Transplanting potted plants to Kratky hydroponics

My new greenhouse is in full operation and I couldn’t be more excited!

I’ve been stalking MHP Gardener on YouTube, and he has this incredible video that shows how he transplants store-bought tomato plants into his dutch bucket hydroponic set up. AMAZING!

So I thought I’d give it a shot with lettuce and peppers.

As you see below, I took the plants out of their pots and rinsed off the soil.

They looked very sad and wilted after I did so, but had faith. Perhaps I should’ve been more gentle.

Using hydroton, which I soak in water before using, I placed the washed off plants into 2″ net pots. The hydroton is used to keep the plant standing upright and the roots secured toward the bottom of the net pot.

I probably could have been a bit more gentle with the plants as I transported them home and washed them…bc look at those sad leaves. Many broken and looking disheveled. Sorry little guys. 🙁

Then I placed them into my homemade downspout Kratky hydroponics system. I learned from the best… Mike Van Duzee. I highly recommend checking out his channel!

Here’s his tutorial on how to make the downspouts. Yes, I bought my own heat gun and everything! It’s so easy to build these.

The Kratky system is a ‘set and forget’ system, where you put the water + nutrients into the tray, and just let the plants grow. It’s ideal for lettuce, kale, and herbs. I keep tabs on the trays and keep the water just high enough to reach the plant roots. So far so good!

After day 2, the leaves looked pretty wilted, so I cut off all of the partially-broken leaves. And 7 days since transplanting, they’ve perked up substantially.

The plants below are those I grew from seed and successfully transplanted. Check out the green beans! This was the only seedling that sprouted and just 4 weeks later, already has beans producing. This should be good for about 1/10 of a side dish. 🙂

This is what the green bean roots look like in water. Thick and dark green.

I used Root Riot to start my seeds and I don’t know why, but the product just doesn’t work for starting seeds. The plugs get dry and the seeds sit lonely and un-sprouted. I suppose the product is designed more for clones, so I’ll save the rest of my plugs for that.

I’ve also taken some basil cuttings and placed them in their own glass jars. Is it weird that I buy marinara sauce based on the 2″ jar size opening? Perfect, I’ll take it!

And check out this mint! The leaves are growing at the roots.

This is a pumpkin plant that I started from a seed we grabbed from the Halloween pumpkins. It’s not looking too healthy, but it’s cold outside at night and this guy has no protection from the elements. I may move it into the greenhouse soon.

Anyway, check back soon as I update the progress on this method of transplanting potted plants into the hydroponics system. You can also catch my Instagram stories @meeshroom as I hang in the garden from day to day.

Thanks for reading!

About meesh

Meesh has a passion for people, creative projects, and technology. She enjoys painting furniture back to life, gardening, playing with her kids, and connecting people.