Agriculture, Food & Beverage, Innovation, Technology

Hydroponics: The Ultimate Way to Grow Plants without Soil at Home

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Hydroponics and hydroculture

Generally, people who are not aware of biological developments which have taken place over the decades are astonished by the fact that plants can be grown without soil. The terms like hydroponics and aeroponics sound unfamiliar. When you don’t have a garden area and wish to grow some plants but are afraid of your house getting messed up with soil yards, the simplest solution is using a hydroponics grow kit.

Introduction to Hydroponics and its relation to Hydroculture

The procedure of growing plants in soilless or aquatic medium is called hydro culture. The nutrients to the plants in hydro culture are distributed by the means of water.

In hydroponics, the growing medium is inert – derived from rocks, aggregated clays and may not be water based. The roots are submerged in a liquid nutrient solution therefore sometimes Hydro culture is also termed as passive hydroponics.

Why and How To Grow Plants without Soil?

For people who love gardening, hydroponics has now become an efficient way of growing more plants in lesser space. When sometimes you do not have good soil that supports plant growth or wants plants in indoor spaces like drawing room for the purpose of decoration, hydroponic plants are the best option available.

While growing hydroponics, monitoring the water level is one of the most significant factors that should be taken care of. It should neither be above the growing medium nor so less that the plants root are unable to get the required nutrients from the water.

The vegetables and fruits grown hydroponically are healthier as they are not treated with insecticides, pesticides, bacteria and no weeds grow around them to hinder the supply of nutrients.

Here are the essential steps you need to follow for growing plants using hydroponics in your home-

1. First of all, you need to plant your seedling in a static and inert medium example -rock wool. The rock wool is available in solid cubes form; place your cubes in small pots or container that is filled with a little amount of water in order to maintain the moisture of the seeds. After the plants grow a few inches tall they are ready to place into hydroponic container or reservoir.

2. It is recommended that you keep the rock wool setup in a place where they could receive maximum light, air, and warm temperature. In case there is no sunlight accessible for your plants, you can use hydroponics grow light. These artificial lights provide plants a light spectrum which is close to the natural environment required for sustainable plant growth.

3. If the container has a lid, make holes equal to the number of your seedlings otherwise use a Styrofoam sheet. You may cover your lid / Styrofoam with a hardware wire net and coat it with asphalt based paint for better results.

4. Add nutrient solution equal to the quantity of water then test its pH using an indicator. Most of the plants need a slightly acidic solution; if the pH is above 7 you may add a few drops of sulfuric acid or sodium hydroxide if the pH is below 5.5.

5. Now it’s time to move your seedlings into the hydroponic grow system. Before you place seedlings into the system it is essential to remove debris from the roots.

6. Punch the hardware wires near the holes and transport your seedlings in such a manner that the roots are submerged into the nutrient solution.

7. Use an aerator to maintain the oxygen level as proper respiration in roots will only take place when oxygen bubbles pass from the aerator into the water.

To perform these steps you need to have some basic supplies in your home which are listed below-

• Seedlings of the plant

• Rock Wool plate or cubes

• A reservoir or big container

• Styrofoam

• Scissors

• Wire net – preferably hardware wire or chicken wire

• Nutrient solution

• pH indicator paper

• Aerator

• Asphalt based paint

For beginners it is fun to try hydroponics as watching the plants grow in your home without soil for the first time can be a delightful experience. Here are a few tips you need to keep in mind:-

a. The container you use should not be porous as they can contaminate the water solution. Also you should check that poisonous materials like lead, asbestos, etc. are not used in manufacturing of container.

b. It is better that you avoid pots made of plastic but you can use black plastic pots in case your plants do not need high intensity light.

If you are unable to find a plant growing inert medium, you don’t have to worry because you can purchase the best quality nutrient mediums and hydroponic grow systems from Hydroponic Systems UK online stores.

 

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