If you are interested in installing a hydroponic garden in your home, good for you! You are taking the first step toward helping the environment and also taking better care of yourself. Being able to grow your own healthy produce in your home is not impossible, even if you live in a small apartment. If you are tired of buying produce from the store that has been treated with chemicals or if you want to reduce your dependence on factory farming, a hydroponic garden can do all of this for you!
What Type of Hydropic System to Choose?
These are the four most popular hydroponic systems that can be used in your home.
This is the most common system because it’s the easiest to install and requires the least parts. This system can be as large or as small as you need it to be. The system uses water which is pumped with a reservoir pump from the reservoir through tubing to whatever the growing medium is that is being used in your garden. The moisture soaks the roots and then drains via gravity through the tubing back to the reservoir. Some systems recirculate water while others do not.
Ebb and Flow
This system fits well into any size space. The system operates by periodically flooding the trays that your plants are growing in. A pump moves the nutrient solution and water from the reservoir and floods the trays. A timer controls the flooding periods and tubes drain off the excess moisture. This is a system that will take more time to set up then a drip system but it can be a really good fit for your needs depending on what kinds of plants you want to grow.
Nutrient Film Technique
The N.F.T system is a fairly straight forward design and is best suited to grow produce such as lettuce or herbs. For this set up, you will need a shallow nutrient solution tray with tubing to allow water and nutrient flow to soak the plant roots. Like the ebb and flow system, this garden operates by periodic flooding of the growing tray driven by the pump. If you want to grow small plants quickly, this is the system for you.
Commercial growers use this system all the time and it can be very inexpensive to set up. As with the other systems, a reservoir pumps moisture and nutrients over the plant roots but in this system, the plants are suspended in baskets with the roots hanging into the growing medium and the water. The roots of the plants will be submerged all the time. Water culture systems are provided air from natural processes, falling water in the system or recirculation.
Any of these hydroponic systems can be improved with the addition of a grow tent to help keep the temperature and light ideal for your garden. If you have questions about what size tent to buy, here is a great grow tent article to help guide you.
These great hydroponic systems will have you up and running in no time! You will be so happy that you set up your hydroponic garden once you harvest your first herbs and vegetables and fruit that you grew yourself. Who knew that saving the environment could be accomplished so easily!
You might be interested in reading, “Easy Herbs to Grow in Your Garden“.