Hydro farming is agriculture where plants are grown in water instead of soil. The water is enriched with all the nutrients the plants need to grow, making it a more efficient way to produce crops.
Hydroponic farming is prevalent in areas with a lack of soil or space to grow crops conventionally.
What Is Hydroponics?
Hydroponics is a method of growing plants using mineral nutrient solutions, in water, without soil.
Hydroponics comes from the Greek words hýdōr, meaning “water”, and pónos, meaning “labor”. It is a subset of hydroculture.
Hydroponics is a relatively new way of growing plants, first developed in the 1930s. But the concept of growing plants in water goes back much further.
In the 18th century, English botanist John Woodward published his experiments on the water to grow plants.
One of the advantages of hydroponics is that it allows you to grow crops in areas where traditional agriculture is impossible.
Hydroponics is also more efficient than traditional agriculture because it uses less water and fewer nutrients.
There are many different hydroponic systems, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. Some hydroponic systems are more complicated than others, but they share the same basic principles.
What You Need To Build Hydroponic Farm
To start a hydro farming, you will need a few basic things: a water tank, a grow light, an irrigation system, and some plants.
The water tank can be any size, but it should be large enough to hold enough water to support the plants on your farm.
If you don’t have enough sunlight, you will need artificial light to grow. You need grow light.
The grow light should be a full-spectrum light that will provide the plants with the light they need to grow.
The irrigation system is necessary to deliver the water and nutrients to the plants.
Essential Part of Plant Growth
There are 5 main elements necessary to grow hydroponic plants: water, oxygen, root support, nutrients, and light.
Water is an essential part of plant growth. Plants need water to transport nutrients and minerals throughout their bodies, regulate their internal temperature, and help them produce food.
There are several things to consider when providing water for plants, including the pH level of the water and the type of water you are using.
Most plants prefer water with a pH level of 6-5, although there are some exceptions. The pH level of the water refers to its acidity or alkalinity. It can be adjusted with over-the-counter solutions from your local hardware, garden, or hydroponic store.
If the pH level of your water is too acidic or too alkaline, it can damage the plants or correspondingly make it difficult for plants to grow, flower, and thrive.
It’s always best to check the pH level of the water before you start watering and then adjust accordingly.
Oxygen is essential for plants to respire, taking in carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen.
In traditional farming, roots can get the oxygen needed for respiration from pockets of air in the soil.
However, in hydroponic setups, you will either need to leave space between the base of your plant and the water reservoir, or you’ll need to oxygenate your container (think of bubbles in a fish tank), which you can accomplishbuying an air stone or installing an air pump.
Your plant’s roots need something to cling to to grow properly. While you don’t need soil to do this, some materials work better than others. These include vermiculite, perlite, peat moss, coconut fiber, and rockwool.
Avoid materials that might compact (like sand) or don’t hold any moisture (like gravel).
A plant’s nutritional requirements are no different when grown in a hydroponic system as opposed to traditional soil. In fact, because plants in a hydroponic system are not dependent on soil for their nutrients, you have much more control over the available nutrients. This is why it is essential to include a nutrient solution in the water feeding your plants.
The three main macronutrients required for plant growth are nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K). In hydroponics, these nutrients are typically provided in the form of a periodically replenished solution.
The concentration of these nutrients in the solution will depend on the particular plant variety being grown and the stage of growth. For most plants, the concentrations of N, P, and K in the solution will be in the range of 10-100 parts per million (ppm).
There are many different nutrient solutions available for purchase from hydroponic store. Still, you can also make your own if you are so inclined. The important thing is to ensure that your plants are getting the nutrients they need to stay healthy and productive.
Light To Grow
Light is essential for plant growth, and it is crucial to provide the correct amount for the plant type.
There are a few factors to consider when providing light for plants:
- The plant’s species
- The stage of growth
- The amount of light needed
- The duration of light exposure
Plant species have different light requirements. For example, some plants need direct sunlight while others can grow in shaded areas.
The growth stage also matters – seedlings need more light than fully-grown plants.
Different plants need different amounts of light – for example, a cannabis plant needs 16-18 hours of light per day, while a tomato plant only needs 6-8 hours of light per day.
The duration of light exposure is also important. Some plants, like chrysanthemums, need darkness to flower.
There are a few ways to provide light to plants: natural sunlight, artificial sunlight, and LED lights.
Natural sunlight is the best light source for plants, but not all plants can grow in direct sunlight.
Artificial sunlight can be provided with grow lights or lamps. These lights emit a specific spectrum of light beneficial for plant growth.
LED lights are a newer light that is becoming more popular for growing plants. LED lights are more energy-efficient than other grow lights, and they can be customized to emit the specific spectrum of light best for a particular type of plant.
There are several other essential factors to consider when creating a more sophisticated hydroponic system.
For instance, adding carbon dioxide (CO2) to the growing environment can help plants grow more efficiently.
However, the five factors listed above are the most essential. By monitoring and adjusting them, you can create the perfect conditions for your plants to thrive.
Each grow will be different, so it’s important to constantly experiment and learn what works best for your specific setup.
Why Grow Without Soil?
There are a few reasons you might choose to grow plants without soil. One reason is that soil can often be a limiting factor in plant growth. In other words, there might be certain nutrients or minerals that are not available in the soil, and so the plants cannot grow to their full potential.
By growing plants in a soilless medium, you can provide them with all the nutrients they need to thrive.
Growing plants without soil can be a more efficient use of resources since it does not require soil, compost, or fertilizer.
Another reason to grow plants without soil is to avoid the problems causedsoil-borne diseases. Soil can often be a breeding ground for harmful bacteria and fungi, which can damage or even kill plants. Growing plants in a soilless medium eliminate the risk of these diseases.
Growing plants without soil are much simpler and less labor-intensive than traditional gardening. There is no need to dig up the dirt, amend it with compost or fertilizer, or water it regularly.
Another advantage of growing plants without soil is that it is possible to grow plants in areas where traditional gardening is impossible, such as on a rooftop or in a small space.
Finally, hydroponic systems provide plants with all the nutrients they need, focusing on growing tall and strong instead of wasting energy growing extensive root systems.
The growth rate of plants in a hydroponic system varies based on the type of system and the quality of care. Still, most plants will mature up to 25% more quickly than the same plants grown in soil.
In addition to the increased growth rate, hydroponic plants tend to yield more crops than plants grown in soil.
Hydro Farming For You
Hydro farming is an excellent option for people who want to garden but don’t have the time or space for traditional gardening.
Plants grown in a hydroponic system are healthier and grow more quickly than plants grown in soil.
Hydroponic plants grow more quickly and produce more crops than plants grown in soil.