Easy Ways to Start a Hydroponic Garden
In hydroponic gardens, plants don't need soil to grow. Instead of soil, plants recieve their nutrients from water-soluble nutrient solutions. Learn how to start yours at home.
These days lots of garden-lovers are seeking the benefits of a hydroponic garden. Not only are they smaller than traditional gardens, but they’re also easy to grow indoors and are perfect for growing vegetables.
The best part is that the equipment you need for a hydroponic garden isn’t expensive nor complicated. In fact, you don’t need to be an expert to set your garden up. There are several simple methods to start a hydroponic garden. Want to give it a try?
What is a hydroponic garden?
A hydroponic garden is a method of growing plants without soil. In short, they’re soil-free gardens. Instead of soil, these types of gardens use nutritious solutions that provide plants with all the chemicals they need to grow.
You can simply set the garden on water. Or you can build it on elements such as coconut fiber and rocks, which help the plants secure their roots. These gardens have become a big trend for urban gardens because they’re easy to maintain and require little space.
Considering the nature of hydroponic gardening, you need to do your research on the plants you want to grow in your garden. By knowing your plants, you can provide them with proper pH levels, the right nutrients as well as appropriate amounts of water and light.
Ways to start a hydroponic garden at home
Hydroponic gardens are truly amazing because they don’t require too much gardening experience to start your own at home. There are also several home methods that anyone can set up and maintain. Discover some of those methods below.
The first hydroponic garden method on our list is the popular Kratky method. It’s one of the easiest ones, making it perfect for hydroponic garden beginners and anyone who wants to plant their own vegetables.
To set up your garden, you’ll need certain materials such as a bucket, culture media, pots, hydroponic nutrients, and pH kits. All of these items will help you build a passive system that doesn’t require any electricity. It can run for several weeks without any additional care.
You can use a Kratky hydroponic garden to grow green vegetables such as lettuce and spinach. It is also great for planting tomatoes.
Simple basin or tray hydroponic system
To start your garden with the next method on our list, you’re going to need a big basin or tray, several culture medias such as coconut or a mixture of perlite and vermiculite, and of course, a mix of minerals and other nutrients as well.
The culture media help promote capillary action that moves nutrients down to the roots of the plants. It’s a great method for helping big, individual plants grow easily.
You can water this system manually. Or, you can also add an automatic watering system. For the latter, you’ll need another tray or basin, a submersible water pump, and a timer.
PVC NFT hydroponic garden system
This next method has a vertical set-up and follows the NFT method. It’s a great option for people who want to grow plants like tomatoes or small grasses. Depending on the size, this system can fit 20 to 40 plants.
You can set it up with big PVC tubes around 4 inches in diameter. Cut holes into the tube and put the plants inside. It’s a closed-system where water passes through the tubes and tank.
Its shape and size make it both an indoor and outdoor garden option. If you choose to make it an indoor garden, you’ll need to use indoor grow lights as well.
Benefits of having a hydroponic garden
After learning about some basic hydroponic gardening methods, you should also reconsider the benefits of having such a garden. As we mentioned at the beginning of our post, hydroponic gardens have certain benefits over traditional gardens:
- The plants can’t suffer soil- or weed-related diseases.
- The high-yield systems work in small spaces.
- It allows you to harvest at any time of the year.
- Tilling and hoeing the soil is an irrelevant task, saving you time.
- There is less water-use compared to traditional gardening methods.
Still haven’t started? Choose the method that seems the most interesting to you and create your own vegetable and herb patch. And of course, you can also plant different kinds of plants and flowers as well.