FAQ

All your hints and tips on how to grow in your Salad Table are right here.

Learn how to assemble your Salad Table right through to harvesting your first crop.

Please Note - Add 150ml of A + 150ml of B nutrient not the 300ml each as stated in the video below

You can grow almost anything. Salad Table owners are experimenting all the time with new ideas and new successes. Below are just a few of the varieties we grow ourselves and have also grown on a commercial scale on our farm,
Coriander, parsley, watercress, strawberries, thyme, dill, kale, oak leaf lettuce, coral lettuce, cos lettuce, butterhead lettuce, basil, tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, rosemary, choy, celery, wombok cabbage, cucumber, mint, lemon basil, mustard greens, silverbeet, endive, swiss chard, chives, lavender, marjoram, sage, beans, chillies, mizuna and more...Experiment, you be the farmer.

Growing your own seedlings has never been easier. Even if you have never tried it before, by following our simple instructions you will have nursery quality (or better) seedlings constantly all year round. The seeds and grow cubes that we provide are the same as we use on our farm.For the 36 plant Salad Table it is best to seed 9 plants per week. By doing this you will create a constant turn over of fresh produce on a 4 week rotation. When you have a flow going, you can seed, harvest and replant seedlings all on the same day and within minutes.

Follow these instructions
Cut or break off the required amount of Growning Cubes and place into a container. It is best to have in a single block of Grow Cubes, e.g. 3 x 3 together. They will hold the nutrient rich water more efficiently.
Place your seed, or seeds depending on what herb/vegetable you are growing into the predrilled hole in the Growing Cube. * Amount of seed required is listed on the back of your seed packet. If you use hardware / nursery seed packs you should use my general rule of thumb. For any large plants like lettuce, cabbage, tomatoes etc use 1 seed in your Grow Cube. If it's a bunch type plant such as parsley, coriander, mint, basil, and other herb types then use about 6 - 10 seeds.
Using the premixed nutrient from your 60 litre Nutrient Tank, wet down the Growing Cubes until they are soaked. Drain off excess water. You should not have any water pooling in the bottom of container.
It is very important not to have your seedlings sitting in a pool of nutrient as they will not grow. It is just as important not to let them dry out totally. You will soon find it easy to work out how moist or dry they are by the weight.
Place your containter in a warm position such as the kitchen window sill where they will recieve a few hours of sun a day. Morning or afternoon sun is perfect. If you put them outside, protect from extreme temperatures, wind, rain, frost and excess sun. When the seedlings are maturing you can leave them outside in a container with drain holes in case it rains. Remember, too much water will kill your seedlings. If you find your seeds are not germinating or going mouldy, try watering from below i.e. add water to your container and allow the water to draw up through the grow cube rather than watering from above. Ensure you tip out the excess water.
Re-water with nutrient from the Nutrient Tank when the Growing Cubes start to dry out. Do not overwater.
By letting them dry a little, the seedling will send out roots to find more nutrient. You will then feed them again to make them strong, followed by drying and roots get bigger. This proccess continues to make the plant strong, healthy and fast growing.
When your seedling is big enough, break it apart like a chocolate block and drop it straight into The Salad Table. In a few short weeks your big fresh healthy bunch will be ready to harvest.
It is as simple as that...
If you find growing your own seedlings is not for you, buy seedling punnets from your local nursery or market, gently wash off the dirt and place the seedling directly into the hole. Larger mature seedlings work better using this method as they are less likely to get washed down the channel. You may need to create a little shade for the first few days until they begin to establish.

We supply the same nutrient for The Salad Table as we use in our commercial operation. We have proven over the years that our nutrient is all that is required to grow anything and everything, all year round. Your nutrient levels are measured in what is called EC and is a very specific and technical process. But dont worry, we have taken all the guess work out for you. All you have do is follow the instructions below and in no time you will be harvesting your own fresh produce.
The nutrient (plant food) contains all the essential elements to keep plants thriving. The difference with soil gardening is that instead of being held in soil, all the essential elements are put in liquid form and fed directly to the root system. This makes it very simple to have full control over how much food your plants receive which results in faster growing healthy produce. A fast growing healthy plant is less prone to disease and insect attack.
Adding Nutrient

  • Add 150ml of nutrient A and 150ml of nutrient B to your 60 litre Salad Table tank.
  • Fill to the brim with water. We recommend rain water for optimum results. As farmers say - it is Gods nectar. It doesnt matter if you dont have access to rainwater as tap water is also fine.
  • As your plants start to grow you will see the water level start to drop. This is normal as the plants uptake water and nutrient. Other processes such as evaporation take place and this is especially evident during the warmer months or when your herbs and veggies are at their later stages of growth. With larger varieties and mature produce, it is normal to have to refill your nutrient tank every few days. In fact, growing the same amount of produce in soil uses up to 10 times the amount of water that The Salad Table uses.
  • When topping up the nutrient tank just add the proportionate amount of nutrient to water. For example, filling up from half way you will only need 75ml of A and 75ml of B
  • As a rule of thumb, use 2.5ml of nutrient A and 2.5ml of nutrient B per 1 litre of water.
  • We recommend you replenish the tank with a fresh batch of nutrient and water every 3 weeks. Wait for the tank to drop so as to reduce waste. Use the leftover nutrient on other garden plants and watch them grow!!!

Adjusting pH (VERY OPTIONAL)
It is believed that pH stands for "power of Hydrogen" although this term has been disputed for a long time. Simply put, it means how acidic or alkali something is, be it soil, water and even your skin.

  • 0 - being very acidic,
  • 14 -being very alkali
  • and 7 being neutral

When the pH is not at the proper level, plants will lose their ability to absorb some of the essential elements required for healthy growth. For all plants there is a particular pH level that will produce optimum results. This pH level will vary from plant to plant, but in general most plants prefer a slightly acidic growing environment between 5.5 and 6.5
Lucky for us most herbs and vegetables can survive quite well in a pH environment between 5.0 and 7.5 and it is very rare that your normal pH levels in The Salad Table would ever be outside of these readings.
In my commercial operation my pH levels are measured and adjusted by sensors and computers because there are many thousands of plants fighting for their share of essential elements. This can create large variations in pH levels.
My own Salad Tables have NEVER been pH adjusted and yet I have produced a continous supply of good quality, healthy and nutritious plants for my family and friends and neighbours and work colleagues and strangers for years. The reason for this is the continous addition of nutrient and water. This keeps your pH and EC at optimum levels. We recommend refilling your entire nutrient tank with a new batch of nutrient and water every 3 weeks as discussed above.
If you choose, it is very simple to keep an eye on your pH levels and much easier to check and adjust than soil pH. Most hardware stores and nurseries sell paper test strips or liquid pH test kits that are inexpensive. To adjust pH you simply add pH adjusters for up or down changes, also inexpensive and readily available.

Your Salad Table is best placed where it receives a decent amount of sun as plants will grow faster and you will get better quality produce. If you only recieve morning or afternoon sun this will still give you excellent quality fresh herbs and vegetables all year round. The Salad Table is very light and simple to move around your balcony or yard. As a large number of plant varieties are sensitive to frost, it is best to protect them in the cooler months if frost is a problem in your area. You can cover The Salad Table with netting or move it to a protected position to eliminate frost damage. Your pump uses very little power and we recommend running it 24/7. You can use a pump timer if you like with pump times on 1hr, off 1/2hr during the day and on 1hr, off 2hrs overnight.

We should have your Salad Table delivered to you within 5 business days if you live in the Brisbane, Ipswich or Toowoomba areas. All other deliveries throughout Australia usually take 5 - 7 business days after payment is recieved. Please contact us if you have any delivery questions.

In this video I show you how simple it is to plant your seedlings

See how simple it is to grow your own seedlings from scratch

Harvesting is clean, fast and so easy

We have complied a list of natural pest control spray recipes below. This is not an extensive list by any means and there is no guarantee that your plants will be totally bug free after application.

Scale and Mealybugs: An oil based spray can be very effective on these bugs as it will literally suffocate them when applied quite heavily. Mix 60ml (4 tbl spoons) of dishwashing detergent into one cup of vegetable oil. Use 1 part of this solution to about 20 parts water in your sprayer and spray directly on to affected plants.

Aphids, Caterpillars + Various Insects: Use two tablespoons of soap flakes (such as Lux) to one litre of warm water. Mix or shake thoroughly until completely dissolved and spray directly on to your plants. Reapply whenever these pests are visible.

Natural Insecticidal Spray: This mix should deal a blow to many types of insects. I suggest giving yourself a day or 2 before consuming your produce that has been sprayed, otherwise everything will taste like eye watering hot garlic.... Finely chop 3 cloves of garlic, 3 large onions and 3 hot chillies. Add to a large bowl of soapy water and mix in thoroughly, let sit overnight and then strain off the liquid the next day. Mix your brew into about 3 litres of water (I use a 3L milk container marked poison) This can then be sprayed directly on to your plants.

If you find that your homemade sprays are not working very well, there are many products available through retail outlets that contain stronger and more effective ingredients. Be aware that many of these products are not classed as organic or natural and may have withholding periods... for example, products with a 3 day withholding period should not be consumed for 3 days after application. This may also be the case with some registered organic sprays so be sure to read the instructions carefully.

COMING SOON - We are puting together a pest identification page complete with photos and a description of what to look for when determining what is attacking your plants.

In the event your Salad Table develops a leak there are a number of things to look for -

Check to make sure your plant roots haven't grown into the outlet causing a blockage and creating an overflow. This may appear to look like a leak at the outflow end cap. By pulling the roots out should give you a week or 2 extra growth time.

I have had frogs crawl into the outlet tube causing the same blockage problem as above. This leak is also usually accompanied by an awesome croaking sound!!!

If you have plants such as tomatoes, cucumbers etc or big old plants where the roots become quite large they can cause a dam anywhere along the channel. This may overflow and run silently along the underside of the channel and dripping at the lower end.

Large roots at the top end or at the start of the channel may cause a dam effect and appear as a leak at the inlet cap.

To solve these big root problems there are a few solutions you may consider. It might be time to remove the old plant and put a new seedling in its place, but if you would prefer to let it keep growing simply grab a piece of cutoff garden hose and tuck in beside the roots inside the channel. This will allow excess water to flow through but still allow enough flow to feed your plants. The length of hose will depend on the size or number of plants in the channel.

If you develop a leak on your VerTable ensure you carry out the steps above. If these fail to solve the problem check to ensure the 90 degree fittings are pushed tightly onto the Salad Table channel end caps. CAUTION - push evenly using your fingers and thumbs on the inside and outside of the end cap so you dont break the channel end caps. You will have to remove the channel lid to acheive this.

In the unlikely event that your end caps develop a leak, run a light smear of sealer such as silastic to the affected area inside and out.

 

Setting Up

  1. Install the 4 legs onto the prefabricated square base and tap lightly into place until seated.
  2. IMPORTANT – the base has a low end and a high end. It is important to note the lower end when fitting the Salad Table top.
  3. Place the Salad Table top onto the 4 upright legs ensuring the drainage end is toward the lower end of the base. Tap into place until seated.
  4. Place the nutrient tank under the drainage end of the Salad Table and place the drainage pipe into the hole in the lid.
  5. Connect the supplied 13mm poly pipe to the pump. Place the pump into the nutrient tank and screw the threaded fittings together.
  6. Add 150ml A and 150ml B nutrient to 60L tank. Shake nutrient container well before use. (Rule of thumb is to add 2.5ml of A and 2.5ml of B per 1L of water)
  7. Fill the 60L nutrient tank with fresh water until full (rainwater recommended if available) and connect pump power cable to a power outlet.
  8. Your Salad Sable is now ready to turn on and add seedlings.

Position

Your Salad Table is best positioned in full sun. It has been designed with an inbuilt slope and is best suited for a flat level surface. If placed on an uneven surface, ensure there is a slight down angle towards the drainage end of the table so water doesn’t pool at the inlet end.

Nutrient

Your Salad Table nutrient is specifically blended to suit all phases of plant growth, all year round.

Rate of application is 150ml of A nutrient and 150ml of B nutrient per 60 Litres of water. Shake nutrient containers well before use.

Every 2or 3 weeks drain nutrient tank and refill with a fresh batch of nutrient and water. Rainwater is recommended. Top up tank as required, ensuring water level does not drop below pump intake. Add nutrient as needed. A general rule of thumb is to add 2.5ml of A nutrient and 2.5ml of B nutrient to every 1 Litre of water when topping up. Water/nutrient usage will increase during warmer months and as plants mature.

Pump

Your pump uses very little power and we recommend running it 24/7. You can use a pump timer if you like with pump times on 1hr, off 1/2hr during the day and on 1hr, off 2hrs overnight. This is a simple guide and you may want to experiment with your own times.

Pump filter must be cleaned regularly. Failure to do so will void all warranty. To clean, remove inlet cover and foam filter. Rinse foam filter in warm soapy water. Reassemble and ensure water is flowing into channels. We recommend cleaning the filter every 2 weeks or more frequently if debris enters the system.   Refer to pump manufacturer’s directions for maintenance and operation.

Do not let pump run dry. A pump that runs dry will void all warranty.

Cleaning The Salad Table

Remove lids to clean inside channel. Use a bristle brush and cloth with soapy water to eliminate any debris. Ensure contaminated water runs to waste and not into nutrient tank. Clean nutrient tank regularly with a cloth and warm soapy water.

Growing Your Seedlings

Using the supplied seedling blocks, add your chosen seed to the predrilled hole at the top.

Place blocks into an open container and add fresh water so that the blocks are moist. Drain excess water off. Seedlings will not grow if they are too wet.

Place seedlings in a well-lit (sunny), warm location and keep moist, NOT WET. Ensure that NO water pools in the container. The seed cubes draw water up and you can feel by weight when they start to dry out. It is important to let them dry out (not too dry) as they will grow stronger, faster and be less prone to insects and disease.

Once the seeds begin to germinate, water the seedlings with your premixed nutrient from the 60 litre nutrient tank observing the watering procedure above. NOT TOO WET…

As the seedlings begin to mature, give them more direct sunlight each day. If your seedlings become leggy (long and spindly) this means they need more direct sunlight.

If you have purchased the standard Salad Table containing 36 growing holes, it is recommended to seed about 9 seedlings per week during the spring/summer months. Plant more seedlings if you have purchased a Salad Table with more holes or as required.

You should expect a seedling to be ready to transplant into The Salad Table after about 4 weeks . This will vary depending on location, season, weather, temperature and plant variety.

Seedlings should be ready for consumption after about 4 weeks. Again, this depends on location, season, weather, temperature and plant variety.

 

The Vertable –

Assembly Instructions

Setting Up

  1. Install the upper and lower aluminium cross bars on to the main uprights to form the frame. NOTE – attach the bar with the Salad Table sticker to the top of the frame facing to the front.
  2. Loosely insert nuts and bolts to the inside of each bracket leaving enough thread to slide the channel lip under each bolt head. Ensure nut is on the bottom.
  3. Place the 4 channels onto the brackets making sure the lip slides under the bolt heads… NOTE – Ensure the channel with the small black feed pipe is placed on the top row with the feed pipe at the higher end.
  4. Insert the remainder of the nuts and bolts to the front of each bracket. Centralise each channel and then tighten bolts with a screwdriver. DO NOT OVERTIGHTEN.
  5. Remove all 4 lids and place behind channels.
  6. CAUTION - Gently attach (DO NOT PUSH TOO HARD) the supplied pipes to the ends of the top and 2nd channel, 2nd and 3rd channel and the 3rd and 4th channels. The remaining pipe with the open end (outlet pipe) should then be gently attached to the opposite end of the 4th channel with the pipe facing down. To seat all pipes, place 4 fingers inside the end of each channel and gently press the pipes into place using 4 fingers and 2 thumbs. Do not apply too much pressure. Repeat this process if any leaks occur when the pump is running.
  7. Refit all 4 lids
  8. Place your nutrient container below the outlet pipe.
  9. Attach the long 13mm feeder pipe by screwing the male and female fittings together.
  10. Place the pump into the nutrient tank and fit the feeder pipe onto the pump.
  11. Add 150ml A and 150ml B nutrient to your 60L tank. Shake nutrient container well before use.
  12. Fill the 60L nutrient tank with fresh water until full and connect pump power cable to a power outlet. Place the lid on top allowing the feeder pipe, return pipe and power cord to pass through the hole.
  13. Your Vertical Salad Table is now ready to turn on and add seedlings. We recommend running your pump 24/7 as it uses very small amounts of power.

 

Position

Your Salad Table is best positioned when it receives plenty of sun. At least 4 hours a day will give good results. It has been designed with an inbuilt slope on each channel and is only suited for a flat level surface.

For extra stability, attach the top of your vertical Salad Table to a wall or fence.

 

Nutrient

Your Salad Table nutrient is specifically blended to suit all phases of plant growth, all year round.

Rate of application is 150ml of A nutrient and 150ml of B nutrientper 60 Litres of water. Shake nutrient containers well before use.

Every 2 or 3 weeks drain your nutrient tank and refill with a fresh batch of nutrient and water. Top up tank as required, ensuring water level does not drop below pump intake. Add nutrient as needed. A general rule of thumb is to add 25ml of A nutrient and 25ml of B nutrient to every 10 Litres of water when topping up. Water/nutrient usage will increase during warmer months and as plants mature.

 

Pump

Pump filter must be cleaned regularly. Failure to do so will void all warranty. To clean, remove inlet cover and foam filter (if fitted). Rinse foam filter in warm soapy water. Reassemble and ensure water is flowing into channels. We recommend cleaning the filter every 2 weeks or more frequently if debris enters the system. Refer to pump manufacturer’s directions for maintenance and operation.

Do not let pump run dry. A pump that runs dry will void all warranty.

 

Cleaning The Salad Table

Remove lids to clean inside channel. Use a bristle brush and/or cloth with soapy water to eliminate any debris. Ensure contaminated water runs to waste and not into nutrient tank. Clean nutrient tank regularly with fresh water.  

 

Growing Your Seedlings

Using the supplied seedling grow cubes, add your chosen seed to the predrilled hole at the top.

Place grow cubes into an open container and add fresh water so that they are moist. Drain excess water off.

Note - You may soak the Grow Cubes with water before adding seeds as an alternate option.

Seedlings will not grow if they are too wet.

Place seedlings in a well-lit (sunny), warm location and keep moist, NOT WET. Ensure that NO water pools in the container. The grow cubes draw water up and you can feel by weight when they start to dry out. It is important to let them dry out (not too dry) as they will grow stronger, faster and be less prone to insects and disease.

Once the seeds begin to germinate, water the seedlings with your premixed nutrient from the 60 litre nutrient tank observing the watering procedure above. NOT TOO WET…

As the seedlings begin to mature, give them more direct sunlight each day. If your seedlings become leggy (long and spindly) this means they need more direct sunlight.

You should expect a seedling to be ready to transplant into The Salad Table after about 4 weeks. This will vary depending on location, season, weather, temperature and plant variety.

Seedlings should be ready for consumption after about 4 weeks. Again, this depends on location, season, weather, temperature and plant variety.

 

Visit – our website www.thesaladtable.com.au for video instructions, handy pictures and lots of information.

To order nutrient and grow cubes please visit our online store at -

www.thesaladtable.com.au

“Remember, there are no rules – experiment, and enjoy”

Denis Matthews

Founder and Director – The Salad Table Pty Ltd