This guide applies when you are adding plant food to your water tank for the first time after germinating new yCubes directly on your Gardyn because you either:
- Germinated your Welcome Kit of yCubes on your Gardyn, or
- Started fresh with a new generation of plants on your Gardyn.
Need to do a routine tank top-off instead? Click here!
Follow these steps to ensure only the yCubes ready for plant food receive it, while those that aren’t ready don’t get harmed. When in doubt, wait a few more days to reevaluate your plants!
Step 1: Evaluate all of your yCubes for plant food readiness.
When is a yCube ready for plant food?
Each yCube is ready for plant food when one or more of the following is true:
- It has fully visible true leaves, which are the second set of leaves to grow that resemble the mature plant's leaf shape:
Kale with cotyledons only (left) and true leaves (right)
- It has roots growing out the bottom of the yCube at least 1 inch long:
- The cotyledons are discoloring, often into a pale yellow or white:
Step 2: Count - How many yCubes are ready for plant food based on what you see?
If you answer, "About 1/3 or fewer."
- Leave all of your yCubes on your Gardyn to continue germinating.
- Don't add any plant food yet!
- Check back daily to reassess your plants' growth until your count of yCubes reaches the next threshold.
If you answer, "About 2/3 of them."
- Keep all yCubes with true leaves on your Gardyn.
- Remove the remaining yCubes from your Gardyn and place in a Nursery or tray.
- If the removed yCubes are still wet, don’t add any water to the Nursery/tray.
- Place the Nursery/tray on your Gardyn tank to let the yCubes continue germinating while basking in the ambient heat generated by the lights.
- Cap off all of the now-empty yPods on your Gardyn with Pod Caps.
- Continue to Step 3: Adding Plant Food.
If you answer, "All of them!"
Congrats! This means you can continue to Step 3: Adding Plant Food.
Step 3: Adding Plant Food
Look at the Tank Care widget on your app's home screen to know how many gallons of water you can safely add to your tank, then match what you see to the table and corresponding directions.
Note that the plant food-to-water ratio you use for this first time (1 teaspoon:1 gallon or 1 teaspoon:1/2 gallon) is different from the ratio you'll need to top off your tank afterward. When topping off, always dissolve 1/2 teaspoon of plant food in 1 gallon of water at a time. Your app will remind you of the correct top-off ratio each week.
- Adding a little warm (not hot!) water can help dissolve the plant food faster.
- We suggest reusing common 1-gallon containers, such as water jugs, milk cartons, or other similar containers. Just make sure the container is clean before using it for the first time!
- If your plants are ready for plant food, they're also ready to thin - learn how here!
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