Last Updated on October 30, 2022
Hydroponics comes with so many benefits. However, there are a few challenges to it. One of these challenges is root rot. If you are struggling with root rot in your hydroponics, not too worry. We will give you the information on how to fix root rot in your hydroponics.
Some growers experience root rot and think there’s no solution and dispose of these crops. That’s not always the case. It will interest you to know that most root rot can be fixed and we will teach you how to go about it. However, if the issue has existed for too long, your plants may perhaps be irremediable.
How To Fix Root Rot In Your Hydroponics
The first thing to fixing root rot in your hydroponics is to identify the problem. After identifying the problem, you can now take steps to solve it. Below are some ways you can detect root rot problems.
#1 Identifying Root Rot in Your Hydroponics
Signs should be checked from the leaves down to their roots. To tell if you have a root rot problem in your hydroponics, check for the following signs:
- Leaves: leaves will begin turning yellow, wilting, or dry up.
- Root: When you notice your leaves looking bad, that’s a sign your roots are suffering. Check your roots immediately. An unhealthy root looks tangled, slimy, and turns brown.
- Smell: when you lift the lid of your tank to perceive the smell, the roots of your plant will smell funny.
#2 Fixing Root Rot Hydroponics
To stand a chance of saving your plant, early detection and taking early action is the key. Do the following quick steps to save your rotting root:
- Go ahead and shut down your hydroponic system.
- If your plants are in net pots, remove your plants from your hydroponic system.
- Clean the root by running it underwater to eliminate the dead root and remains.
- With clean scissors, cut away the infected root left.
- Go ahead and drain the solution from your reservoir.
- If you have a single plant hydroponic system, remove it and sterilize it. If your hydroponic system is multiple plants, isolate the infected ones, clean and sterilize them. Do not allow the root rot to affect the rest of your garden.
- Now go ahead and put your system back on and running. Refill the nutrient solution.
- However, if you are dealing with a large plant, cut or trim away the wilting leaves and part of the rooting root. This way, you will allow the plant to focus on rebuilding a new and healthy root system and leaves.
- At the end of it all, ensure you maintain a nutrient level of about 70 degrees and adequately oxygenated. You should also keep the air pump on at all times for adequate air circulation.
Causes Of Brown Roots In Hydroponics
The major cause of root rot is poor air circulation in the water. Another reason is the lack of direct exposure of air to the root or combinations of both. It majorly occurs with a deep water culture system when the roots are exposed to water for a long time.
Although we know hydroponic farming deals majorly with water solutions, at times the roots can rot from oversaturation. This encourages and causes infiltration of pathogenic bacteria, microorganisms, and fungi to feast on the root causing root rot.
This infection can spread throughout your garden if you do not solve the problem. If you contain these infected plants early enough, you can save the rest of your uninfected hydroponic garden.
Prevention Of Root Rot In Hydroponic
You can always prevent root rot in hydroponics if you know and avoid the causes. Even before you experience root rot, it will be very helpful if you learn ahead how to quickly fix a root rot problem should in cause it happens to you. Follow the steps we outlined above to fix your rotten root.
Other steps you can take to prevent root rot are:
- Maintain a clean and sterile condition of your hydroponics. Decontaminate your hydroponic system if need be and sterilize all parts of your system. Make sure there is no room for pathogenic bacteria from breeding.
- Go for a suitable pump and air stone as this will enhance good air circulation.
- Trim your roots religiously to encourage oxygen and nutrient to circulate easily. Don’t allow the root to overgrow and become large because they can hinder the access to important nutrients your plants need.
Can hydroponic plants get root rot?
Yes, root rot can occur on plants grown in a hydroponic system. A number of factors can cause root rot, including nutrient deficiencies, poor aeration, and the presence of disease organisms. While it's not always easy to diagnose, you may be able to use a soil test kit to determine whether a nutrient deficiency is present or if your plants are suffering from any type of fungal or bacterial infection.
If you do suspect root rot, it's important to get the plant out of the system as quickly as possible and begin treating it with a good fungicide.
It's important to make sure that the lights you use are either low-light fluorescent lamps or low-energy-consumption metal halide lamps. This will help to keep the plants from being stressed by excess light. You'll also want to make sure that your plants have access to adequate ventilation, which is often difficult to accomplish in a hydroponic system.
However, the main cause of root rot is over-watering. This causes the roots to wilt and eventually die.
What does hydroponic root rot look like?
Hydroponic root rot is a fungal disease that can affect your indoor hydroponic garden. It causes roots to become brittle and brown, and the plants will have a watery root area that is infected. The first symptom is the appearance of white fluffy roots. These roots are the hyphae of the fungus that is causing the damage. They are soft and spongy.
If you see white fluffy roots in your plants, you need to get rid of them immediately. If you do not remove them immediately, they will continue to grow and cause more harm. You can remove the roots with a sharp knife or by cutting them off at the base.
Can you over water in hydroponics?
Yes, it is possible to overwater plants in a hydroponic system.
Does high pH cause root rot?
The pH of a plant or soil is a measure of the amount of acid or base in that environment. The pH scale runs from 0 to 14 and is used to describe the strength of the acid or base in a solution. A pH of 7 is neutral; anything below 7 is acidic, while anything above 7 is alkaline. A plant’s normal pH range is between 2.5 and 1.5. A pH below 2.5 is considered too low for most plants and is often called acidic. QA PH below 3 is an indication of root rot.
Can root rot be reversed?
Yes. Root rot is caused by fungi, which are organisms that grow and reproduce in a similar manner to the bacteria that cause most other diseases. Fungi are not living organisms, but rather an organism's spores. To prevent root rot, you need to prevent the fungal spores from germinating.
The most common root rot is caused by the fungus Phytophthora megakarya. P. megakarya is found in wet soil and has the ability to break down the cell walls of roots. When the cell walls of the root are damaged, the plant begins to decay. Other types of root rot are caused by species of Fusarium, Rhizoctonia, Pythium and Sclerotinia. There are many ways to control root rot. Preventing the fungi from germinating is one method. Another is controlling the moisture conditions around the roots. If the soil becomes too dry, the roots will not have enough water to feed them properly. Roots should also be kept moist at all times. You can also use fungicides to prevent the fungus from germinating.
Cleanliness and good aeration are the right ways to preventing rotting of the root. Another way is to detect the symptoms on time to tackle them.
If you are experiencing root rot in your hydroponics, follow our outlined steps to fix your plants.
Eunice is an enthusiastic gardener with a passion for growing beautiful flowers. She loves nothing more than spending time in her garden, tending to her plants and enjoying the outdoors. Eunice has been gardening for over 15 years and has developed a unique style of landscaping that is both practical and aesthetically pleasing. She is especially fond of growing roses and enjoys experimenting with different varieties and colors. Eunice takes great pride in her garden and often shares the fruits of her labor with friends and family. In her spare time, she enjoys reading gardening magazines and attending local horticulture events. Eunice is passionate about her hobby and is always eager to share her knowledge and experience with others.