Some of us may wonder – What is hydroponics? Hydroponic gardening is an up-and-coming alternative to growing plants the old fashioned way in soil. Hydroponic systems cultivate plants using water enriched with nutrients instead of growing with soil and getting the nutrients from the soil itself. This form of growing has been proven to grow fruits and vegetables faster and bigger allowing them to mature more quickly giving an increased yield and size. While most people were hesitant about growing with hydroponics in the past, the more recent strides in hydroponic farming have made using this method easier than ever.
The key of hydroponics is being able to directly feed the root system with water and nutrients more quickly and thoroughly than by growing in soil. The water in hydroponic systems is infused with the right balance of nutrients to promote healthy and rapid root growth. The other benefit to using this type of system (when not nourishing the roots with nutrient rich water), the roots are exposed to an abundance of oxygen thus allowing them to be able to absorb nutrients more efficiently. Being able to give the root system a balance of both nutrient rich water and oxygen leads them to maturing more quickly and bearing more produce at a rate rarely seen by soil growing.
With the benefits of producing fruits and vegetables at an astounding rate, hydroponic growing is also environmental friendly. No matter what kind of hydroponic system you are using, the water being used is constantly being recycled and reused meaning you use significantly less water to maintain your hydroponic garden when compared to traditional gardening. Another environmental benefit is that hydroponic systems are relatively free from chemicals and pesticides. This is mainly because most indoor pests breed in soil you wont find them in hydroponic systems.
There are various techniques which can be used with hydroponic systems to deliver nutrient-rich water to the root system. Growing with plants which are self-contained usually requires the use of an irrigation system that drips nutrient-laden water to the root system. Another way of delivery within a self-contained system is to use an emitter which sprays the water directly onto the roots. A further method which can be used is by growing a tray of plants in a row within a trough of sorts which is watered from below. They tray is filled with water and allowed to sit for a short amount of time and later all the excess water is drained – this method is called the ebb and flood system. These are a few of the types of hydroponic systems available but the specific type depends on the growers needs.
So now when you ask yourself What is hydroponics?, you now have a general knowledge and basic concept of the subject and when you go to select a hydroponic system for yourself, you can find the right kind to fit your needs best. Not all systems are designed for the average grower and some may be a little more complicated to operate then others, but if you have common sense and a willingness to learn, then every system available could work wonders for you.