Crops look good, taste bad


Hi farmers and foodies,

I have been experimenting with the PFC (v1) for some time now. I have grown basil, parsley and coriander. The plants look very healthy and have good texture but for some reason they seem to have a lack of taste…
Parsley should give a very strong smell while cutting and a typical taste when eating >> no smell, almost no taste. Same for basil and coriander.
So I am wondering what I did wrong. I use a nutricient that was made for hydroponics with a lot of additives and an NPK value of 6-3-8 ( Canna Aqua Vega, 2 component). I keep the EC level around 1400 and Ph between 6 -6,5.
ambient parameters: 6 hours sleep/ day, temp 27°C and 80-90% hum.
What is wrong here ?
Where do you think I should look for a solution ? All hints are appreciated !


Apparently, sun and heat are big factors in aromatic herbs. Check out this forum:

It also claims that over fertilization can reduce the flavor and aroma.


Thank you Thomas !
It just swings me back to my question about EC-values… is 1400 ‘over fertilization’ ? I am not sure about the light (sun-) level as well. My readings are SLIN 2810 and SLPA 62.00 for 18 hrs a day. How does that compare to mediterranean summers ?
My fertilizor guide mentions that I should have a Ph of 5,5 - 6,0… could that have an influence ?
Not too many experienced farmers/foodies here I’m afraid. We have to keep experimenting :slight_smile:



I have problem with the fertiliser. If I manage to mix a 1400 or around that, the ph is always 6,5.
Then I need to use ph - to drag the value down…

Its easier to do 2200 and then the ph is 5,9. But the high EC might also be the reason that the plants do not sprout…

I only managed to make spinach grow so far and that only 3 out of 21 sprouted :slight_smile: Taste was ok though :slight_smile:


Most plants do not need fertilizer to sprout, they need it after the true leaves have developed. Too much fertilizer at the start is often too harsh for the fragile roots. Once the true leaves have formed, a dilute fertilizer is good, but again, too much or too concentrated may harm the delicate roots.

Not having a food computer, I don’t know if you can program in the delay for fertilizer. It would be nice if the system could detect the first true leaves and act accordingly, but that seems like it would be a fairly significant sensor / software challenge. Typically, the leaves form in pairs so possibly some kind of leaf counter would work.

Check this post:


Sorry for the confusion… when I mentioned fertilizer I intended to speak of nutrition. this is what I am using at this moment: link to Canna Aqua
Don’t be alarmed by the name of the product… Yes, Canna had its roots in cannabis nutritions (as is legal here in NL) but they have grown into a large player on biological nutritions for hobby farmers and one of the few who have special compounds for aquaponics which compensates for the Ph variations.


Oh those cannabis farmers :slight_smile: They have quite a bit experience on Urban farming :slight_smile: