Do you want a nice looking natural flower with plant or a bonsai in your favorite place? Do you want to avoid soil or dirt for making a garden? The hydroponic system is the answer for all your hesitation for planting and gardening. It is an old and ancient system to grow plants without soil which was reinvented a century ago.
It allows the gardener to control the life cycle of plants by controlling the nutrient level and pH of the water. So, it controls the cost of gardening and gives you the actual things you need. Hydroponics is one of the best gifts for the people who love gardening.
History of Hydroponics
The hanging gardens of Babylon and the floating gardens of China are the ancient examples of hydroponics. People could grow plants thousands of years ago. The system of hydroponics is standardized in the modern era. William Frederick Gericke, a professor of the University of California, claimed that he could grow plants only with water and nutrients. His colleagues refused the claim and insisted that without soil nothing would grow.
Gericke proved the idea by growing tomatoes without soil. He used only water and nutrients for growing plants. After the experiment, he left the university without publishing any document of his famous work. He named the method by hydroponics. Hoagland and Arnon researched after him and invented much other hydroponics of plants successfully.
What is Hydroponics Growing System?
Hydroponics growing system is the system of growing plants without soil. This practice uses only water, nutrients, and a growing medium. Hydroponics is the association of two words hydro and ponos. Hydro means water and ponos mean gardening without soil. Hydroponics is a Latin word which meaning is growing plants in water and without soil. Hydroponics use a growing medium such as peat moss, clay pellets, perlite without using soil. An essential requirement for hydroponics is to allow the plant roots to come direct contact with water.
The plant must access the oxygen without which plant can’t grow at all. Most people believe that hydroponics is the practice of growing plants without any medium. But actually, it is N.F.T, one kind of hydroponics which allows gardening without any medium. N.F.T is getting popular among the people for the rapid growth of plants where the soil isn’t available.
Parts of Hydroponic System
Hydroponics is the combination of some essential parts. A missing of the parts can lead the system working ineffectively.
The growing system is a part of the hydroponic system in which plant roots grow. It helps roots to get nutrients from the source. Nutrition helps trees grow well. Growing chamber also gives support to the root to keep it safe from light, heat or pests. Excess light or heat can damage the roots. Damaged roots cause the fruit or flowers drop. Pests harm the roots and other organs of the plants to grow it healthy. You can find different sizes and shapes of growing medium according to your choice.
The different hydroponic system requires a different growing medium for different plants. As the roots are bigger, so space is more. But never try a metal container as growing medium. Metal container corrodes with the nutrients and can harm the plants. By the way, you can use your used food cans or food container for growing medium.
A reservoir is a tank that contains the nutrient solution. The nutrient solution is the mixer of-of nutrients with the water. Each hydroponic growing system has its own pumping system. Some hydroponic systems need a nutrient solution for all time where some don’t require. Growing medium need a nutrient solution at a stretch and for this, it is pumped without any disturbance. A reservoir can be any kind of container that must be leak-free. It can be plastic or any other container except metal container.
The metal container can react with the nutrient element and make the solution polluted. As light harm the solution, the container must be light proof. You can make any container light proof by painting on it. A slight amount of light can help microorganisms to grow in.
A submersible pump is used to pump the nutrient solution from the container or reservoir. It is an electromagnet system that pulls water and nutrient mixer to the plant roots. You can find it any recommended store with different size. But a filter must be there on it if not, you can make it by furnace filter screen.
A delivery system is a quite simple part of the hydroponic growing system. It is customizable and users can customize by own choice. A delivery system is nothing but plumbing the nutrient solution to the roots and back to the reservoir. It is generally made of PVC tube and connectors. Every kind of hydroponic grow system must be cleaned as they can slow the water flow and make it malfunction.
You need a timer whether you build any kind of hydroponic system for your plants. You need a timer for either controlling submersible pump or controlling light access. So, you have to control the artificial light if you want to use artificial light instead of natural light to grow plants. Accessing of light according to the need of plants can be controlled through on/off timers of the light. Some hydroponic grow system like drip or aeroponic need standard timer to control submersible pump for on/off timer. You can find two types of timer either 10 amp or 15 amp.
Each type of hydroponic system is usable for both submersible pump and light timer. You are highly recommended to buy 15 amp as this is the best one. A 15 amp timer is heavier and more durable than 10 amp timer. It must be water resistant and have a cover on it. On the other hand, the analog timer is better than digital timer because digital timer can’t preserve the data of the previous record.
Though air pump provides benefits for the growing system, it is not mandatory for the hydroponic system. It is comparatively inexpensive and can be found every aquarium shop. It helps to supply oxygen and create a bubble to the water. Dissolved oxygen helps to circulate the water and nutrients and mixes them. The air pump is set inside the reservoir to help to decrease the pathogen which can make a foothold.
Types of hydroponics
Most people think that hydroponic growing system is a system to grow plants without any medium. But this is a type of various methods of hydroponic system. There are also many types of garden tools with reviews. The several types of hydroponic system are:
- F.T System
- Aeroponic System
- Wicks System
- Water Culture
- Ebb and Flow System (Flood and Drain)
- Drip System (recovery or non-recovery)
Advantages of Hydroponics
To grow well, the plant needs only nutrients and water, not soil. In a hydroponic growing system, a single root can absorb all necessary elements to grow. Plant grow faster and bigger as it gets all the elements with proper measurements. So the plant focus on growing upstairs instead of looking for nutrients in the soil by extending roots. It helps to reduce soil erosion and keep the environment moderate and well.
The people who live in the city need hydroponic system most because in the city soil is not available and working with soil in the house or office looks unparalleled. On the other hand, measuring nutrition level in the water is easier than nutrition level in the soil. The hydroponic system uses less water which produces less vapor rather than natural plants. But controlling pH is must in the hydroponic grow system.
Disadvantages of hydroponics
Though the hydroponic growing system has many advantages to use, it has some demerits too. The biggest thing is that it requires more money than the counterpart of soil planting. Setting up a large scale hydroponic plants costs a lot of money and time. You’ll get in haphazard to control and manage a system if you aren’t an expert one. You have to monitor the nutrients level and pH of the water on the regular basis. The system should always work well because the failure of the system can hamper and create a huge loss for the gardener.
The hydroponic system isn’t alternative for soil planting. It is a great opportunity for the garden lovers who want to have a garden. It gives the gardener to use the resources on the right amount and expense for the garden. The system is an ancient method of planting which is reinvented in 100 years ago. But the method is getting popularity with the recent time. I strongly believe that the article will help you to understand and know the basic of the hydroponic growing system. If you are looking the best grow tent with reviews, we can help you to find the best one. You can also find more tools for your garden with reviews in our website.