The Latest in Hydroponics

Ted Blossom (Wilson, Connecticut), hydroponics gardener. “Hydroponics: Clean, above-ground and pesticide-free.”

Ted Blossom is a commercial hydroponics gardener who lives near Hartford, Connecticut. He owns a 13,000 square foot greenhouse. He is also a promoter of “suitcase gardening,” which enables people to grow their own vegetables indoors in a small area. Gardens are beneficial to indoor air quality and humidity.

Sharon noted that every move we make and every breath we take ultimately goes back to plants (which put oxygen in the air and feed the meat we eat). She says that soil is alive and that we should live with the Earth and not against the Earth.

Regarding produce, Mr. Blossom noted that sweetness indicates health and ripeness and that vegetables are tastiest and most nutritious when young and rapidly growing, with a high water content. He sells produce to restaurants and groceries and donates to a soup kitchen.

Sharon noted that Walmart is attempting to buy produce closer to the stores.

Ted Blossom grows baby greens, including Bibb lettuce with the roots still on. The Bibb plants are still alive and may be eaten or replanted. He also grows baby arugula, which has a nutty slightly spicy flavor. You can get several baby cuttings from each plant.

His suitcase gardening kits cost $150. They’re like a tub with two trays and arches for lighting. They can be placed near a window or not. Fluorescent lighting is excellent for this. Blossom noted that every state has indigenous produce and Sharon talked a little about dry land farming in arid areas.

Hydroponics is basically above-ground gardening with recirculated, nutrient enriched water. There are many different systems. It requires 1/8 the water of conventional agriculture and produces extremely nutritious food. It is also very clean, with no rat droppings, insects or harmful bacteria.

In addition to Bibb lettuce, Mr. Blossom grows very large leeks, watercress and various types of mung bean and alfalfa sprouts.

He mentioned that ladybugs are extremely beneficial and usually do not carry disease.

Ted drinks 8 to 10 glasses of water a day. His lifestyle recommendations include fresh air, water, good food and work.

Mr. Blossom’s operation does not have a website but it is a tourist attraction. His email address is solartoad@hotmail.com.

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