamic. At present most laboratory methods deliver answers under static conditions, but the plant uptake of water, nutrients, and oxygen by plants is usually highly variable over the course of a day. Another development is the supply of materials from other industries, such as composts, digestates, biochars, and spent mushroom casing which come with quality parameters used in those supplying industries. Important issues are the choice of extraction methods and the expression of water content and organic matter in % V/V. A third development is the interest in the evolution of growing media properties during cultivation as over time, properties may change due to the actions of e.g. root growth and bacterial activity.




Soilless Culture: Theory and Practice


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N2 - Analytical methods used with soilless substrates serve to select the most suitable growing media for a particular application, to compare growing media and to allow quality control for production and trade. Analytical methods also provide the standardized data needed by fertilizer recommendation systems. Assessing a growing medium for an application often requires the combined interpretation of several measured properties as well as the interpretation of the influence of the crop, water supply and nutrient supply systems. As in the related soil sciences, methods are grouped as physical (e.g. water retention characteristics and dry bulk density), chemical (e.g. available nutrients and electrical conductivity) and biological methods (e.g. stability and plant response). The methods are described with separate paragraphs dedicated to the units used, special cases, common values, and the relation to crop growth. A development in practice is the interest in methods which are more dynamic. At present most laboratory methods deliver answers under static conditions, but the plant uptake of water, nutrients, and oxygen by plants is usually highly variable over the course of a day. Another development is the supply of materials from other industries, such as composts, digestates, biochars, and spent mushroom casing which come with quality parameters used in those supplying industries. Important issues are the choice of extraction methods and the expression of water content and organic matter in % V/V. A third development is the interest in the evolution of growing media properties during cultivation as over time, properties may change due to the actions of e.g. root growth and bacterial activity.


AB - Analytical methods used with soilless substrates serve to select the most suitable growing media for a particular application, to compare growing media and to allow quality control for production and trade. Analytical methods also provide the standardized data needed by fertilizer recommendation systems. Assessing a growing medium for an application often requires the combined interpretation of several measured properties as well as the interpretation of the influence of the crop, water supply and nutrient supply systems. As in the related soil sciences, methods are grouped as physical (e.g. water retention characteristics and dry bulk density), chemical (e.g. available nutrients and electrical conductivity) and biological methods (e.g. stability and plant response). The methods are described with separate paragraphs dedicated to the units used, special cases, common values, and the relation to crop growth. A development in practice is the interest in methods which are more dynamic. At present most laboratory methods deliver answers under static conditions, but the plant uptake of water, nutrients, and oxygen by plants is usually highly variable over the course of a day. Another development is the supply of materials from other industries, such as composts, digestates, biochars, and spent mushroom casing which come with quality parameters used in those supplying industries. Important issues are the choice of extraction methods and the expression of water content and organic matter in % V/V. A third development is the interest in the evolution of growing media properties during cultivation as over time, properties may change due to the actions of e.g. root growth and bacterial activity.


Soilless Culture: Theory and Practice, Second Edition, is the first authoritative reference book on both the theoretical and practical aspects of growing plants without the use of soil. It is the go-to source for those involved in this practice, focusing on hydroponics and advancements in technologies and methodologies. The book builds on the thorough presentation of both physical and chemical properties of various soilless growing media, also addressing how these properties affect plant performance in basic horticultural operations, such as irrigation and fertilization. In addition, the book describes the latest technical advancements and methodologies, including run-to-waste, re-circulation and closed systems.


Growing plants without soil has also been achieved through water culture without the use of any solid substrates. This type of soilless production is frequently termed hydroponics. While this term was coined by Gericke (1937) to mean water culture without employing any substrate, currently the term is used to mean various things to various persons. Many use the term to refer to systems that do include some sort of substrate to anchor or stabilize the plant and to provide an inert matrix to hold water. Strictly speaking, however, hydroponics is the practice of growing plants in nutrient solutions. In addition to systems that use exclusively nutrient solution and air (e.g., Nutrient Film Technique (NFT), Deep Flow Technique (DFT), aerohydroponics), we also include in this concept those substrate-based systems where the substrate contributes no nutrients nor ionic adsorption or exchange. Thus we consider production systems with inert substrates such as stone wool or gravel to be hydroponic. In this book, we will generally use of the term hydroponics in conjunction with qualifying terms to clarify the distinction between liquid-culture hydroponics and substrate-based hydroponics; that latter involves a substantial amount of substrate that is inert and has little ion-exchange capacity, while the former has none (or nearly none) of any substrate.


The science of plant production in soilless systems is still young and although much work has been done, many questions still remain unanswered. One of the purposes of this book is to focus on the main issues of the biological, physical, and chemical environment of the rhizosphere and to identify areas where the future research is needed so as to take further advantage of the available substrates and to propose desirable characteristics for future substrates and growing practices to be developed by the next generation of researchers.


Nowadays, soilless growing systems are common in horticultural practice in most European countries, although not in every country does this occur on a large scale. The advantages of soilless systems compared to soil grown crops are: 041b061a72


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