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Hydroponic Gardening – Forget the Dirt!

Everyone is familiar with the picture of a typical garden. First, it is outdoors. Second, it is plants growing in soil or dirt. And the plants are always lush and dripping with ripened fruits and vegetables – at least in the pictures we see. In reality we know that the weather has a tremendous effect on the dirt gardens to the point of actually controlling how well the plants grow.

Enter Hydroponic Indoor Gardening

Few people are familiar with the picture of a typical hydroponic garden. First, it is usually indoors. Second, you will not find the plants growing in soil. So how do they grow and what is the advantage?

Hydroponic plants are grown in a growing medium and have access to a nutrient solution. Soil plants are grown in the dirt because the roots need to search for and get their nutrients from the soil.

When nutrients are dissolved in water, they can then be sucked up by the roots of the plants. The roots of the hydroponic plants do not need to search for the nutrients because they are readily available from the nutrient solution. This, then, eliminates the need for soil.

Besides taking up less space and having more control over the amount of nutrients and light the hydroponics plants receive, the danger of picking up soil borne diseases is also eliminated.

Gardening without soil by using a nutrient solution and controlling the solution as well as the light is what produces large, healthy plants with high yields. hydroponics wholesaler

Hydroponic Indoor Gardening Equipment

Many stores specialize in hydroponic equipment, but you can also make your hydroponics garden yourself. You will need a few supplies and more detailed directions.

The first thing you need is a reservoir to put your plants in. This can be plastic jugs, jars, even the bathtub will work (you just will not be able to take a bath!) The container must have opaque sides – in other words no light should be able to get through the sides of the reservoir. If necessary, paint the sides black or cover them with aluminum foil. Otherwise, your garden will be susceptible to algae which will contaminate the nutrient solution.

The second thing you will need is good lighting. Many people do their hydroponic gardening in the basement or garage so it is imperative that good lighting be provided. Using artificial lights, such as high power sodium lights, will easily provide your plants with enough lumens to promote their growth.

Pump systems are available at garden centers, hydroponic stores, or you can opt to use an aquarium pump. Just be sure it pumps the right amount of oxygen into the nutrient solution so that your plants will survive.

Lastly is the nutrient solution that your hydroponic plants need in order to grow. Do not skimp on this solution. You can buy premixed solutions or those that you mix yourself. It is important to understand that plants grown in dirt get many trace minerals from that soil. These must be provided in the nutrient solution your hydroponic plants are receiving. Without the proper mix, the plants will not thrive.

Hydroponic gardening can be quite fun. You do not have the mess of the soil. Your system can be set up so that it is waist high so you do not need to kneel. And, you will have healthy, fresh produce year round.

 

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