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Hydroponic System: A basic idea

basics of hydroponics

A hydroponic system is very popular nowadays. Experts are using this system constantly but for many, it is still a mystery. Here in this article, we will try to demystify the system for you. so if you are interested you can try it out.

What is Hydroponic System?

Hydro means water. Hydroponic refers to a system where water is used as a source of nutrients to grow plants and no dirt or soil is used. Generally, nutrients are added to the water and then the water is circulated through the soilless growth media so that the plants are not deprived of any nutrients.

Hydroponics system basics

Advantages of Hydroponic System:

There are several benefits of this system when compared with the traditional way of gardening. Here are some of them:

  • Little to no dirt is involved in the hydroponic growing system.
  • This is system is environmental as it helps to stop topsoil erosion.
  • Hydroponic gardening uses water and light to grow vegetables and fruits. Water in hydroponic gardening stays in the system and can be reused. So you don’t need a constant fresh water supply.
  • Hydroponics is a great option if you lack yard space or have a tiny balcony. It also lends itself really well to indoor gardening.
  • Hydroponic growing means less time spent and less money wasted on unnecessary materials.
  • You can grow your vegetables and fruits all year round.
  • You also need not spend hours weeding and tilling the soil.
  • In hydroponics, the yields on crops are much higher and the plants will generally produce richer, brighter, and more nutritious fruits compared to a traditional form of gardening.
  • The growth rate is faster than traditional soil-based gardening. The roots receive good aeration and can absorb nutrients much faster than when in the soil.

Some of the plants which thrive in this system are Spinach, Lettuce, Cilantro, Tomato, Peppers, Strawberries etc.

Types of Hydroponics:

There are two popular hydroponic systems:

1.    Wick system or the passive system: This is by far the easiest and least expensive way. Here you will have a reservoir filled with water and nutrients and another container where you will have the growth media (you can use coconut coir, perlite or vermiculite for this) and plants along with it. The two containers are connected by a wick (you can use a lantern wick for this). The nutrient solution passes through the wick to the growing media. Though it is a very simple system, it will not work very well for water-hungry plants.

2.    Ebb & flow system or the active system: This system is a very popular one. Unlike the earlier system here a pump is attached to the system. The pump first floods the growing media by nutrient rich solution and then drain back the water into the reservoir. This system also helps to provide the soil with fresh oxygen which benefits the root growth. The most popular growing media in this system is Rockwool. This system works well with every plant though the cost is much higher than the first one.

In most cases, a hydroponic system uses an inorganic or chemical form of nutrients. But as an organic grower, we always recommend you to use organic fertilizers. One of the most interesting ways to use organic fertilizers is switching your hydroponics to an Aquaponic system. Read our earlier article on Aquaponic system here.

We hope this information is will help the beginners to get an idea about the system. If you are a hydroponic grower we request you to share your experiences with us. If you have any suggestions use the comment box below.

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Readers Comments (3)

  1. I'll have to look into creating a Wick system. Are they pretty common or is this trend still gaining traction? I wonder why there aren't more people that garden this way, it seems incredibly efficient. Thanks for sharing these tips with us! http://www.eppinghydroponics.com.au/about-us.html

  2. Hydroponics are very popular nowadays. I am sure that many people would love to know about this. Great idea for sharing this here!

  3. It is an growing phenomenon, Hydroponic system seem to be useful. I have come to learn lot about this from this article. Thanks!

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