“Garden By the Kitchen” What grows hydroponically?

What Can You Grow Hydroponically?

People ask frequently, “what can I grow hydroponically? The answer is really quite simple: You can grow a large variety of flowers, vegetables, and herbs hydroponically, with the exception of mushrooms that are a fungi.

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Following is a listing of many plants that grow well in hydroponic systems, together with some information of interest

Growing flowers lends itself beautifully to hydroponic gardening as they can be grown in larger numbers, and can be grown year-round. Most flowers will do well in a hydroponic garden, and when seedlings are big enough, flowers can be cut or transplanted.

 

Flowers that are popular in the florist trade are usually good candidates for hydroponic culture. Why is this? Flowers like carnations, gerbera daisies, snapdragons, and lisianthus.

 

Although the benefits of hydroponics have sometimes been questioned, there seem to be many advantages in growing without soil. Some hydroponic growers have found they get yields many times greater when they switch from conventional methods. Because hydroponically grown plants dip their roots directly into nutrient-rich solutions, they get what they need much more easily than plants growing in soil, so they need much smaller root systems and can divert more energy into leaf and stem growth. With smaller roots, you can grow more plants in the same area and get more yield from the same amount of ground (which is particularly good news if you're growing in a limited area like a greenhouse or on a balcony or window-ledge inside).

Hydroponic plants also grow faster. Many pests are carried in soil, so doing without it generally gives you a more hygienic growing system with fewer problems of disease. Since hydroponics is ideal for indoor growing, you can use it to grow plants all year round. Automated systems controlled by timers and computers make the whole thing a breeze.

It's not all good news; inevitably there are a few drawbacks. One is the cost of all the equipment you need—containers, pumps, lights, nutrients, and so on.

Another drawback is the "ponic" part of hydroponics: there's a certain amount of toil / hard work involved. With conventional growing, you can sometimes be quite cavalier about how you treat plants and, if weather and other conditions are on your side, your plants will still thrive. But hydroponics is more scientific and the plants are much more under your control. You need to check them constantly to make sure they're growing in exactly the conditions they need (though automated systems, such as lighting timers, make things quite a bit easier).

Another difference (arguably less of a drawback) is that, because hydroponic plants have much smaller root systems, they can't always support themselves very well. Heavy fruiting plants may need quite elaborate forms of support system / cages etc.

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