With rapidly changing weather patterns and incredible droughts hitting the US, water conservation becomes more important by the day. Review these questions to see how the FodderPro Feed System will help your farm reduce its water usage.
1) How much wastewater is normal?
The amount of wastewater can vary depending on your microclimate. The system comes with valves that allow you to adjust the water flow to each channel. If you have questions on how to set up the water for your system, please contact us.
2) How often does the water cycle through the system?
Currently, our systems in Iowa operate for 2 minutes every 2 hours. This is the standard, but you may need to adjust it based on your microclimate.
3) What volume of water should run through the system when it's on?
You can adjust the volume of water running through the system at any time. Determining if you are getting the correct amount of water requires some trial and error. The amount of water required by the seeds is based on the microclimate in which they are grown. Monitor your system closely for the first few weeks and make minor adjustments. You never want the flow of water to be so strong that your seeds are washing to the end of the channel, but you also don't want the flow so gentle that the seeds at the end of the channel are dry. You want consistent dampening of the seed throughout the entire 12' length and you do want a little water to drain away.
4) Is there any advantage to adding nutrients to the water?
Adding nutrients to the water is not necessary. Each seed has a "battery pack" of nutrients that will support its growth during the 7-day cycle. We ran trials with nutrients in the water and found that they provided a slight benefit to the fodder, but after running the calculations, we can't justify the additional investment.
5) Can vitamins and minerals be added to the water so that the fodder biscuits also replace concentrates?
Nutrients added to the water will not likely be absorbed by the plant. If you are interested in adding extra vitamins and minerals, this is best done through a top dress on the fodder before feeding.
6) Can I use well water or should I use public water that is treated?
You can use either. If you are using well water, we recommend testing the pH and a running it through a small filter.
7) What is the minimum temperature for the water?
We recommend that the water temperature to be above 50°F. The water should be as close to the ambient temperature of the fodder growing room as possible for best results. We have run trials with the water at lower temperatures and the germination rate was slightly decreased.
8) Is the water in the trays recycled?
No, the FodderPro Feed System does not recycle water. Each system uses a maximum of 4 gallons of water per 12' long channel per day. To put it in perspective, a ten-minute shower uses about 50 to 60 gallons of water, so these systems are quite efficient. The water that is drained from the system is commonly used to water animals as it has a great nutrient value. Download fodder water report.