About Hydroponics

Basically, hydroponics means growing in a nutrient solution without soil.
The word hydroponics comes from two words – “hydro” which  is a reference of water, and “ponics” which is a reference to working: doing the work of growing with water.

History of Hydroponics

Many different civilizations have utilized hydroponic growing techniques throughout history. As noted in “Hydroponic Food Production” by Howard M. Resh: “The hanging gardens of Babylon, the floating gardens of the Aztecs of Mexico and those of the Chinese are examples of ‘Hydroponic’ culture. Egyptian hieroglyphic records dating back several hundred years B.C. describe the growing of plants in water.”
Throughout the last century, scientists and horticulturists experimented with different methods of hydroponics.
 One of the potential applications of hydroponics that drove research was for growing fresh produce in nonarable areas of the world. It is a simple fact that some people cannot grow in the soil in their area (if there is even any soil at all). This application of hydroponics was tested during World War II. Troops stationed on nonarable islands in the Pacific were supplied with fresh produce grown in locally established hydroponic systems. Later in the century, hydroponics was integrated into the space program. As NASA considered the practicalities of locating a society on another plant or the Earth’s moon, hydroponics easily fit into their sustainability plans. This research is ongoing.
But by the 1970s, it wasn’t just scientists and analysts who were involved in hydroponics.
Traditional farmers and eager hobbyists began to be attracted to the virtues of hydroponic growing.
Hydroponics is proved to have several advantages over soil gardening.
  •   Grown under the same conditions the hydroponic plant grows 30-50 percent faster than a soil plant.
  •   The nutrient solution in a hydroponic system is delivered directly to the root system and the plant does not have to waste energy searching in the soil for the nutrients that it requires. The plant then uses this saved energy to grow faster and to produce more fruit.
  •   Hydroponics works anywhere if there is enough light for the plant to grow  - indoors, in a greenhouse as well as outdoors. This allows food to be grown and consumed in areas of the world that cannot support crops in the soil. Any plant can be grown in a hydroponic system, though some are more delicate than others.
  •   Hydroponics produce is cleaner than its soil grown counterpart, and the grower has the ability to adjust the nutrient feed for maximal growth and yield in the shortest time.
  •   Hydroponic produce frequently exceeds soil grown produce in terms of flavor and nutrition. This is because all of the nutrients required by the plant are immediately available when the plant needs them.
  •   Growing hydroponically eliminates the need for massive pesticide use (considering most pests live in the soil), effectively making our air, water, soil, and food cleaner.

  Commercial growers are flocking to hydroponics like never before. The ideals surrounding these growing techniques touch on subjects that most people care about, such as helping end world hunger and making the world cleaner. In addition to the extensive research that is going on, everyday people from all over the world have been building (or purchasing) their own systems to grow great-tasting, fresh food for their family and friends.
 Educators are realizing the amazing applications that hydroponics can have in the classroom.
 And ambitious individuals are striving to make their dreams come true by making their living in their backyard greenhouse, selling their produce to local markets and restaurants.

Hydroponics Basics

Growing Medium

Although there is no soil in a hydroponic garden, the plants must still be anchored and for this purpose the growing medium is used.  The hydroponic growing medium is an inert substance that provides support for the plants, retain moisture and allow space for good air exchange. Does not supply any nutrition to the plants.
 There is a vast variety of growing mediums that may be used. The most popular mediums include materials like perlite, rockwool, clay pellets, vermiculite, coconut fiber, gravel, sand. Even air may be used as a hydroponic growing medium
 The hydroponic media that work best are pH neutral.
The type of media you choose will depend on the size and
type of plants you wish to grow, and the type of hydroponic system being

used

Growing Techniques

There are different ways to bring the nutrient solution to the plants roots. Hydroponic systems are characterized as active or passive.
 An active hydroponic system uses a pump to actively moves the nutrient solution.
 A passive hydroponic systems rely on the gravity, the capillary action of the growing medium or a wick
Passive systems are usually too wet and do not supply enough oxygen to the root system for optimum growth rates.
The main types of hydroponic growing systems are:
 Drip System: The most widely used type of hydroponic systems
Wick System: The simplest of all hydroponic systems
Water Culture System: A very simple to use hydroponic system
 Ebb and Flow System:   A popular method for hydroponic gardeners due to its simplicity and versatility
N.F.T.: Nutrient Film Technique System – simple to use, gravity fed hydroponics system.
Aeroponic System: One of the most high tech growing systems
 Aquaponic System: A system that combines Aquaculture (growing aquatic animals) and Hydroponics (growing plants) in a symbiotic environment.
Ultraponic or Fogponic System: It is an advanced form of aeroponics which uses water in a vaporised form to transfer nutrients and oxygen to the plant roots.





2 comments:

  1. Nowadays hydroponics techniques are increasing progressively and many companies are providing hydroponics kit for installation of gardening.

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  2. Hydroponics Grow Systems and Garden Equipment Hydroponic New Technology to Grow Plants without Soil The conventional way of growing fruits, plants and vegetables is to plant them in the soil. They need manure to grow and produce juicy food. The plants make food using sunlight and air. This process is known as photosynthesis. It is indeed a manner in which all energy in the biosphere is delivered to all living things

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