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Another awesome and sustainable alternative to Hydroton! - "Growstones"

http://www.growstone.com/hydroponic-substrate/

http://www.hydrofarm.com/pb_detail.php?itemid=9630

made from recycled glass bottles and produced from waste gasses at landfills in the USA!

this stuff is lightweight like expanded shale/clay, but slightly cheaper and with better water/air retention properties. at $30 for 35L(1.25cuft) it is $0.86/L, better than hydroton at $58 for 50L, $1.16/L.

looks like a softer version of lava rock:

I think  I'm going to have to try it out on my next system.  =)

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Hello Averan,

I have been wanting to try them for some time now, especially in Dutch Buckets (I have 12 of them that still have to be set up).I just obtained the 35L large bag (cost is closer to $40),and intend to mix them with Hydroton which here costs around $30 or less for the 50L. Probably will plant tomatoes, peppers, eggplants and some special Indian vegetables, using some with just Hydroton, some just Growstones and some with a mix as the media. I will share the results with you in due course :-)

Averan, in a previous discussion you had asked my experience as to using NFT's and I had indicated that I was working with introducing an alternative to them as regards Vertical growing in my Hybrid Aquaponics systems. I do not know if you saw the post so I am sharing that here with you :

http://sahibaquaponics.com/?p=494

They are working a treat...love them :-)

God bless,

now you've given me something to think about!

i think i'm going to incorporate the SWC bed, but keep NFT pipes for the third and top level.  i've been designing 3-tiered systems which make use of northern latitudes' lower angle of sun for increased light penetration.  thanks for the idea!

back to the topic of media:

that higher price totally ruins the deal on Growstones for me.....too bad.  i will be interested to hear how it performs though.  i really love that it is made in this country and from a waste material!

Hello Averan and Sahib,

Hope you don't mind me jumping in - I see this huge difference in price you guys paid for a 1.25 ft3 bag of Growstones....that is just wrong.

Just to let you know - Growstone MSRP varies between $30 and $32 per bag (1.25 ft3). But all this varies between distributors and for some it varies according to which state you're in because of freight.

In Orlando, FL where I live, I know of retail stores who sell it around $28/ 35.4 L bag (that's $0.79/L) with a 10% discount on top of that. Best,

Paula Costa, Growstone

Thank you Paula,

This was the price a year ago when the product was just becoming known here in Orlando (yes I too live in this area). I have not purchased much as have some concerns about it other than price - perhaps if you have time I would love to discuss - either PM me or e-mail me at sahib@sahibaquaponics.com

God bless

Hello Sahib - I appreciate your invitation. I will email you.
Best, 
Paula

Sahib Punjabi said:

Thank you Paula,

This was the price a year ago when the product was just becoming known here in Orlando (yes I too live in this area). I have not purchased much as have some concerns about it other than price - perhaps if you have time I would love to discuss - either PM me or e-mail me at sahib@sahibaquaponics.com

God bless

While I love the idea I have yet to be able to afford it. Honestly, unless it becomes cheaper than hydroton (which is still too much) I will probably never use it.

I hear you Averan. What are you using currently? 
Paula



Averan said:

While I love the idea I have yet to be able to afford it. Honestly, unless it becomes cheaper than hydroton (which is still too much) I will probably never use it.

1/4" red lava. just as porous as growstones and expanded shale, but far cheaper. not guaranteed non-toxic though so you have to be careful! I currently have about 200gal of media (64cuft). That would be 64 cuft x $46 / 2 cuft = $1472! Whereas it only cost me $75 to have 2 cuyds of lava delivered to my driveway. That is a huge difference for the non-commercial home gardener.

Thanks for sharing Averan. That IS a huge difference indeed. Hope it works great. 
Paula

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