Hydroponics is a fast-growing concept and is reaching commercial and home growers at a fast rate. The increase in popularity of the technique is simply because of its significant advantages when compared to soil farming. A better understanding of the science behind hydroponics is helping growers to maximize their yield with minimum resources.
Let’s get into the basics of hydroponics. Hydroponics is basically a technique of growing plants without soil! It is a method of growing plants in water with the essential nutrients dissolved in it. The plants are placed in net pots such that their roots are in touch with nutrient rich water and the plants are secured in the net pot usually using clay balls.
A lot of people are surprised to know that plants can grow with out any soil! So, let’s dive into how that’s possible. For this, first we need to understand what a plant needs to grow. As we all know, plants grow through a process called photosynthesis, in which they convert water, minerals and carbon dioxide in the presence of sunlight and chlorophyl into glucose and oxygen.
If you have noticed, there’s no mention of soil here! Plants grow in soil because it contains water and minerals. So, if plants get these by standing with their roots in a mineral rich water solution, they can do without soil altogether.
There are variety of hydroponic systems, but all have certain basic common requirements for plant growth:
Yes, it’s proven that plants show much better growth when grown hydroponically. This is simply because the plants are getting the right nutrients at the right stage in the form that it can be easily absorbed. Plants can absorb nutrients only in its ionic form. The major difference in the nutrients in soil and in hydroponic method is that the former requires bio-active intervention before it can be absorbed and the latter is ready for immediate uptake.
Plants require mainly 3 elements for proper growth: Nitrogen, Phosphorous and Potassium.
Plants cannot directly absorb nutrients from fertilizers or manure present in the soil. For example, let’s look into how plants absorb nitrogen.
What we need to understand is that the nutrients that plants absorb in hydroponics are exactly the same as the ions resulting after this complex process. So, in hydroponics plants can absorb the nutrients faster and much more easily and hence they grow faster, produce higher yields and are much more nutritious as well.
If you are interested in setting up your own hydroponic garden in your home balcony, give Vertigrove-hydro a try! Vertigrove-hydro is a vertical hydroponic system in which you can grow upto 36 plants in just 4 sqft. It is designed exclusively for urban dwellers who have space and time constraints. Contact us here to know more.