hydroponics and alfalfa

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hydroponics and alfalfa

Postby moose121 » Sun Dec 16, 2007 1:17 pm

Hello, I am a high school science research student and I am doing a project on the effect of alfalfa in remediating oil-contaminated water in the presence of oil-eating bacteria. Alfalfa is a know phytoremediator and I plan to use hydroponics to grow the alfalfa in oil-contaminated water. Recently, I have checked the local nurseries but none of them sell alfalfa plants that are already grown. Additionally, I would like help with setting up a simple hydroponics system. Is there a botanist in Southern Calfornia that could help me with this?

Thank you for your time!
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Plant Research

Postby michaelsosnowski » Mon Dec 17, 2007 9:05 am

Moose 121:
The planet needs more of your initative: "By 2020, our vegetables, fruits and flowers will be farmed in multi-storey urban centres. Land is scarce, the population is racing towards 9 billion, transport is a nightmare and consumers demand quality from their supermarkets."

First your seed connection: Park Seed for Medicago sativa L.
[url] http://www.parkseed.com
Second your oil eating bacteria diet: methane monooxygenase (MMO) system responsible for this digestive phenomenon.
Third your Alfalfa lucerne diet:Mineral constituents identified by chemical analysis include (av. values, dry basis): calcium (CaO) 2.80, phosphorus (P2O5) 0.74, potassium (K2O) 4.11, sodium (Na2O) 0.35, and magnesium (MgO) 0.44%: trace elements; barium, chromium, cobalt, copper, iron, lead, manganese, molybdenum, nickel, silver, strontium, tin, titanium, vanadium, and zinc

Hope this helps!
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Postby Terik Daly » Mon Dec 17, 2007 9:50 am


It is actually quite easy to grow your own alfalfa. Alfalfa seeds can be germinated in a glass or plastic jar.

Here is a website that describes how: http://www.backyardnature.net/simple/alf-spr.htm.

Let me know if you have any questions.
All the best,
Terik Daly
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Postby moose121 » Mon Dec 17, 2007 11:47 pm

Do nurseries or farming stores sell already-grown alfalfa plants?
Thank you for the links. They've been really helpful.

Michael: for the nutrient solutions you have provided, they should be available for sale right?
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Postby michaelsosnowski » Tue Dec 18, 2007 11:21 am

Try your local supermarket for sprouts in the produce section.

Try General Hydroponics, 3789 Vine Hill Rd. Sebastopol CA 95472.
(707) 824-9376 Fax: (707) 824-9377
Write for a science experiment sample of FloraGro.[/url]
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