Below are some of our favorite reasons as to why hydroponics is better than soil.
1. Grow Crops Anywhere
One of the biggest challenges when it comes to traditional growing methods is that you’re limited by soil type. This means that in certain arid areas, growing crops can be extremely challenging as the solid simply isn’t able to provide the plants with the nutrients that they need.
With a hydroponics system, as long as you have a grow medium then it’s quite simple to get a basic hydroponics system up and running.
For example, the wick system can be build out of a plastic bottle and a few other bits that can be found everywhere (partly down to plastic pollution).
2. Grow Crops Year Round
Another great reason that hydroponics is better than soil is that you can grow crops year round.
As it’s possible to set up a hydroponic system without sunlight then you’re not dependent on ‘seasons’ for growing crops. Just by changing the amount of blue or red light that’s produced by your hydroponic lighting system you can mimic the seasons indoors.
This means you can grow and cultivate your crops year round.
3. Crops Grow Faster
Because hydroponics focuses on optimising the system in which your plants grow to provide the very best amounts of light, water and nutrients, the result is that your crops grow much faster than they would in soil which means quicker cultivation.
We’ll touch on a few of the other reasons crops grow so quickly in the points below.
4. Less Water Waste
In an article by the National Parks Service titled Hydroponics: A Better Way to Grow Food, they approximate that hydroponics saves up to 10 times as much water than traditional field crop watering methods due to the minimal water drain and run off and the ability to recycle the water through the system.
5. No weeds
Because you have a much more hygienic growing environment for your plants, you don’t introduce weeds into the system. So, because your plants aren’t competing with weeds for nutrients they grow bigger and much faster than in soil.
6. No soil borne diseases
Much like the lack of weeds, because there’s no soil there’s no chance of introducing soil borne diseases like pre and post-emergence damping-off, root rot and vascular wilts which can all damage your plants.
7. No need for crop rotation
Crop rotation is the practice of growing a series of different types of crops in the same area across a sequence of growing seasons. It reduces reliance on one set of nutrients, pest and weed pressure, and the probability of developing resistant pest and weeds.
Crop rotation is a method of growing different crops in the same area over different seasons. It’s a method of farming that’s been around for a few hundred years and that aim is to ‘rest’ the soil so it’s not reliant on one set of nutrients or prone to certain pests and weeds.
This sometimes means you’ll struggle to continuously grow one crop season after season in soil. Hydroponics doesn’t have this issue, as long as your system is set up for a particular crop you can grow it season after season without worrying about rotating crops.
This is particularly useful for commercial growers.
The Bottom Line
So there you have it, our little guide to why hydroponics is better than soil. While obviously there are downsides to hydroponic gardening, hopefully this helps show you some of the real benefits.
Hi, I’m Miles, the lead team member behind Gardeem.com. Besides being a passionate grower and writer, I’m a husband, father and grandfather to three! I started Gardeem in 2017 to provide simple and reliable gardening advice to everyone, regardless of their ability levels.