Hydroponic gardening refers to a method of gardening that raises plants in a growing medium besides soil. Because of its nature, this type of gardening can be done in summer or winter, in the home or out.
To a person just beginning to discover hydroponic gardening, it can seem overwhelming to figure out what supplies are necessary for which crops. But by understanding the basics of soilless gardening, one can begin collecting the various supplies needed for a healthy, vibrant hydroponic garden.
When collecting supplies for a hydroponic garden, the first factor is which growing medium will be used to support the plants.
Many options are available, but most new gardeners have the easiest time starting with rock wool blocks, which will hold the seeds directly. These blocks are available in various sizes, but it is most advisable, to begin with, a smaller block for the seeds and then transplant the seedlings to larger blocks as they grow. Expanded clay is another popular choice for potted plants and is often as easy to find as rock wool blocks.
Because the alternative media will not provide the plants with a nutritional base, a nutrient solution is essential to the growth of the plants. Mixing your solution can become costly and complicated when you begin to purchase different fertilizers along with an accurate weight device to measure them.
A more accessible alternative is to buy a pre-mixed nutrient solution designed for the crops you have planted. Such nutrient solutions aren’t difficult to find at garden supply centers carrying hydroponic gardening supplies.
If you have built your hydroponic garden outdoors, the sun will provide the only light needed for the plants. If, however, you have created your garden indoors, you will need to set up an artificial light source. Several lights are available for this purpose; when choosing one, you will need to consider your health, your plant’s needs, and your electric bill.
Since the light will be turned on continuously, it is most important to select one that is energy efficient. Next, choose lighting that will be comfortable for you to be around, as well as a light that the plants will respond well to.
Having vibrant, flourishing plants year-round isn’t complicated with a hydroponic garden. If you are interested in testing out your green thumb on hydroponic gardening, take a look at the hydroponic gardening supplies available at your local garden center or search through some online retailers.