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greenhouse

The secret to faster growing plants:

  • Test CO2, temperature and humidity levels
  • Make changes
  • Test again

Greenhouse, indoor gardener and hydroponic growers know the benefit of increased carbon dioxide levels – as well as proper temperature and humidity – for plant growth. Plants combine CO2 with light, water and nutrients for photosynthesis, the chemical reaction that feeds plant growth.

Even if a plant has the perfect amount of light, water and nutrients, the limiting factor in the process of photosynthesis will be the amount of carbon dioxide available.

Fortunately for greenhouse growers and indoor gardeners, hundreds of scientific experiments have been conducted to determine optimal CO2 levels. Studies show:

  • Greenhouse-grown vegetables like tomatoes, cucumbers and lettuce show earlier maturity, larger fruit size, greater numbers of fruit, a reduction in cropping time, and yield increases averaging 20 to 50 percent.
  • Greenhouse-grown flowers such as roses and carnations grow more quickly, have longer stems, and larger, more colorful flowers. Yield increases averaged 12 percent.
  • Flowers and ornamental plants propagated by cuttings, such as geraniums, show faster growth, more extensive rooting, and greater plant heights. (US Dept. of Agriculture)

After you’ve spent hundred – or even thousands – of dollars creating the perfect growing environment, only a real-time CO2 monitor guarantees that your plants are actually getting the right amount of CO2.