ShoRt And SwEEt: thE diGitAl SUn:

GRowinG dwARF FlowERS PARt i

Indoor GardenInG expo

San Francisco




July 25th & 26th, 2009

CONTENTS june 2009
38 54 70
Short and Sweet: Growing Dwarf Flowers Part I
by Dr. Lynette Morgan

The Digital Sun: Brighter Light for Better Results
by Erik Biksa

Subtle Energies in Grow Rooms - Playing Mother Nature
by Evan Folds


80 86 96 104 108

by Lee McCall

The Nutrition of your Plants: Essential Points Part II
by Luis Bartolo

Calcium and Magnesium: Beyond the Obvious
by Richard Gellert

Sun and Soil: Natural Greenhouse Growing Putting Carbon in its Place
by Roland Evans

Grow All Summer: Water-Cooling Explained
by Stephen Keen

10 From the Editor 12 Letters to the Editor 14 16 Ask Erik 20 MAX Facts 30 Product Spotlight 52 Growing for Health 66 Beginner’s Corner


Post-Harvest Clean Up
by Bob Taylor

78 Green Thumb Gardening 94 Tips and Tricks 120 Avant-Gardening 121 Do You Know? 124 Max Mart 127 Check Your Growing IQ 128 Distributors 138 Coming up in July


jessica raymond
The countdown is on for the summer’s biggest Indoor Gardening Expo in San Francisco. Make plans now to attend the “Growing our World Green, 6th Annual ” San Francisco Expo - July 25-26, 2009 at the Fort Mason Center. Saturday, July 25th is designated as Industry Only, with the general public welcome to attend for free on Sunday, July 26th from noon until 5 pm. Discover water-wise and ecofriendly gardening products from around the world. For more details and directions to the expo, visit www. The Maximum Yield team will be there and welcome you to stop and say hello.

Summer solstice is approaching and with it, some of the hottest days of the season. Bearing this in mind, we have put together a fabulous issue featuring ways to keep your plants nice and cool, along with vital nutritional advice, information on the subtle energies in your grow room and the all important advice on system clean up tips for between crops. Be sure to check our online extra tips featured with these articles at Maximum Yield will soon be featuring a new regular column titled “Your Best Advice. We want you to share what you know and the ” gardening techniques that you have found to be successful. Send your tips to and stayed tuned to what others find helpful in producing a healthy garden. Your advice will be printed in an upcoming issue of Maximum Yield. Our Win Big! Grow Big! online reader contest has so far brought a lot of entries, and there is still time to get your entry form in to win the May/June prizes. Enter by June 21, 2009 at www. This month’s prizes were generously donated by Grodan, Sunshine Systems, Botanicare and Doktor Doom. See our ad on page 119 for more details. Watch for a new assortment of prizes every second month for the entire year.

Jessica Raymond, Editor


Dr. Lynette Morgan holds a B. Hort. Tech. degree and a PhD in hydroponic greenhouse production from Massey University, New Zealand. A partner with SUNTEC International Hydroponic Consultants, Lynette is involved in remote and on-site consultancy services for new and existing commercial greenhouse growers worldwide as well as research trials and product development for manufacturers of hydroponic products. Lynette authors five hydroponic technical books. Visit and for more information. Erik Biksa, leading expert in hydroponic technologies, holds a diploma in Agriculture with majors in fertilizer sciences and crop production. Erik’s earliest gardening experiences began when he started to walk, learning the secrets of time honored, old-world gardening practices from his grandfather. Erik has amassed over 18 years of indoor gardening experience and intensive research while pushing the boundaries of crop growth technologies. Since first appearing in Maximum Yield in 1999, the “Ask Erik” column and numerous articles have reached growers throughout the world. Evan Folds is president of Progressive Gardens, a natural approach
land care company, and Progress Earth, all located in Wilmington, NC. With a degree in biology and religion, Evan’s interests include making sense of food production and bringing awareness to the myriad injustices we collectively perpetrate upon ourselves as a society, including empty food, municipal water fluoridation and spiritual intolerance. Evan is also a board member on the Progressive Gardening Trade Association.

Richard Gellert owner of Hydro-Logic Purification Systems,

provides the hydroponics and gardening industry with cutting edge water purification technologies. His knowledge and passion of water purification technologies and its importance to the hydroponics and gardening industries has been instrumental in helping gardeners worldwide. Hydro-Logic offers a complete line of water filters and is recognized as the industry’s leading supplier of high quality water filters.

Roland Evans is lifelong gardener and CEO of Organic Bountea. As

a student and teacher of Holistic Systems, he actively promotes an ecological approach to cultivation using the Soil Food Web. Trained as a psychologist, Roland also writes on the interface between gardening and personal growth.

Stephen Keen has been an indoor gardening hobbyist for nearly 10

years. The hot summers in Texas led him to start experimenting with different equipment and alternative ways to cool the garden. His personal successes with his garden led him to want to bring new ideas, mainly water-cooling, to the mainstream, which led to the founding of Hydro Innovations. He tries to educate as many growers as possible any way he can about the benefits of new ideas and how to be effective at controlling heat in indoor gardens.

Lee McCall graduated from Johnson and Wales University with a concentration in Culinary Arts. Culinary school opened the door to research and work with hydroponics and organic production. Currently, Lee attends business school in Denver and focuses on continuing advancements with Maximum Yield and indoor gardening technology.

Bob Taylor is the chief chemist of Flairform ( - an
Australian based manufacturing company. Up until 1992, Bob was the principal chemist of the water resources section at Western Australia’s State Government Chemistry Centre. Bob was an approved NATA signatory for a wide range of water analyses as well as an official registered analyst for the government’s chemical analysis monitoring program of all fertilizers registered in Western Australia.

Jose Luis Pinheiro Bartolo is the President and Chief Executive

Officer of Biobizz Worldwide Inc., ( a global leader in the production of organic fertilizers and soil mixtures in the hydroponic industry, which he launched in 2002. He is passionate about maintaining a business philosophy that identifies with the organic market and providing the highest service and perfectionism that comes direct from his heart and is projected to all aspects of his life.



the editor
Green Alternatives
I enjoyed reading Erik Biksa’s article, LEDs: Lighting for Hyper Space Crops or Just Hype? The way I see it, we need incremental stages of familiar comparable wattage LEDs to phase out or to build a complete replacement for HID lighting in a way that isn't so humbling to the hobby market. Surely this way in the long term, the market could reduce initial costs to early adapters, thus accelerating the market. I believe we need watt for watt replacements for HID lighting in the industrial green housing market to prove once and for all that proper LED diodes yield more than HID while generating less heat, therefore, justifying long term costs and adaptation. Charles Andrew Besso

Pure Water
I loved the feature article in the April issue of USA, The Dynamic Nature of Water. The author, Evan Folds, writes so clearly and has such a good message. I hope you will keep printing his articles in the future. Thanks Flo Kaplan

Algae Cloaked as Pythium?
After reading your “Ask Erik” letter in the October issue of Maximum Yield USA, I feel I can help the reader’s situation. My garden is lit with 1000 watt lights and is a constant flow bucket system. I have faced an identical situation, and also replaced all of my system’s plumbing only to have the problem return multiple times. I brought my problem to an indoor gardening retail store and they believed the symptoms sounded like algae. Algae causes a slippery/slimy coating, depending on the severity, on anything submerged in your system’s water. Algae is caused directly or indirectly by HID lighting. Any HID light coming into contact with untreated water will create algae. The same will happen to nutrients exposed to HIDs. If your growing medium has algae growing on the top of it, top watering with untreated water will contaminate your system as well. After about two years of complete frustration, I finally found a combination of products that will prevent an outbreak and cure the problem. In a 27 gallon system I add 20 ounces of three per cent hydrogen peroxide, nearly twice the recommended dose; three ounces of algae reducer, which contains beneficial bacteria; and three tablespoons of pond dye (this was the final and most important piece to the puzzle. The best option is the dye that is safe for fish and plants). When algae is present, fungus gnats may appear as well, which leads many to believe their plants are wilting due to the gnats. I suspect in many cases the fungus gnats are secondary to the algae as gnats feed on algae. The same thing happens when algae suffocates the roots causing them to die; this allows pythium to set in as a secondary infection. If fungus gnats are present, use sticky strips for the adults and a mild fungicide for the larvae, which is added directly to your reservoir. This combination of products has enabled me to grow practically trouble free. Happy growing. Paul Foster Calgary, AB
Maximum Yield reserves the right to edit for brevity.

A Dedicated Reader

USA December 2008

To the great people of Maximum Yield, During a move last month, I lost my December 2008 issue of Maximum Yield USA. I am enclosing $5 in hopes that I can replace it. I have a complete Aero Soil - Habanero Part One library of your publication and Hydroponic Growing Methods: feel lost with a missing issue. I Compared and Contrasted am currently working on the CPS: Continuous Production Systems project; great article by the way. As well, the rest of the articles in the magazines are great.




Thanks Your Loyal Reader Wayne Affordable Landscapes Kent,WA.

Biodynamics Claptrap
The Biodynamics article on page 88 of February 09’ USA is unintelligible claptrap, just like biodynamics is claptrap. We need to make an effort to expose this nonsense for what it is. Maybe an article by a real agriculture expert could be published, addressing some of the garbage. The author of the article is described on page 10 as having an interest in bringing awareness to the injustice of municipal water fluoridation. Back in the 1950s, nutcases called fluoridation a Communist plot. Thank you. Mike Schartz
12 MAXIMUM YIELD USA - June 2009

We want to hear from you! Write us at: Maximum Yield Publications Inc. 2339A Delinea Place, Nanaimo, BC V9T 5L9 or Email us at:



VOLUME 10 – NUMBER 3 June 2009

Summer is the prime season for gardening events from every corner of the country. Stay updated on past and upcoming shows featuring greenhouse gardening, organics, hydroponics, and of course indoor gardening, that are coming to a city near you.

Maximum Yield is published monthly by Maximum Yield Publications Inc. 2339A Delinea Place, Nanaimo, BC V9T 5L9 Phone: 250.729.2677; Fax 250.729.2687 No part of this magazine may be reproduced without permission from the publisher. If undeliverable please return to the address above. The views expressed by columnists are a personal opinion and do not necessarily reflect those of Maximum Yield or the Editor. Publication Agreement Number 40739092

PRESIDENT/PUBLISHER - Jim Jesson GENERAL MANAGER - Don Moores BUSINESS MANAGER - Linda Jesson SALES DIRECTOR - Lisa Lambersek EDITOR - Jessica Raymond ADVERTISING SALES 250.729.2677 Linda Jesson - Lisa Lambersek - Keri Hendry - Julie Madden - PRODUCTION & DESIGN Pentti Tikkanen - Alice Joe - Wes Cargill - ACCOUNTING - Lee Anne Veres USA DISTRIBUTION Aurora Innovations BWGS, BWGS West and BWGS East General Hydroponics Hydrofarm Hydro International National Garden Wholesale / Sunlight Supply Tradewinds CANADIAN DISTRIBUTION Brite-Lite Group Biofloral Eddis Wholesale Greenstar Plant Products Inc. Hydrotek MegaWatt Quality Wholesale UK DISTRIBUTION Growth Technology Hydrogarden Northern Hydroponic Wholesale Nutriculture UK AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTION Futchatec Growth Technology Hydraspher

Maximum Yield is proud to announce our exclusive online reader contest, Win Big! Grow Big! Tons of exciting new products are being given away to help you grow the best yields of the year. Entries must be received by June 21, 2009 in order to be eligible to win. Chnaces to win different prizes every second month, all year long.

Growers around the world are gearing up for the biggest show of the year, the 6th Annual “Growing our World Green” San Francisco Expo (July 25-26). Also, stay tuned for details on the “Greener Places, Sustainable Spaces” Expo in Orlando (November 7-8).Visit for more information.

This month on Facebook we bring you hard-hitting discussions on the topics that are making news in our industry. We want to hear your opinion, so make sure to become a fan and let us know what you think.

Summer is the perfect season to try something new. Whether you prefer to grow in organic soil or unsteamed coco substrate, this month’s products will help you choose the best fit for you and your garden.

With the sun shining brightly outside, it is easy to forget about your digital sun inside. Discover key points on digital lighting systems and learn how to best play the role of Mother Nature in the grow room.

Learn more about the variety of cal-mag compounds and how they supplement nutrition to targeted plants.

This step-by-step guide will show you how to keeping flowering plants short.

The history of core and coil ballasts will provide insight to the strides that have been made with lighting for indoor gardens.

Tell us what you think at We’d love to hear from you.
14 MAXIMUM YIELD USA - June 2009



Do you have a question for Erik? Forward it to with the words “Ask Erik” in the subject line, and your answer will be printed in an upcoming edition.

I am searching for information about frozen maize pollen. I want to use it to make some crosses, as sometimes we have a very late female or male. To make some crosses, it is very difficult but with frozen pollen, it is very easy. However, I don’t know if it’s possible to do it. Cheers Franck

Franck, Most types of plants can be pollinated using pollen from a frozen state, provided it has been stored under favorable conditions. When pollination begins in your outside corn crop, collect the pollen when conditions are dry, and preferably at times when there is lower light intensity. Moisture from relative humidity in storage or during collection can quickly diminish the viability of pollen collected; moisture is probably pollen’s worst enemy. Collect pollen into sterile and dry vessels. When there is little breeze prevalent, you can shake the pollen onto a white sheet of paper, helping to reduce the collection of other plant particulates and materials which could potentially contaminate the stored pollen. Some breeders prefer to dry their pollen slightly, to remove any moisture that might be present before setting into storage containers. Do not expose pollen to direct sunlight for prolonged periods, or the UV may render the pollen infertile. The containers you store your pollen in should be airtight, and preferably opaque.You can add a small piece of paper towel and/or desiccant (such as silica) to the vessel to help keep moisture from condensing onto the pollen. A small dose of CO2 gas into storage containers will further help to protect viability. Store your pollen containers in a freezer that will not cease cycling until it is time to use the pollen for your breeding program. If the pollen thaws and is re-frozen it may lose viability. When it becomes time to disperse the pollen collected onto your select plants, you will need to cut of the stamen as they appear on the corn plant to be pollinated, as obviously, it would pollinate itself. The stamen are the male reproductive organs that typically appear on the tops of corn plants that release pollen to the silks below, emerging from each of the developing ears. Make sure you remove the stamen before they start to disperse pollen, otherwise it will be difficult to tell which plant was the “father.” Liberally shake your stored pollen over the corn plant, paying special attention to the silks. For every silk hair that does not receive viable pollen, you will see a gap in the formation of the kernels. Each silk leads to its own kernel. In theory, this makes it possible to develop more than one type of seed on the same ear. I hope this helps with the endeavor, and please be sure to let us all know how it works out for you and the breeding program. Highest Regards, Erik Biksa





hydroponic news, tips and trivia

Bean Rust Fungus Deterrent Developed
The detection of 3,000 plant proteins produced in common bean plants may help develop a resistance against the bean rust fungus, Uromyces appendiculatus, a major concern for growers throughout the continental United States. Until recently, disease resistance genes and their proteins were studied one at a time, but through a process known as high-throughput mass spectrometry, identification is completed at a much faster rate. More than 1,500 interactions between the fungus and the plant were revealed, leading to the identification of a potential set of master regulator proteins with a strong resistance response in the plant. This new information may help breeders improve bean varieties that are currently threatened by rust.

25th Anniversary CropKing Hydroponic Grower’s Conference
Held in Dover, DE April 2 to 4, the 25th Annual 2009 CropKing Hydroponic Grower’s Conference was the perfect opportunity for the experienced grower with an interest in hydroponics as a business to enhance their knowledge. Attendees benefited from 60 years combined experience of a multitude of greenhouse crop specialists. Attendees were also invited to visit a nearby, state-of-the-art, half acre lettuce production facility, experiencing and examining the day-to-day operations of a fully functional NFT growing system.

Calcium Helps Plants Make Their Own Aspirin
According to new studies, calcium builds healthy plants by binding to the protein calmodulin. Calmodulin prompts plants to make salicylic acid (SA), a close relative of Aspirin, when threatened. In plants, calcium directs incoming information, helping the plant respond to dangers by forming a barrier that keeps the pathogen from invading deeper into the plant. SA also activates the plant’s immunity, protecting the plant from further pathogen attacks. However, a rise in SA levels also causes the plant to slow its growth, setting up a challenging situation for the plant and the grower. The answer to this balance is the interaction between calcium/calmodulin and a protein called AtSR1, which suppresses the production of salicylic acid. Plants that have extra AtSR1 make almost no SA. They grow larger and faster than a normal plant, but easily succumb to infection. Plants that lack the gene for AtSR1 develop high levels of SA and are nearly impervious to infection, but small in size.
(Source: Washington State University. "In Fight Against Pathogens, Calcium Helps Plants Make Their Own Aspirin." ScienceDaily 11 January 2009. 27 January 2009¬ / releases/2009/01/090106145544.htm)

Record-Setting Tomato Trees Growing at Disney
Growing inside Walt Disney World’s experimental greenhouses at the Epcot Center’s Land Pavilion is two record-setting tomato trees, each having more than 17,000 individual tomatoes on their vines. The plants were discovered in Beijing, China by Young Huang, manager of agricultural science at the Land Pavilion. He met with the scientist responsible for the plants and brought the seeds back to Epcot. The tomatoes are the size of golf balls and are harvested and served at restaurants across Walt Disney World Resort. Huang’s first tomato tree at Epcot, planted last year, set a Guinness World Record when it yielded a harvest of more than 32,000 tomatoes from one vine.





hydroponic news, tips and trivia

Lettuce Carotenoids Affected by UV Light in Greenhouse

Recent studies have found that by growing green leaf lettuce in a greenhouse during the winter under the proper ultraviolet light can boost their levels of carotenoids, biological antioxidants that protect cells and tissue from damage. When regularly consumed from green leafy vegetables, carotenoids may help reduce the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration later in life. Plants grown in the field express beneficial chemical compounds, thought to be a means to protect themselves from the effects of UV radiation. The role of light exposure on these compounds was examined on eight green and eight red leaf lettuce varieties. They each received either supplemental ultraviolet-A (UV-A) light, both UV-A and ultraviolet-B (UV-B) light or no UV (receiving only regular light). The green leaf lettuce varieties carotenoid concentration levels were greatly increased when supplemented with UV-A plus UV-B, while the compounds in the red varieties were slightly but significantly reduced.

Flairform Grower’s Guide
Do you know the best way to clone your favorite plant? The Flairform Grower’s Guide can help you. Concise information on lighting, ventilation, pH, system design, diseases, pests, cloning, conductivity, nutrient technology and much more is available in the Flairform Grower’s Guide. Ask for a free copy at your local grow shop or download it for free at Flairform - Water treatment specialists and horticultural consultants since 1966.
22 MAXIMUM YIELD USA - June 2009



hydroponic news, tips and trivia

Largest American Farming Conference Celebrates 21 Years Safe Dosage Tests of Organic Fertilizers
Appropriate doses of organic residues, such as sewage sludge and animal waste, can benefit plants, but it has been found that excessive quantities can lead to a toxic impact on soil life. Researchers are currently establishing safe doses, in an effort to prevent these toxic impacts on soil, by utilizing controlled amounts of organic residues. The maximum safe doses of seven residues were analyzed, including two kinds of dehydrated sewage sludge, two kinds of composted mud, two kinds of heat-dried mud and one sample of heat-dried pig waste. By adhering to these levels, researchers believe 95 per cent of agroecosystem species would be protected.
(Source: Plataforma SINC. "Over-use of Organic Fertilizers in Agriculture Could Poison Soils, Study Finds." ScienceDaily 31 October 2008. 27 February 2009¬ /releases/2008/10/081030194236.htm)

Organized by the Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES), the Organic Farming Conference (OFC) is the largest farmer-centered conference in the United States, held annually in La Crosse, WI. With over 60 informative workshops, 140+ exhibitors, locally-sourced organic food, live entertainment and inspirational keynote speakers, the OFC is celebrated as the foremost educational and networking event in the organic farming community. When the OFC was introduced over 20 years ago, only 90 people were in attendance; last year the event attracted over 2,600 farmers, advocates, educators and community members. The 21st Annual Conference will be held February 25-27, 2010. Registration costs include six workshop sessions on topics ranging from Healthy Soils, Field Crops and Small Grains, Market Farming, Livestock, Marketing and Business and Organic Certification.





hydroponic news, tips and trivia

New Bacterial Species Named after ARS Scientist
A new bacterial genus species, named Robinsoniella peoriensis in honor of Agricultural Research Service microbiologist Isadore M. Robinson, has been detected. It was while cataloging microbial populations in swine manure that R. peoriensi was first revealed. This discovery can help uncover new ways of diminishing the odors produce by swine manure, one such approach involving the use of condensed tannins or other compounds to inhibit hog pit bacteria. This foul smelling manure emits gases like ammonia and methane that can be environmentally harmful. Five strains of R. peoriensis were collected from a hog farm, and oddly, the strain’s sequence matched that of an isolate taken from the heel infection of a 79-year-old Swedish woman.

Light Or Fight? Tough Survival Choices of Plants
An international team of scientists has discovered how plants direct their energies between out-competing their neighbors for light versus investing directly in defense against hungry insects. By learning how plants resolve this dilemma, the possibilities to increase a crop’s natural defense can be possible. Studies have shown that plants lessen their investment in defense when they perceive an increased risk of competition for light. Plants have a light sensor that tells them when they are being crowded; a signal switches on the synthesis of the plant growth hormone auxin, which helps plants grow taller. Plants also react to chemical cues caused by caterpillars, by increasing their production of defense-related hormones.
(Source: Salk Institute. "Light or Fight? How Plants Make Tough Survival Choices." ScienceDaily 27 February 2009. 27 February 2009 http://www.¬ /releases/2009/02/090227161823.htm)




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