COCO PLUG: VIABLE AND SUSTAINABLE 

Every hydroponic grower wishes to get a growing medium that provides strength, better nutrient control, aeration, and of course, all of it at a reasonable rate. Hydroponics Coco Plug is the best solution to this. Coco coir is a byproduct of coconut fiber. This coconut coir is one of the most popular types of hydroponic growing medium. There are lots of benefits to growing plants with coconut coir.

What is Coco Plug? 

A growing medium that supports and sustains- coco plug or cocopeat plug as it is commonly called, is one such solution that anchors your plants and represents a giant leap in the hydroponics industry.

Using coco peat as the raw material, coco plugs are manufactured in a meticulous way that includes-

  • Cleaning: husk is rinsed ensuring complete removal of debris and other compounds
  • Sterilization: It undergoes heat sterilization destroying all forms of life and discouraging the growth of algae, fungus or other organisms
  • Buffering: EC and pH of cocopeat is brought down at desired level so that it does not intervene while nutrient-rich water is fed to plants

Uses of Coco Plug 

  • Coco plug provides a perfect combination of incredible water retention, adequate drainage and ideal aeration for your plants
  • The plug comes with a neutral pH value allowing smooth addition of nutrient solution and maintaining optimum pH levels that makes it the perfect growing medium

The other terms that coco plugs are also known by are – coco coir plugs, coco discs and cocopeat plugs. Cocopeat plugs are made from specifically selected peat bog and wrapped in a thin, 100% degradable net. With the smooth addition of nutrient solution,starter plugs become an excellent growing media for hydroponic systems.

At Higronics, cocopeat plugs are used in research and development, a prototype for clients in NFT channels and more. They go by the brand name FastplugTM.

Owing to its organic nature, economic availability, and dependability, FastplugTM made up of coco coir is considered a superlative option as a growing medium for growing plants that require higher moisture content. Understanding the impact of the growing areas on plant growth, this growing media gives us the maximum vegetative and productive response from our green lives. Coco peat increases the water holding capacity of the potting mix and even boosts root growth. When it comes to the healthy growing media for hydroponic systems, the nutrient solution charged starter plugs are the perfect for hydroponic growing media.

How to use coconut coir plugs?

Starting from germination to getting the full harvest done, the use of cocopeat plugin hydroponics is enormous. Below are the steps to get started with cocopeat plug

  • Take a bowl or glass and add about 20ml of water, the plug will expand in 10 to 12 secs
  • Add water until the plug is fully saturated. Push around the coco peat to hydrate and mix up the material
  • Plant the seed in the centre of the expanded cocopeat disc
  • Once the seed is placed, cover it with the cocopeat 
  • Add extra water for the seed to germinate properly 
  • Place the cocopeat plug on a tray and cover it with a humidity shield
  • Check the seedlings daily and make sure to add water when required
  • Once they germinate, the plants are ready to be transplanted to larger hydroponics systems

Coco Plug Pros And Cons

Pro: It is faster in germination. Compared to some other types of media, coco coir starter plugs or cocopeat plugs have shown faster germination. In a few days, it can speed up your growing cycle. With the use of a coco plug made up of coco coir as a germination medium, 2–3 days are saved at every turn. This difference in the number of days can be fit in one extra harvest a year thus translating into more revenue. This could very well make coco peat plugs worth the investment, and it also depends on what your current seedling operation is. One has to shift plugs before getting a root damaged.

Con: Cocopeat plugs cannot be reused. Once seeds grow in a plug and are transplanted into the maturing system, roots incline to take over. While the process of harvesting the crop is completed, the root ball is taken out of the system and the plug is torn apart by the roots or overgrown as well. The growers can reuse plugs in which the seed did not germinate, but this can open doors for disease and is more labour intensive.