Hydroponic gardening has grown in popularity recently and today, we’re going to be discussing the benefits of it.
Gardening is popular among all age groups. Parents can get their children involved, some teenagers use it to learn more about biology and the way in which plants grow, and older generations fill their free time with growing their own fruit and vegetables.
Recently, we’ve seen hydroponic gardening start receiving increased attention and for many reasons. A little extra effort is needed for hydroponic to start with but in the end, it’s worth it.
What is Hydroponic Gardening?
It’s not as complicated as it sounds – we promise. Hydroponic gardening is simply growing plants without having planted them in a soil-based environment. Instead, you grow your plants in water which is mixed with nutrients and minerals which help them to grow.
Studies have shown that this is a much healthier and effective growing process and while it has yet to become the mainstream gardening approach, the popularity is evident that soon enough it might be.
Interested? Fantastic. It’s time to “dig in” and find out what benefits there are, as well as how you can get started on a hydroponic garden.
Some of the advantages of hydroponic gardening are:
Planting is Easy. With a soil-based setup it can be time-consuming to plant more seeds. But, when you use only water, it couldn’t be easier.
Easy Harvesting. After a few weeks (or months) of growing your fruits or vegetables, you can harvest them without any hassle. This is incredibly beneficial for growing fruits that are grown on vines such as grapes and strawberries. Although they aren’t typically grown in soil, using hydroponic gardening for growth will make harvesting them more convenient.
If you are growing plants or flowers then after they’ve fully grown, you can move them to a more mobile container. And put them on display.
Faster Growth. Research has shown that in comparison to the regular process of soil planting, hydroponic gardening grows plants up to 30% faster. This means that you can adjust the nutrients and minerals that you’re adding and see their effects sooner, and it also means you’ll notice results sooner rather than later!
You’ll Learn a Thing or Two. The concept of hydroponic gardening is very interesting. While you might not be as interested in the setup stage of the process, learning about the nutrients and minerals which are added to the water can be very interesting. If you get really involved in hydroponics and make it one of your main hobbies, you can start teaching others about it.
Less Upkeep. Maintaining a plant that you’ve planted in soil can be tedious. Every few days you have to fill your watering can and water each individual plant – this can take a good hour or so depending on how much you are growing. Now, as great as gardening is, no matter how much enjoyment you get out of it there’s nobody that wants to spend this much time watering plants. In fact, this is what drives most people to set up an automated watering system. But, with hydroponics, your plants don’t need to be watered every other day and you don’t have to worry about forgetting.
More Plants, Less Work. That’s right. A hydroponic garden gives you more freedom to grow the plants that you want. In comparison, soil-based growth takes time. You have to start by weeding the area, making sure that the soil is good quality, and then digging holes to plant the seeds. With hydroponics, planting new plants will take just a few seconds (it’s as simple as taking the pot out and putting the new one in).
Adding Nutrients and Minerals. Sure, you could continue with a soil-based system and add these nutrients and minerals to your watering can, but this is a very tedious task and it won’t give you the chance to reap all of the benefits to hydroponic gardening. Not only will you have to measure out the additives multiple times, but you’ll have to maintain them a lot more, replanting will take up a lot of your time, and animals could still cause you trouble.
No Vermin. This is one of the best things about hydroponics. Given that hydroponic systems are usually set up in a controlled environment which is “off limits”, there’s no risk of animals or insects eating your precious plants. Everything that comes in contact with your plants is either from what they’ve produced or what you’ve added – this significantly decreases the chance of them dying suddenly! Let’s not forget cats (these cuddly creatures are curious and won’t shy away from tasting a few of your plants).
As you can see, there are nothing but benefits to doing hydroponic gardening. It doesn’t matter whether you’re new to gardening or you’ve been an avid gardener for years, hydroponics is worth everyone trying out.
If these benefits have persuaded you that it’s time to give hydroponic gardening a go, great! For those of you who have been persuaded, you probably won’t know an awful lot about setting up a hydroponic system and as such, here are the main things that you’ll need to know.
Buy a Kit. Save yourself the hassle and buy a beginner’s kit. These kits contain everything that you need to get started and it’ll save you the hassle of browsing through products that you don’t know much about. After you get a hang of the basics and you’ve grown a few plants using a hydroponic system, you can consider preparing your own setup.
Indoors or Outdoors? Typically, you’ll find a hydroponic system indoors, but they work just as well outdoors. Be aware that if you choose to have it outside then the risk of vermin will arise. An indoor system gives you more control over the environment and minimises any risks.
Patience is a Virtue. As we said before, hydroponics will speed up the growth development process, although that doesn’t mean it’ll occur overnight. Depending on what you’re growing it will probably be a few weeks before you see any sort of growth and over time, as you learn more about nutrients and minerals, you’ll be able to change the approach you take.
Aside from these things, don’t worry if you make a mistake. Unless you have experience with these sorts of things then you aren’t going to have a solid understanding, and it’s not unheard of for beginners to make mistakes. Don’t beat yourself up about it and instead, learn from your mistakes and move on.
All in all, hydroponic gardening comes with a lot of benefits. Setting up the hydroponic system might be a bit tedious at first (admittedly, the first time isn’t the most exciting thing in the world) but the more you learn about it, the bigger and more advanced you can make it.
We’ve shown you some of the basics that you need to know, and we’ve listed all of the benefits that you can reap. So, with all of this information, get to work and create a paradise of plants that you have grown using the wonderful system that is hydroponics. You won’t regret it and you’ll be the envy of everyone who sees it.