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Hydroponic Kava

Kapmcrunk

The Kaptain of Crunk
KavaForums Founder
Has anyone tried growing it hydroponically? I wonder if it would cut down on the 3-5 year wait until maturity.
I believe other people may chime in here, and I think it's been attempted, but continual contact with water burns the roots or something negative. I bet @Alia or @Gourmet Hawaiian Kava could probably expand on that a bit more.
 

Alia

'Awa Grower/Collector
I have seen very young 'awa plants being grown in flowing, nutrition-added water which did not survive longer that a few months due to roots staying too wet.
However that's not the full story on "Hydroponics" which can, usually, includes- "Growing Mediums-The purpose of a growing medium is to aerate and support the root system of the plant and to channel the water and nutrients. Different growing mediums work well in different types of hydroponic systems. A fast draining medium, such as Hydrocorn or expanded shale works well in an ebb and flow type system".
That said-- a growing medium such as volcanic cinder or sterile sphagnum moss can work fine however I have only done this for the 1st few months of a plants life and have no experience beyond that because I'd transplant the "hydroponic" to a soil, outdoor environment. Regardless, I doubt anything can increase the percentage of kavalactones except time, age.
 

Gourmet Hawaiian Kava

Kava Expert
Kava Vendor
It is hard to grow kava with hydroponics but when I was teaching kava at a Hawaiian immersion school, we devised a way to grow kava hydroponically and it works great. We had a Hiwa growing for over 18 months. It is hard to do and too much work and time to make it work for production.
Here is a few pictures. Aloha.

Chris
The pictures shows the Hiwa and the students taking different measurements and collecting other data.
'Awa class 001.jpg
'Awa school 1 001.jpg
 

Alia

'Awa Grower/Collector
That is a seriously healthy looking Hiwa! Is this the Immersion School in Kea'au? I remember seeing a hydroponic Hiwa growing there when I taught an 'awa class in the 1990s'. The main Nurseryman/Kahuna there was named Sam (last name started with N?) . Nicest guy, has since passed away. I have an image of the exposed roots of that plant in some kind of pebble?? media but just cannot recall the details. Great memories, thanks Chris.
 

Gourmet Hawaiian Kava

Kava Expert
Kava Vendor
That is a seriously healthy looking Hiwa! Is this the Immersion School in Kea'au? I remember seeing a hydroponic Hiwa growing there when I taught an 'awa class in the 1990s'. The main Nurseryman/Kahuna there was named Sam (last name started with N?) . Nicest guy, has since passed away. I have an image of the exposed roots of that plant in some kind of pebble?? media but just cannot recall the details. Great memories, thanks Chris.
Yes that is the one in Keaau. Yes I miss Anakala Lanakila. He was a very nice man. He was from Niihau.
We found the answer to growing hydroponically was in Waipio, we looked at the way the kava would grow down from the hillside shooting roots to the river below. That gave us the idea to raise the kava up out of the water to let the soft roots lignify and harden, at that point they were allowed to reach for and grow into the nutrient solution. If we did not harden the roots then the plant would die. Aloha.

Chris
 
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