The hydroponics system is basically the system that uses inert media as an alternative to the soil to grow plants. This system does not use soil. The hydroponic flowers, plants, and herbs are cultivated in the media and are supplied with nutrients such as oxygen and water. This system eliminates the necessity of soil to grow plants.
You might be wondering how this system works. So, here’s how:
How the Hydroponics System works?
Everyone knows what a plant needs to grow and thrive its water, salts, light, and oxygen.
In a hydroponic system, we supply the plant with everything that it needs to grow, everything that it would otherwise take from soil and this is how it gets the signals to grow.
When a plant takes its nutrients from the soil, it is an indirect intake. In a hydroponic system, we supply the nutrients directly to the plants, removing the barriers from between the plant and nutrients that it needs i.e soil and in this way, the plant shows rapid growth, better quality, and better yield.
This system comes with some benefits and cons to it as every other thing, the benefits that it gives are as following
Yield and time:
It gives better yield in less time as we eliminate the time that it would otherwise take in extracting the nutrients from the soil. The plants that grow in this system commonly grow at a rate of 20% faster than the plants in the soils and yield 25% more than their soil counterparts.
In this system, you can control the environment i.e temperature and ph according to the requirements of the plant. The farmer can grow the plant anywhere with controlled or customized growing conditions whether the weather outside is favorable for the plant or not.
The chances of this system getting intoxicated with pests are way lesser than the plants growing in the soil so you might not need any pest control at all.
It uses less space than the plants growing in the soil, so you can grow more plants in the same space but get more fruit.
Now, this system might have some drawbacks as well.
Here are some of them:
Growing the plants in such a system would require you to buy the system at first and it may cost you a little bit more than just soil.
When you are growing a plant without soil and in an artificial environment, you will have to be very critical about the amount and type of nutrients that you are providing but it is not that hard, you will learn eventually.
Types of Hydroponics System:
There is more than one type of hydroponic system so you can choose according to your preferences, all types of systems come with different specifications.
There are 6 basic types:
This is the simplest of all types, it requires no moving parts, the nutrient solutions are simply drawn into the growing medium with the help of wick.
A drawback of this system is that the larger plants or the plants using large amounts of water may use the nutrients supplied by the small wick, faster than expected.
This is an active system, the platform that holds the plants is usually made up of styrofoam which floats on the nutrient medium.
This system does not work very well with large plants or plants with longer periods.
Ebb and flow (flood and drain):
The ebb and flow system usually works by temporarily flooding the grow tray with nutrient medium and then draining the solution back to the reservoir. The action is normally done with a submerged pump connected to a timer.
This system works almost the same way as the ebb and flow with a pump, timer, and a reservoir but instead of flooding the grow tray temporarily, it drips the nutrients for the required amount of time.
It has two types:
- Recovery system
- Non-recovery system
Nutrient film technique:
This system has a constant flow of nutrient medium and does not have any timer.
This is probably the highest tech of all other types, in this system, the roots hang up with support in air and are misted with nutrient medium from below.