The Heat is On - Tips for Growing in the Summer
We adore the summer season for its warm climate and the delightful array of produce it enables us to grow! There's nothing quite as satisfying as relishing bountiful harvests from your Airgarden, nurtured by the radiant weather that fostered their growth. Nevertheless, in certain regions, the scorching heat, exceeding 32°C, can pose a challenge to growing produce. Fear not; we've compiled some valuable tips to guide you through the sweltering summer months with your Airgarden!
You can also escape the heat by relocating your Airgarden indoors provided your have a minimum of 4 hours direct sunlight for herbs & leafy greens & 6 hours for your fruiting plants. If not we recommend using the LED Grow Lights to ensure your indoor growing success.
What to Expect
Elevated temperatures may cause your plants to:
1. Wilt during the day
2. Consume more water
3. Bolt (when leafy greens prematurely flower before reaching harvest size)
It's natural for plants to wilt during the day, even when the reservoir is adequately hydrated. This occurs because the rate of water loss exceeds the rate of water absorption. Your plants will rejuvenate overnight as the temperature drops. To counter wilting, consider adjusting the watering cycle timer to run continuously during the hottest periods of the day. This not only helps mitigate wilting but also introduces a cooling effect, reducing the temperature of the plants' roots and providing relief from the heat.
During extremely hot weather, check the water reservoir at least twice a week and top it off to prevent it from running dry. The heat accelerates water consumption, particularly as the plants approach harvest size. Vigilantly tending to your water reservoir will minimise the risk of plant dehydration.
Bolting in hot weather is an indication that the plant is under stress, perceiving impending demise. Consequently, it transitions to flowering and seeding prematurely, impacting flavour and texture. If you observe a plant starting to bolt, promptly remove it from the Airgarden to utilise it before any undesirable changes in flavour and texture occur.
Mitigating the Effects of Hot Weather
Growing produce in hot weather introduces unique challenges, but these can be mitigated by maintaining cool water temperatures and providing artificial shade for your Airgarden.
Assist seedlings in acclimating after their summer journey with a bit of extra care. Place new arrivals outdoors for a day or two in partial sun, ensuring they don't dry out by sprinkling them with water. If growing indoors, position seedlings by a window to receive some light, and then transplant them into your Airgarden the very next day.
When to Harvest
Opt for morning or evening harvests. This allows ample time for plants to recover and regain their structure after enduring hours of intense heat. Planning your harvest times ensures optimal results!
Top Varieties for Extreme Heat
While our seedling varieties are offered seasonally to showcase what thrives in a particular season, some plants fare better in extreme heat. Here are top varieties to grow in hot weather:
- Herbs: Basil, Grow, Chives, Oregano, Thyme
- Leafy Greens: Rocket, Organic Greens Mix, Kale
- Lettuce: Baby Lettuce Mix, Leaf Lettuces, Lollo Rosso
- Vegetables: Tomatoes, Capsicums, Eggplant, Cucumber, Squash, and Zucchini