What is Hydroponics? A Quick Overview

When you think of gardening, the first few images that probably pop up in your head are those of lush green plants with those little droplets of water on them set on rich fertile soil, and a full sun overhead. But that’s not how it always works.

What is Hydroponics?

Simply put, hydroponics is a technique in which plants are growing in a nutrient-rich water-based solution- aka no soil! In this case, the root system is supported by using other materials such as clay pellets, rockwool, or peat moss.

Over the years, hydroponics has transformed, and you can now practice it in different ways. In its simplest form, you don’t even need any electricity, lights, or automation, but there are a few complex forms of hydroponics that are monitored and controlled by different technological devices, all to automate the process and make it simpler.

hydroponics growing greens

Why Go For It?

Hydroponics is getting popular fast, and one of the main reasons for this is the fact that it is perfect for growing in limited areas and indoors. This also means that growing plants all throughout the year isn’t tricky anymore.

Without a soil system and all its associated factors, there is a much lesser risk of your plants being infected by diseases.

In addition, some advanced methods of hydroponics are also automated- they can be controlled with computers and timers, which makes the entire gardening process a breeze.

The Benefits

Growing your plants with hydroponics has many benefits. We’ve listed some of the best ones here!

  • When grown hydroponically, your plants will mature up to 25 times faster. This means you’ll be able to get your produce quicker than you usually do.
  • The amount of produce will also be higher- up to 30% more in some cases.
  • Since your plant will not have to work as hard to obtain nutrients, all of its energy will be spent growing, and you’ll notice your plants growing bigger and faster.
  • You will also need to use less water to grow your plants.
  • Hydroponics is great for the environment too. There’s less wastage and pollution due to soil runoff.

hydroponics plants grown in water

The Drawbacks

While the hydroponics system has a number of benefits, there are also a few potential downsides to this method of gardening.

  • One of the biggest downsides of this mode of gardening is the cost. A hydroponics system of any size can turn out to be more pricey as opposed to a traditional gardening setup.
  • If you’re looking to set up a large-scale hydroponics system, it can be very costly and can take a lot of time too.
  • You’ll need to focus on monitoring the pH and nutrient levels of the system frequently.
  • You cannot grow all kinds of plants with hydroponics.

Are you considering hydroponics for your gardening system? You may also be interested in our post on aquaponics.

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