12 Advantages of Hydroponics!
1. No soils needed
In a sense, you can grow crops in places where the land is limited, doesn't exist, or is heavily contaminated. In the 1940s, Hydroponics was successfully used to supply fresh vegetables for troops in Wake Island, a refueling stop for Pan American airlines. This is a distant arable area in the Pacific Ocean. Also, Hydroponics has been considered as the farming of the future to grow foods for astronauts in the space (where there is no soil) by NASA.
2. Make better use of space and location
Because all that plants need are provided and maintained in a system, you can grow in your small apartment, or the spare bedrooms as long as you have some spaces. Plants' roots usually expand and spread out in search of foods, and oxygen in the soil. This is not the case in Hydroponics, where the roots are sunk in a tank full of oxygenated nutrient solution and directly contact with vital minerals. This means you can grow your plants much closer, and consequently huge space savings.
3. Climate control
Like in greenhouses, hydroponic growers can have total control over the climate - temperature, humidity, light intensification, the composition of the air. In this sense, you can grow foods all year round regardless of the season. Farmers can produce foods at the appropriate time to maximise their business profits.
4. Hydroponics is water-saving
Plants grown hydroponically can use only 10% of water compared to field-grown ones. In this method, water is recirculated. Plants will take up the necessary water, while run-off ones will be captured and return to the system. Water loss only occurs in two forms - evaporation and leaks from the system (but an efficient hydroponic setup will minimise or don't have any leaks). It is estimated that agriculture uses up to 80% water of the ground and surface water in the US. While water will become a critical issue in the future when food production is predicted to increase by 70% according to the FAQ, Hydroponics is considered a viable solution to large-scale food production.
5. Effective use of nutrients
In Hydroponics, you have a 100% control of the nutrients (foods) that plants need. Before planting, growers can check what plants require and the specific amounts of nutrients needed at particular stages and mix them with water accordingly. Nutrients are conserved in the tank, so there are no losses or changes of nutrients like they are in the soil.
6. pH control of the solution
All of the minerals are contained in the water. That means you can measure and adjust the pH levels of your water mixture much more easily compared to the soils. That ensures the optimal nutrients uptake for plants.
7. Better growth rate
Is hydroponically plants grown faster than in soil? Yes, it is. You are your own boss that commands the whole environment for your plants' growth - temperature, lights, moisture, and especially nutrients. Plants are placed in ideal conditions, while nutrients are provided at the sufficient amounts, and come into direct contacts with the root systems. Thereby, plants no longer waste valuable energy searching for diluted nutrients in the soil. Instead, they shift all of their focus on growing and producing fruits.
8. No weeds
If you have grown in the soil, you will understand how irritating weeds cause to your garden. It's one of the most time-consuming tasks for gardeners - till, plow, hoe, and so on. Weeds are mostly associated with the soil. So eliminate soils, and all bothers of weeds are gone.
9. Fewer pests & diseases
And like weeds, getting rids of soils helps make your plants less vulnerable to soil-borne pests like birds, gophers, groundhogs; and diseases like Fusarium, Pythium, and Rhizoctonia species.Also when growing indoors in a closed system, the gardeners can easily take controls of most surrounding variables.
10. Less use of insecticide, and herbicides
Since you are using no soils and while the weeds, pests, and plant diseases are heavily reduced, there are fewer chemicals used. This helps you grow cleaner and healthier foods. The cut of insecticide and herbicides is a strong point of Hydroponics when the criteria for modern life and food safety are more and more placed on top.
11. Labor and time savers
Besides spending fewer works on tilling, watering, cultivating, and fumigating weeds and pests, you enjoy much time saved because plants' growth is proven to be higher in Hydroponics. When agriculture is planned to be more technology-based, Hydroponics has a room in it.
12. Hydroponics is a stress-relieving hobby
This interest will put you back in touch with nature. Tired after a long working day and commute, you return to your small apartment corner, it's time to lay back everything and play with your hydroponic garden. Reasons like lack of spaces are no longer right. You can start fresh, tasty vegetables, or vital herbs in your small closets, and enjoy the relaxing time with your little green spaces.
Seem like there are lots of benefits of Hydroponics and the image below seems to try to persuade you into Hydroponic growing. But keep reading to learn about its downsides.