Hydroponic systems are much more efficient than the traditional method. They give rise to more yield and you can control almost everything about how your plant grows. Building your own system should be fun and you will have control over everything. That means that your plants should be healthy. But one disadvantage to hydroponic gardening is that it is much more expensive than container gardening. So if you have the resources to start it, then you should, otherwise you should think of alternatives.
Choose the type if system you want to start with
There are mainly three types of systems that you can build.
Water culture system.
This is the most basic type of system. It has a low cost and is also very easy to build. In this type of system, you can grow about five plants in every five gallons of water. Your plants will be on a platform that is made of Styrofoam, and they will get the nutrients through the water.
Multi flow system.
This is the slightly more expensive type of system than the water culture and is also a bit harder to build than the water culture type of system. But the advantage in this type is that you can grow a lot of plants in this way. You can grow them side by side at a time this way.
Ebb and flow type of system.
This is also a low cost and also quite easy to build the type of system. You will need to do your research and then make a list of things that you will need to make the system working. You will need to gather all of them first and then you will be ready.
Let’s discuss the water culture type of system. You will need to find a container that will act as a reservoir for the system. A standard fish tank will do the trick for you. Look for containers that are light proof. This means that you will need to find a container that has a surface through which light cannot enter. If your container is not light proof, then you can paint it in color black, or you can put a coating on the top for making it light proof. The reason why we want a light proof container is that if light enters the container, then it will cause the growth of algae, which is very dangerous for plants growing in the water. Algae grows by taking up all the oxygen and nutrients in the water. This means that it would be very dangerous for your plants if algae start growing in your container. Fish tanks would be perfect for your job. If the fish tank is transparent, which it probably would be, then you would need to paint it in black. You can also put a tape before painting. And after you have finished painting you can take off the tape, and you can use the line that would be formed to take notice of how much water is left in the reservoir. This can be particularly helpful to you, but if you don’t want to do this then it’s okay. Because you can always check from the above and see how much water is left. But if you have this line, then you might have an accurate assessment of how much water and nutrient is left in the container.
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Then you will need a ruler or any other measuring tools to measure the width and length of the fish tank or reservoir. Once you have done the measuring, you will have to cut a Styrofoam in the same dimensions. Not exactly the same dimensions, just leave a quarter of an inch on every side, just so that the Styrofoam can enter with ease into the container. This will leave the Styrofoam enough room so that it can move down when the water level in the reservoir changes. But remember, your work with the Styrofoam is not finished. You still have some work to do. Cut the Styrofoam. Make the holes so that you can place the pots in through them. Make the holes so that they match the dimensions of the pot. You can use a pencil to make a circle around the pot the then use a blade to cut through it. You also have cut a small hole just to let the air get into the water. Remember, the amount of plants that you can grow will depend on the size of your reservoir and the size of your garden.