Hydroponics is an approach to growing plants, by employing the use of water imbued with mineral nutrients as opposed to the traditional method of using soil.
To this day the method popularized the “soilless culture” of agriculture, and went on to become a standard technique in researching and teaching in the field of biology.
Through this method, mineralized nutrients are dropped into the water supply in an artificial manner, and then get absorbed by the plant through its roots.
Not only is hydroponics an effective way to grow plants, it is also cleaner and non-polluting by nature (no soil, no pests and no pesticides).
To ensure a good supply of nutrients, one can rely on commercially released nutrients that are available everywhere and in wide variety no less.
These nutrients and solutions are essential for any hydroponic system or indoor gardening operation, as they already have complete and balanced formulas, as well as the specific minerals needed to grow plants.
In the market, any crop grower can buy a container of Calplex which is specialized to correct calcium deficiencies of varied plants.
To ensure healthy root systems of plants, BioRoot ($15) is the recommended plant growth supplement to use.
For anyone using over 200 ppm worth of tap water, the FloraMicro Hardwater is best. To help plants maintain growth and achieve better blooms in the long run, Spray-N-Grow is the top “plant vitamins” to spray with.
For specific needs, for specific types of plants as well as other related purposes, commercial hydroponic nutrients can help a lot and their presence on retail shelves offer crop growers a lot of choice.
One can also check with the different nutrients and gardening solutions providers for specific purposes (example: a single brand offers products specially formulated for growing vegetables hydroponically).
Other than buying nutrients in containers, you can create your own nutrient reservoir.
Not only does having a reservoir make it convenient for the crop grower or gardener to access (it can be placed near the plants that need nutrients); it can give him or her better control when dealing with the hydroponic systems and batches of plants.
A reservoir can be established by having water, the nutrients, an aquarium air pump, a TDS/EC meter, a PH testing kit and more.
By consulting with a professional, the establishment and maintenance of the reservoir can be done and in the long run, it can serve as an instant source of not just nutrients, but also help on using the hydroponics system itself.
It is also important to learn the specific types and amounts of nutrients crops need, as well as managing their distribution.
Whatever the method a crop grower uses to keep his or her plants growing healthily, hydroponic nutrients are essential to have at all times.
A large supply of these nutrients is needed whether one would use a reservoir or stockpile lots of them from the market. True enough, without hydroponic nutrients, any hydroponic system will fail.
Want to Put Together a Homegrown Hydroponics System?
So like we talked about earlier, in hydroponics, cultivation of plants is done by flooding their roots with nutrient solution for quite a while without the necessity of soil.
The plants are either placed on a growing medium such as vermiculite or perlite or whichever setup that can hold them in place and moistened regularly.
Hydroponics is an ancient school with Babylonians and Chinese as among the cultivators. However, it was not until a decade earlier when homegrown hydroponics is conveniently included among the specializations of gardeners and hobbyists.
Today, hydroponics can be done at home by anybody.
To get started, one should obtain the basic hydroponics equipment. Essential hydroponics supplies are a container, light, pump, reservoir, growing medium, reticulation, and nutrient solution.
A container is where the plants are held. It must have draining mechanism. Light is important as it supports photosynthesis. As homegrown hydroponics is done indoors, lights must be sufficient enough to encourage photosynthesis.
The pump is the engine of hydroponics. Its function is to pump nutrient solution through the reticulation pipes from the reservoir into the container.
A reservoir holds the runoff of nutrient solution from container grow-beds. In hydroponics, there are systems which necessitate the use of growing medium.
It is useful in holding seedlings in their rightful place. A few other growing mediums are expended clay pellets, gravel, and coconut fiber.
The pipes through which the nutrient solution shall pass and drain through compose the reticulation system. There are water-produced nutrients, mineral nutrients, and minor mineral nutrients that are helpful to plants.
Most nutrients are readily available commercially with varying formulations. Included in the water-produced nutrients are carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen.
On the other hand, the primary mineral nutrients are nitrogen, phosphorous, potassium, sulfur, calcium, and magnesium.
Belonging to the minor mineral nutrient group are manganese, boron, sodium, chloride, copper, iron, zinc, molybdenum, and nickel. Two of beneficial nutrients are silicon and cobalt.
The plants that can be cultivated in hydroponics are nearly all that can be planted on traditional gardening or farming. Fruits, vegetables, herbs, and flowering plants are raised hydroponically. These seedlings may be taken from anyone’s garden.
Nevertheless, if such is the case, ensure that the soil is thoroughly removed. Hydroponics stores also offer ready to plant seedlings exclusive to hydroponics.
Many see the potential of homegrown hydroponics. Some would say that the global hunger can be cured by hydroponics. Scientists are currently developing on this subject through various experimentations.