Hydroponics farming symbol Hydroponics Farming . com
Hydroponics Gardening and Sprouting Systems for individual use, commercial growing or livestock feed
Hydroponics farming symbol
Hydroponics Farming . com
Hydroponics Gardening and Sprouting Systems for individual use, commercial growing or livestock feed

Hydroponics Systems

Products

  Accessories
     Hydro-Accessories
     Hydro-Cabinet
     Hydro-Dome-Lids
     Hydro-Light Timer
     Hydro-Net Pots
     Hydro-Reservoirs
     Hydro-Water
     Soil-Stake
     Sprouter-Chem
     Sprouter-Parts
     Sprouter-Seeds
     Sprouter-Trays/Containers
 
Hydroponics Systems
     Hydro-Aeration
     Hydro-Aeroponics
     Hydro-Drip
     Hydro-Ebb & Flow
     Hydro-Germination
     Hydro-Vertical Garden
     Soil based
     Sprouters
     Juicers / Juices
     Mill - GrainMill
 
Growing Medium
     Expanded Clay
     Organic
     Perlite and Vermiculite
     Stonewool
 
Information
     Books
     DVD
 
Lights
     Ballasts
     Reflectors
     Bulbs
     Fluorescent
     LED System
     Induction System
     Light Movers
     Light Stand
     Solar Power
 
Nutrients
     Fertilizer
     Fertilizer-Organic
    
Stimulants
    
Treatments
  Pumps
     Air pump
     Water pump

Five Methods of Hydroponic Gardening

TomatoesAeroponics, Drip Method, Ebb and Flow, NFT (Nutrient Film Technique), Aeration Method

Aeroponics

The plants are grown in containers or nets which allow the roots to dangle in air above the nutrient solution. An aeroponics mister pump forces a spray of nutrients through the roots at very frequent intervals. For example, one minute of spray followed by 4 minutes of drainage. The act of spraying ensures that additional oxygen is mixed with the nutrient solution providing an enriched oxygen, nutrient solution that is very beneficial to the plant and results in rapid growth.

Plants achieve an increase in water and nutrient uptake over conventional soil gardening methods. Soil tends to bind crucial minerals and therefore plants tend to expend a lot of energy pulling the minerals away from the positive ions such as clay in the soil.

This method also eliminates the potential of water logging the root system or exposing the root system to a depleted oxygen supply resulting from constantly recirculating the nutrient solution without using an air pump to replenish the oxygen supply in the water.

The aeroponic cloning systems are also good for starting new cloned plants.

Drip Method

In a Drip system, the nutrient solution is delivered to the plants through drip emitters on a timed system usually scheduled to run for approximately 5-10 minutes of every hour. The timed cycle flushes the growing medium, providing the plants with fresh nutrients, water and oxygen as the emitter is dripping.

The plant roots are most commonly grown in a medium of perlite, grow rocks or rockwool. This system is often used to grow long term crops like tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers.

Ebb and Flow: (also known as flood and drain)

The Ebb and Flow method periodically floods the plant growth medium and roots with water and nutrient solution and then allows the water to drain off exposing the growth medium and roots to air. This procedure can be compared to high tide and low tide at an ocean beach. At high tide the beach sand is flooded with seawater. Then at low tide the water drains back into the ocean exposing the sand to the air. The sand remains moist for a period of time and then becomes flooded again at high tide.

In Hydroponics, the flow pattern of water and nutrient solution must be timed so that the growth medium remains moist during the Ebb period and does not allow the plant roots to dry out before the next flow of water. The growth medium used varies in moisture holding ability which must be taken into consideration when setting the timing cycle.

Most Ebb and Flow systems will flood the grow bed for 10 or 15 minutes of every hour or two. In an Ebb and Flow system, the plant roots are most commonly grown in a medium of perlite, rockwool or expanded clay pebbles. During the Flow period the plant roots and growth medium are flooded with water and nutrient solutions. Then during the Ebb period the roots are exposed to air enabling them to acquire the necessary oxygen. The growth medium retains moisture for a considerable period of time, ensuring that the plant roots do not dry out between the scheduled nutrient solution flows.

Nutrient Film Technique (NFT)

In the Nutrient Film Technique, the plants are normally contained in plastic pots with slitted bottoms that permit the roots to dangle through to the water and nutrient solution in the channel below. The bottom of the root system dangles in the water while the upper part of the roots remain in air at all times ensuring that the roots have access to the necessary oxygen.

The only purpose of using a growth medium would be to hold the plant roots in place or to enable the seed or seedling to sprout.

Aeration Method

The Aeration method uses an aquarium air pump to bubble oxygen to the roots of plants immersed in the nutrient solution. Plants are suspended 1 inch above the solution by a 2-inch-deep mesh tray that is set into the container by placing the lip of the tray over the container's edge. A layer of inert material, such as gravel, clay pebbles, or vermiculite, is placed in the tray to provide stability for the plants while allowing the roots to grow down into the nutrient solution.
Website Builder