Stephen Brookes, Author at Garden Culture Magazine

What Is Silicon?

“The biochemistry of Silicon in plants is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma.” — (Epstein, 2001) Silicon is still not as well understood today as many of the other elements that we commonly use in our plant feeding regimes. It’s probably not used as widely as other additives, and yet it is (in my opinion) one of the most important tools in a grower’s arsenal. I say this because of what it can do for your plants throughout all stages of growth and reproduction. The benefits vary from helping the plant to support itself through stronger cell walls to This article by Stephen Brookes...

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Beets, High Blood Pressure & Nitrogen

Is it the nitrogen content that makes beet juice beneficial to battling hypertension? Can you grow a beet crop without nitrogen fertilizer? An interesting project involving beets, high blood pressure, and a harvest with the lowest nitrogen content possible. By the end of this article, you might well be wondering about the possibilities of adjusting fertilization for certain crops to produce natural medicine. My old university contacted me 3 months ago about growing some beetroots for them. An easy task by no stretch of the imagination, but not when they want beetroots with as little nitrate as possible! The reason for this is...

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Why is Grow Room Humidity Important?

What exactly is humidity? How does it affect plants? As the controller of grow room humidity, having a keen understanding of what it can do to crop health is vital to your success as a grower. You know those really hot days, when no matter what we do we just can’t cool ourselves down? That’s mainly due to high humidity! When the air around us becomes saturated with water vapour, making it impossible to cool ourselves, as the sweat from our skin can’t evaporate. Then we have the really hot days that we could just lay in the sun all day, but...

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Organic Gardening Basics

This article was written by Stephen Brookes and originally appeared in Garden Culture Magazine, UK Issue 4. Taking an interest in organic gardening is usually triggered by wanting to avoid fruits and vegetables that are free of pesticides, or taking better care of the environment. That’s important, yes, but first you’ve got to understand it’s all about the soil and plant roots. Unlike conventional gardening, it’s not about appearances on the surface. They do matter. But take care of the unseen first, and it will take care of you. What is unique about organic gardening?. An organic gardener utilizes...

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The NPK Riddle

Test your logical deduction skills! There are five houses that grow five different crops in a row. In each house lives a person with a different nationality. The five owners feed their plants with a certain brand of nutrients, use a certain brand of media, and have different lights. None of the owners have the same nutrient, media, or type of light… Other facts: 1. The Canadian grows strawberries. 2. The Dutch use Hydrotops. 3. The Americans use T5’s. 4. The pumpkin grower is on the immediate left of the broccoli farmer. 5. The pumpkin grower uses LED’s. 6. The owner...

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