7 Reasons Why Hydroponics Is Better Than Soil

Thomas Angas by Thomas Angas | Last Updated: January 18, 2021

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In recent posts, we’ve taken a look at hydroponics from a few different angles such as why hydroponics is useful for crop cultivation and can hydroponics be considered organic.

In this post we’re going to expand upon one of the key points that we’ve touched upon a few times in these posts – why hydroponics is better than soil.

Let’s get started!

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7 Reasons Why Hydroponics Is Better Than Soil

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).

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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.

Thomas Angas, the founder of Authority Gardening lives with his wife and two darling pups. He spends his free time writing, hiking and learning how to become a better gardener. He launched Authority Gardening in 2017 to help people all over the world their gardens grow.