Tips for using capillary mats

Tips for using capillary matsMany companies that produce pot plants use capillary mats for irrigation. Capillary mats divide the water from the bottom so that the plants are irrigated equally. The advantage of irrigation from the bottom of the plant is a better development of the roods in the pot. For the best result its important that the capillary mats are placed in the right position and are used in the right way. In this article you will receive some important tips from our product specialist.

Placing capillary mats

Capillary mats are delivered on a roll. In most cases when you place them you will need multiple lanes next to each other to cover the entire area. In this case make sure that the lanes overlap each other 5 to 10 centimeters. This way there will be no openings between the lanes and every plant will get a sufficient amount of water and nutrition. 

Watering the capillary mats

Before putting the mats to use you have to make sure that they have been covered with water with a low surface tension. A low surface tension of the water makes that the water will soak in well. U can test if the surface tension is low enough pouring a cup of rain water on the mats. If the water does not soak in fast enough then the surface tension is to high. You can lower the surface tension by adding a soap based product to the water. 

After the mats have been watered, they can be taken into use. Note: new capillary mats need some time to stabilize completely. So please know that the results of new mats are not entirely stable and optimal in the beginning. 

Keeping the capillary mats wet

Now the capillary mats are ready to be used. Make sure that the capillary mats never dry out entirely. Chemical and other substances can extract from the capillary mat when it is dried out. This will have a negative reaction on the lifespan of the capillary mat. Always check that the mats will be watered in time.

Note: when the capillary mats will be used for multiple crops we advise that you keep the mats wet enough during the crop rotation. This will make it easier to start with a new crop, because the water distribution will be stable.

Cleaning during crop rotation

If you use the capillary mats for multiple crops, make sure that you clean the mats during the crop rotation. This way you prevent damaging organisms from the old crop to be taken in by the new crop through the capillary mats.
There are two ways to clean your capillary mats:
  1. Wash & disinfect: wash the capillary mat with clean and pure water (note: never use a high pressure hose, this will damage the mats) and disinfect them with a cleaning product like Menno ter Forte.
  2. Steaming: you can also choose to steam the mats.

Storing capillary mats

When you have bought capillary mats and you don’t intend to use them instantly make sure to store them in a dry, cool and dark place.

Sonja Buurman
Questions regarding the use of capillary mats

If you have any questions about the use of capillary mats or you want us to advise you please contact our product specialist Sonja Buurman or use the form you find underneath. 

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