To the casual gardener, plant growth may appear as simple as tossing a few seeds into the ground and watering them daily. However, horticulture is hardly ever that simple. If you’re going without the appropriate plant food in favour of a hose, you’re already doing it wrong. If you’re a first-time grower weighing the pros and cons of various methods, consider the most popular practices listed below.
When Should You Use Soil?
Is there ever a reason not to use soil when pursuing a gardening product? There is—but soil gardening is ideal for those who don’t have the time and resources to consider other options. When growing herbs and edibles, soil tends to maintain a healthier and more visible taste towards the end of the plant’s growth cycle.
With the help of soil nutrient enhancers, green thumb rookies can enjoy growing plants entirely outside. Not to mention, the method is far more risk-averse than others. It’s also more cost-effective in that it won’t require a set-up outside of natural light.
When Should You Consider Hydroponics?
While soil growth is considered a traditional method, hydroponics is the formula of the future. Hydroponics refers to the use of a water reservoir and a medium that isn’t soil. With a hydroponics system, you can reap the immediate benefits of fewer pests, faster growth, and a larger overall yield of plants.
That said, the hydroponics route isn’t a cheap one. Along with increased capital, investors in a hydroponics system will have to dedicate a significant amount of time and effort to ensure optimal growth. Unlike a soil set-up, hydroponics requires direct action and more attention.
In the end, the method you choose to employ will be entirely up to your preferences, budget, and capabilities. However, it’s important to note the clear advantages of a hydroponics system.
Why Hydroponics Has the Edge Over Soil
Lovers of hydroponics systems will vouch for their distinct advantage over soil, which includes the following:
- Faster Results: Who doesn’t want to see faster results? As compared to soil plants growing under the same conditions, hydroponics systems see yields up to 30 – 50% quicker than usual.
- No Chemicals: Some gardeners will turn to chemical root enhancers when they feel they have no other options. By eliminating soil, you reduce the risk of disease—which means you can say goodbye to chemical fertilisers and pest control.
- Space-Saving: Hydroponics systems are built vertically, which saves far more space than traditional methods do.
- Complete Control: Without the wrath of unexpected natural conditions, you can control every factor of your plant’s life cycle.
- Water-Saving: Ideal for growing in dry and arid locations, hydroponics systems don’t require much water. These systems have proven to be a game-changer in developing areas with less natural vegetation.
- No Digging or Weeding: Perhaps any gardener’s nightmare is the need to dig and weed on a hot summer day. Now you won’t have to—just pour some perlite into your containers.
- A Scientific Approach: With hydroponics, you can focus more on the scientific aspect of planting. As you learn, you can create more optimal set-ups and think about other useful techniques.
- Local Growing: Because of how well they work, any home is suitable for a hydroponics system, which can significantly reduce food security issues.
- Repeatability: Once you’ve discovered the perfect hydroponics set-up, chances are you won’t have to make any adjustments to get an excellent yield every time.
Whether an apartment-dweller or owner to a larger space, a hydroponics system can work for you and the entire family. If its apparent benefits aren’t enough to push you towards this groundbreaking gardening method, do more research online.
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