Matrix Media™ – what is it and what is it used for?
If you have been reading about hydroponic growing recently then you will have come across all different types of growing media, and the pros and cons of each. We are often asked about the specific media we use in ZipGrow™ systems, called Matrix Media™, and why we use this over different available options.
About Matrix Media™
We’ve ensured the safety of our media material. We know that our growers care about sustainability and the safety of their produce and that’s why we’ve developed a media that’s both environmentally responsible and safe.
Our media is constructed from recycled PET-1 (water bottles) without any BPA, and each poly fiber is inclosed by a binder which not only increases the longevity of your media but also minimizes contact with the water in your system.
Matrix Media™ is lightweight, flexible and reusable
Matrix Media™ is 93% air, which helps our ZipGrow™ Towers stay light enough to move for harvesting and replanting, making maintenance super simple, whether you’re growing at home, in an indoor farm, or in a greenhouse.
Matrix Media™ inserts also give growers peace of mind knowing media can flex and bend without surrendering its structural properties. You can fold the media inserts in the opposite direction every time you use them so that they age evenly, and pulling them in and out of the towers is not difficult. All Matrix Media™ comes with a one year warranty, but our farmers can often use it for three years or longer before having to replace it.
Biological Surface Area
Perhaps the biggest benefit of Matrix Media™ is it’s insanely high BSA, or Biological Surface Area. BSA is the amount of surface area inside your system that microbes can live on. BSA is very important in hydroponic and aquaponic systems because these microbes are the engines of a healthy system.
Thus, a media with extremely high BSA per square inch assists in your system’s overall health.
When designing our ZipGrow™ Towers, one of our goals was to not only grow more in a small space, but also maintain healthy, stable microbe populations to maximize nutrient cycling.
When compared to the BSA of crushed granite (21 ft² per cubic foot), or even pea gravel (85 ft² per cubic foot), Matrix Media’s high BSA (290 ft² per cubic foot) gives your system’s microbes a lot of space to grow and thrive.
The open space in the media (also called “void space”) also allows for incredibly high percolation rates. Basically the water moves through your media and past your roots quicker than traditional media.
With fast-moving water, you can not only increase dissolved oxygen but also abolish potentially deadly anaerobic zones.
Anaerobic zones – the pockets around your roots deprived of oxygen needed for sustaining life – cause the roots to starve and die. The more anaerobic zones you have in your system, the more decomposition, which produces nasty compounds like hydrogen sulfide as well allowing a number of pathogens.
Matrix Media™ creates a highly aerobic environment for your plant’s roots leading to better growth.
You might think that with all that air in the media, the temperature fluctuates a lot, but that is simply not true.
ZipGrow™ Towers stabilize root zone temperatures better than any other media-based techniques and here’s why: the continuous flow of nutrient solution – whether hydroponic or aquaponic – actually creates consistent temperatures and helps roots truly thrive. This is especially valuable in hot climates, where the percolation creates a sort of swamp cooler so that your towers don’t overheat.
You can read more about Matrix Media™ in our online store or get in touch with us with any questions.
Questions? Get In Touch!
We’re happy to provide answers to any questions you have, feel free to give us a call, send us an email, or send a message through our Get In Touch form.
Address: 425F Fourth Street West | Cornwall, Ontario Canada