Plants growing in small spaces are always part of a productive and manageable plan. Hydroponic plants occupy less space, and all you need to do is remain plugged in and enjoy hydroponics. This hobby will help you grow your favorite fruits and vegetables in the comfort of your home.
Beginners are better off trying out hydroponic projects with compact systems that are easy to set up and fit into their budget. Ready kits are available for beginners to get a feel of how hydroponics project work.
For example, lettuce is the obvious choice of many, as this leafy vegetable occupies less space and needs little attention. Users cut out the excess outer leaves to include in their daily salad, then wait for a short while until the inner leaves grow outward resulting in a fresh harvest.
There is very little effort needed to maintain this crop. Once your initial hydroponic project is a success, try out other crops like melons and vegetables.
Here are some hydroponic plants to consider, if you’re venturing into your first hydroponic project with limited budget and space.
You’ll find leafy greens the best option when starting out as a beginner. Similar to a lettuce crop, you have several other choices including mustard greens and arugula. Just make sure you do not indulge in corn or melon crops, as they take up space.
Your hobby may turn out to be a costly affair. For a shift from the regular lettuce crop, try spinach instead. Ensure you cut off the excess outer leaves to provide for air circulation throughout the crop. You’ll get a steady flow of spinach leaves in your daily salad, and they taste awesome.
The basic requirements to grow vegetables in your hydroponic garden remain the same, while vegetables like potatoes and carrots that grow under the soil need special environments.
Tomatoes grown hydroponically are more nutritious and flavorful when directly plucked from your garden. They grow along vines, so the nutrient solution reaches the crop through a trellis, which can be automated.
If you want to experience a dramatic increase in flavor, try fresh herbs grown hydroponically. You’ll be surprised at the number of herbs that can be grown with just some minor adjustments in the project. For instance, basil is one of the best herbs for any hydroponic project.
For massive success, choose herbs known to thrive in wet conditions like parsley, oregano, sweet marjoram, and rosemary. In drier conditions, follow specific instructions and case studies that met with success in your region.
With some experience, you’ll be ready to grow cucumbers using the popular hydroponic raft system. This crop is best suited for the summer season, as cucumbers require lot of light to develop into juicy vegetables. Also, you’ll need a sort of support system to prevent these cucumbers from tipping over when they grow in size. It’s best to grow these heavy hydroponic plants outdoors.
Similar to tomatoes and cucumbers, peppers are vining plants that thrive in hydroponic conditions and require very little maintenance. If you have a greenhouse, this is probably one of the best vegetables over a long growing season.
Use large buckets for the roots to grow easily, and provide a vertical support system for the peppers to grow upwards. You can use a string to support the vine, as this helps you monitor the crop at regular intervals.
Though there are different kinds of fruits that thrive in hydroponic conditions, it’s best to start with hydroponic plants that yield small, lightweight fruits. Once you successfully grow the fruit of your choice, transfer the crop to a regular soil-based garden.
Strawberries and blueberries are great choices, though you need to follow specific systems and guidelines to ensure the crop does not suffer from humidity issues resulting in a lengthy yield period.
Then shift over to larger fruits like watermelons with the ebb-and-flow system. The plant floats on top of the nutrient-filled water with its vines and melons supported in the upward direction.
Hydroponic crops occupy very little space, so you have the chance to grow herbs, vegetables, and fruits at several locations. Try growing herbs on your windowsill or Rosemary just outside your kitchen to add flavor to your meats.
Once you’re familiar with how the Deep Water Culture (DWC) and ebb-and-flow systems work, you’ll find it difficult to stop yourself from growing exotic hydroponic plants. Again, ensure you choose the best hydroponic system backed and endorsed by the experts.