You may want to grow tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce, and other veggies in your backyard for a more sustainable lifestyle. But when you don’t have access to too much water, you may want to consider giving hydroponics a try. You can read more about hydroponics in this site here.
The good news is that you don’t have to be an experienced grower of fresh produce, and you don’t have to study in-depth agriculture to create an indoor system. There is lots of available information on the web, and you can start by setting up a plan and researching the kinds of plants suitable to grow in your area.
What is Hydroponics?
Plants are usually grown using soil, water, sunlight, and fertilizer. In hydroponics, you remove the soil from the equation and replace it with a nutrient-based solution. This is convenient for people who tend to underwater or overwater their plants as the roots have constant access to water that they need and oxygen when they are in a soilless environment.
The technique of hydroponics has been used in ancient civilizations. The modern methods are common in commercial greenhouses and residential homes for over three decades now. You grow the veggies in a soilless medium and the roots are always submerged in nutrient-filled water that helps in growing the plants.
Another reason some growers choose this technique is that they can grow their produce inside a greenhouse. This means that they control the temperature, climate, ventilation, lights, and other factors that can help their plants grow.
If you want a large-scale project, you can get supplies online on a trusted site. There are hydroponics online sites that can help you get started by providing you with what you need at wholesale prices. Every piece of equipment such as saucers, propagation trays, air pots, and a lot more can help you set up your system in no time. You can also ask about nutrient-rich solutions suitable for the roots of the veggies you want to grow.
Advantages of Hydroponics
You must know the advantages and disadvantages of the technique before you get started. You may also want to see why this is a viable option for people who want to begin harvesting crops when you can easily plant in the soil.
Veggies Grow Better in Hydroponics
Using this method, you can enjoy a 30% growth rate than the plants grown in soil. Studies show that hydroponics can help the plants grow higher with bigger fruits in tomatoes. The higher growth rate is due to the fact that the roots are consistently coming in contact with the nutrients instead of searching for them deep down the soil. The energy of extending the roots down the soil will instead be consumed in growing and producing flowers and fruits upwards.
You Can Save More Water
In many countries, agriculture can account for almost 80% of the water consumption of the nation. The Food and Agriculture Organization reported that the demand for food would also increase when the population expands. This means that water consumption will rise even higher, which is something that farmers have to deal with in the near future.
This is where hydroponics comes into the picture. The method of soilless planting uses only about 10% water when you compare this to the traditional way of planting in the soil. This is possible because the water is recirculated, and the veggies can get sufficient water while the excess can go back to the system.
If you don’t need soil, this can be a convenient option to grow vegetables. If you live in the cities where there’s not enough space, you can still grow your very own cabbages. You won’t also have to deal with pests that are often related to the soil and other plant diseases prevalent in an earthy environment. You can read more about these soil borne diseases here: http://www.fao.org/agriculture/crops/thematic-sitemap/theme/spi/soil-biodiversity/soil-organisms/the-function-of-the-soil-community/pests-diseases/en/.
Effectively Use the Nutrients
The nutrients that you are using can be controlled and recycled. This is unlike the case with the soil where you lose the nutrients after you applied fertilizer. You won’t be able to use the nutrients again, which can be expensive in the long run. In case the plants are not getting enough nutrients and minerals, some are held in a reservoir that the roots can absorb anytime.
Disadvantages of Hydroponics
It can be daunting to purchase all the tools and equipment needed to get the system running for some people. But after getting the results of juicier tomatoes, strawberries, bell peppers, and squash, they see that their initial expenses have been paid off.
In this system, you only need to invest once for the equipment, and then you can plant unlimited broccoli and spinach for years to come. But before the herbs and veggies can grow, you need first the air filters, timers, air pumps, nutrients, growing media, and containers that will help you have an efficient system on hand.
You need to research first about how the system works, how other farmers grow their produce in this procedure, and many more. You need to choose which type of method will work best in the environment that you are in. You also need to search about how a particular vegetable will grow and how you will get sunlight and other factors in your planting area. You don’t have to worry about the knowledge though, since there are many tutorials, articles, and videos that will help you get started.
There are cases where your area may conduct maintenance on electricity or water utilities. If this is the case, you may need to install a backup on hand since the plants depend on you. If the roots become too dry, they can wilt in just a few hours. It is important that you need to have a stable supply of electricity if you want to use this kind of technique.
Since you already know all about hydroponics, its advantages, and disadvantages, it’s time for you to start planting. Get the best equipment out there that will last longer, and if you want to start with lots of veggies, ask for wholesale prices. You can get your essentials online and finally grow your very own strawberries and lettuces inside your home.