The idea of soilless gardening, or more commonly known as hydroponics, has been around for thousands of years. This concept has been used by the ancient Chinese to build their floating gardens and the ancient Babylonians to create their famous hanging gardens.
Now, if you’re planning to build your own garden, you should consider building a hydroponic one. You may want to visit the website of Hydro World for your hydroponic gardening needs. Here are 9 advantages of using a hydroponic system in your garden.
No soil required
If the quality of soil hinders your plants from growing, then hydroponics might be the best option for you. Hydroponic systems don’t require fertile soil for your plants to grow properly. Instead, they need inert media that act as root system supports.
Here are some commonly used inert media:
- Peat moss
- Clay pellets
Minimal space required
As stated above, hydroponic systems don’t require soil to grow your plants. Plants usually get their food through their roots that spread out in the soil. However, in hydroponics, the roots are directly exposed to oxygenated nutrients and vital minerals. This enables you to build a garden with minimal space requirements or in urban areas where open spaces are hard to come by.
Here are some commonly used spaces for this type of garden:
- Building rooftops
- Spare bedrooms
Conventional gardens usually require more maintenance than a hydroponic garden, especially when you’re dealing with weeds. Maintaining a weed-free garden can be a very time-consuming task even for the experienced gardeners. Eliminating the need for fertile soil also eliminates your weed problems.
Here are some maintenance tips for you:
- Maintain proper system temperature.
- Provide adequate aeration.
- Check your equipment frequently.
Better climate control
Having hydroponic systems allows you total climate control – light intensity, humidity, air composition, and temperature. This allows you to grow plants all year long without considering seasonal changes.
Here are some hydroponic climate control facts you need to consider:
- Most plants have an optimal temperature of 60 °F to 79 °F.
- Use full-spectrum lights to power up plant photosynthesis.
- Plants will consume more CO2 under high light conditions.
Less water consumption
Hydroponic gardens usually use about 9 times less water than conventional ones. Plants grown in hydroponic systems only take up water necessary for its growth, and the excess water is recirculated into the system. Water loss can only occur when a leak in the system is present or in the form of evaporation.
Here are some water-saving tips:
- Use rainwater to top off reservoirs.
- Prevent further water loss by recovering water vapor through condensers.
Better nutrient control
Hydroponic systems allow you complete control of your plant nutrition. Growers can give the exact amount of nutrients a particular plant needs in its current growth stage. Additionally, the excess nutrients mixed in the water are recirculated in the system.
Here are some tips for better nutrient control:
- Avoid the use of tap water.
- Control your nutrient temperature.
- Change the contents of your nutrient tank frequently.
Better pH control
In hydroponics, all the minerals needed by your plants are mixed in the water. This allows you to adjust and measure the pH levels of the mixture more easily and conveniently to ensure the optimal growth of your plants.
Here are some pH control tips:
- Keep your pH between 5.5 and 6.5.
- Calibrate and test your pH meters regularly.
- Do regular EC and pH checks.
If your plants are grown in their ideal conditions, they are provided specific amounts of nutrients, and their root systems are in direct contact with their food source, then they will generally grow faster than the plants planted in soil as your plants will not waste energy searching the soil for washed-away nutrients.
Here are some fast-growing plants to try for your hydroponic garden:
- Herbs (marjoram, basil, peppermint, and oregano)
- Leafy greens (mustard greens, kale, watercress, Swiss chard, and spinach)
Better disease and pest control
As hydroponics require no soil to grow plants, your garden is less vulnerable to pests such as groundhogs, gophers, and birds and disease-causing microorganisms such as Rhizoctonia, Pythium, and Fusarium. Additionally, if you’re growing your plants indoors, it will be easier for you to manipulate the surrounding variables to avoid diseases and pests.
Here are some tips for controlling pests and diseases in your hydroponic garden:
- Grow disease-resistant varieties.
- Avoid overcrowding.
- Regularly clean your tools.
Hydroponic gardening may offer a lot of advantages, but there are some downsides to consider, too. However, you can always overcome these downsides with proper planning, research, and experience. Considering these advantages of hydroponics. This type of gardening is highly effective compared with its soil counterpart.