Hydroponic farming, a term that might sound heavy, but it’s so simple. Let me explain.
Have you ever thought of having your own space to grow vegetables? Well, Hydroponic farming can help you achieve that. How? Keep reading further, and your questions will be answered.
Let’s understand the term itself. Hydroponic is nothing but the cultivation of plants without using soil. You can grow them in sand, gravel or liquid.
Sounds unconventional? Yes, it is possible to grow plants without soil using Hydroponic methods.
Though Hydroponics were not that popular, now, their popularity is gaining pace rapidly due to their characteristics.
The method is straightforward, and you can try this without worrying about anything.
Generally, plants need selected nutrients, water, and sunlight to grow. With Hydroponic methods, this can be done very efficiently, effectively, and with less water and sunlight.
Instead of using soil, mineral-rich water is used so that plants can absorb minerals required for their survival without the soil. They grow better in this environment. You can see it for yourself when you try your hands on.
Benefits of Hydroponic Farming:
Hydroponic is becoming an essential trend in growing plants with minimal resources. This is a sustainable approach which can change the way we grow plants shortly.
The benefits of this type of farming are many. Few of them are;
- 50% faster growth compared to soil
- Can be harvested throughout the year
- Constant availability of nutrition for the plants
- Doesn’t need any herbicides or pesticides
- Water that is used in this system stays in the system itself which can be reused
- Less landmass is required as it doesn’t need any soil
- Can grow indoors and outdoors throughout the year
- No weeding required
- More plants in less area
Now, if you see the benefits, these are perfect for an environment which doesn’t have suitable conditions like soil, soil nutrients, minerals, etc.
The benefits list goes longer than you expect, so these are some benefits which most people would like to know about.
Is Hydroponics Farming possible in India?
Well, Hydroponics is absolutely possible. As India is a tropical country with four different seasons spread throughout the year, it’s perfect for Hydroponic farming.
Not just India, you can do this in any part of the world provided you have the essential requirement for this kind of farming.
If we talk about India, more specifically, the hydroponics technique can be handy because of the growing pollution and environmental decay due to which the soil quality and the water quality is decreasing.
It is possible to practice this in India because India is no different in terms of available resources.
In India, there is an ample amount of fresh water which can be used for supporting the plants and of course the climate which can create an environment for almost all kinds of plants.
Hydroponics in India? Not a problem, you just start doing it, and you can see the results.
You might be wondering, how can small plants make so much food without a proper base like soil? Or
How much food can Hydroponics produce?
Well, the answer to this question lies in the statistical data of the world. According to the data, revenues generated from hydroponic farming has skyrocketed in the past few years, since this started.
It can blow your mind after hearing this that, from 2013 – 2018, the food production has increased by 6.5%, producing a massive $24 billion for the producers.
The main question that any person might have in his head is, as this system completely relies on water, how much water is used by the system?
How much water can we save from this?
To answer this question, let me tell you, the water in a hydroponic system remains in the system itself. This is something very useful as we reuse the water continuously without disposing of it quickly.
The mineral mix, which is mixed with water, can last very long. So you don’t have to worry about it any sooner.
You can also build a small and portable hydroponic system for yourself.
Just take a plastic bottle, cut 1/3rd upper part of it. The lower base will serve as water storage, and the cut part can hold the seeds and the germinating plants. A rope is passing through the cap of the bottle from the upper part to the lower part to carry the minerals through the water.
That’s it, and a simple hydroponic system is ready.
Nutrients for Hydroponics:
The other question which people get it, how much nutrients do I need to mix with water?
You can either buy the pre-mixed nutrients from the market or make our own.
Let’s keep it simple and use pre-mixed nutrients. Before mixing the nutrients, you should get your water tested from an authorized lab then mix what’s necessary according.
The necessary nutrient is calcium and magnesium carbonates, Nitrogen, sulfur, potassium, boron chlorine, copper, etc. according to your requirements.
The most suitable food crops suitable for Hydroponics are cherry tomatoes, green leafy vegetables, cucumber, capsicum and a few other. These are the crops that are more common in arid tropical countries like India.
Controlling the temperature in Hydroponics:
It’s important to maintain the temperature of the water in Hydroponics. Proper temperature is needed to maintain the health of the plants.
65-80 degree Fahrenheit is considered the best temperature. You can use ice packs, cool water, white paint to reflect the heat and chillers. These are considered to be the best ways to control the temperatures.
This technique is ahead of its time in India. This is only limited to metros in the country. With constant awareness and technology, this can become popular in many parts of the county.
The growth of Hydroponics has a positive future ahead in India.