Considering hydroponic gardening as an option for growing your own produce or other plants? Going over the pros and cons of hydroponic gardening? Wondering what obstacles might be involved with hydroponic gardening? This article explains the benefits of hydroponic gardening as well as some of the pitfalls.
Pros: Garden all Year Indoors
Hydroponic gardening is an indoor method. This means you can grow all year, even in the worst of climates. Hydroponic gardening is ideal for those with no yard space. Since this is an indoor method, there is no worry about poor soil, either. Each plant is grown in it’s own calculated nutrient mix.
Pros: No Digging
Hydroponic gardening requires no digging. It can be an excellent hobby or business for retired gardeners. The disabled could enjoy their love of gardening without the hard work. Digging, planting, weeding, fertilizing and amending the soil is hard physical labor.
Pros: No Weeds
Hydroponic gardening involves no weeding whatsoever. Since plants are grown indoors in a controlled climate, wind blown and creeping weeds have no access to the plants. Weeding takes time and energy. Hydroponic gardening saves both.
Pros: Less Waste
The controlled climate of hydroponic gardening keeps out more than weeds. Indoor hydroponics means less disease as well. Since each plant is individually grown, disease has no way to spread from plant to plant. There are no insect problems either. These three factors add up to less wasted plants and produce.
Pros: Less Water
Hydroponics uses less water than conventional gardening. In conventional gardening the soil uses a lot of the water given to the plants. Hydroponic gardening allows plants to receive liquid directly. Hydroponic plants typically use less than 15% of the water used by their conventional counterparts.
Pros: Less Space
Hydroponic gardening can be done in less space overall than a conventional garden. In a conventional garden, plants must be spaced further away from each other, so as not to compete for soil nutrients. Hydroponic gardening allows more plants per square foot than conventional gardening.
Cons: Requires Technical Knowledge
Hydroponic gardening requires a good deal more technical knowledge than conventional gardening. Each plant must be given the exact lighting and nutrients needed for survival. It isn’t simply about planting some seeds and watching them grow.
Cons: More Expensive Equipment
Hydroponic gardening requires expensive equipment and the knowledge to arrange it properly. Special lighting and containers are needed for optimum growth. Mother nature has no role in the care and feeding labor of hydroponic gardening. All labor is done by the grower.
Cons: More Expensive Supplies
Supplies for hydroponic growing are expensive as well. There are special nutrients for each type of plant. Growing medium isn’t just water, it must be purchased too. Conventional gardening can be done quite cheaply, by comparison.
Cons: Higher Energy Use
Hydroponic gardening uses more energy than conventional gardening. A large portion of this energy use comes from special lighting required to grow plants indoors. Conventional gardening uses the sun as a free source of light.
Cons: Takes Up Living Space
Even though hydroponic gardening uses less overall space, it uses space in the home that might have been used for everyday living. Not everyone can afford a separate greenhouse for hydroponic gardening. Small spaces do not lend themselves well to hydroponic gardening.
Hydroponic gardening has many benefits. It can be done indoors. There is less digging and other manual labor. Hydroponic gardening involves little waste as there are no weeds, insects or diseases to control. There is also less water usage. The down side of hydroponic gardening begins with the technological knowledge involved. Factor in the cost of equipment supplies and energy. Hydroponics is not well suited to homes with little space. Weigh all the pros and cons of hydroponics to make the right decision for you.