Commercial cannabis growers have been using the hydroponic growing systems for many years now, but home cannabis growers are embracing this idea as the way to have a homegrown marijuana year-around. And if you are thinking about trying a hydroponic grow system, you are definitely wondering what kind of hydroponic equipment and tools you will need and how much would this equipment for this growing method cost.
What is Hydroponics?
Hydroponic growing systems are the cultivation of plants without the use of soil. Hydroponic weed growing systems are planted in a growing medium and maintained with oxygen, water, and nutrient-rich solutions. This growing system helps fast growth, superior quality, and higher yields. Once the plant is grown in the soil, its roots are long-lasting looking for the needed nutrition to sustain the plants. If the root of the plants is exposed directly to nutrition and water, the plant doesn’t have to put any energy in supporting itself. The power the roots will be spending having water and food could be redirected to the plant’s full development. The leaf growth thrives and does the blooming of flowers and fruits as a result.
Benefits of Using Hydroponics
Marijuana plants grow quickly with hydroponics because it is a more effective way to grow them. For instance, most cannabis growers agree that the plants would grow at least 20% faster in complete hydroponic growing systems than the soil. A big-time saver!
Scientists have plenty of theories about this matter, but in a matter of fact, experts also agree that you could expect at least 20-25% higher yields with hydroponic weed growing systems unlike growing in the soil.
This could be an advantage because you might live in an area where there’s no good soil to grow marijuana plants outdoors, or you do not have any outdoor area because you live in an urban area. With the homemade hydroponic growing systems you still grow your marijuana plant without needing the soil.
You can keep the plants closer together because your plant doesn’t need to expand their roots out in the soil to get the nutrients they need. This will save a lot of space and one of the astonishing features about indoor hydroponic growing systems is how many plants could be put together and be grown in a small space. This is perfect for cannabis growers who live in an urban area with a little space.
The plants get the exact amount of water they need and the rest are still in the reservoir to be used later because you’re using reservoirs that are covered to avoid evaporation and no water leakage at the bottom. Unlike soil gardening where you have to water your cannabis plants regularly and most of the water is wasted. It is easy to see how the same amount of water is used to water your plant in the soil for a day. You could water a cannabis plant in a simple cheap hydroponic growing systems for multiple dates or even one week at a time. For short, you could save around 90% of water by shifting to hydroponic growing systems.
Fewer Diseases and Pests
Your plant will always get rid of a lot of soil-borne pests and diseases that could usually damage your plant because you are not using soil.
The Easiest Type of Hydroponics System To Setup
Most cannabis hydroponics experts will agree that a Deep Water Culture hydroponics system is the easiest kind of indoor hydroponic growing system because it doesn’t require a lot of materials and supplies. So here are the thing to know-how to get started:
In a Deep Water Culture hydro system, you will simply fill a reservoir with your nutrient solution. Then, you put up the roots of your plant in that solution so they receive a continuous, stray supply of oxygen, nutrients, and water. Then a consistent oxygen supply will be added to the water. The most usual method that cannabis growers oxygenate the nutrient solution reservoir is with an airstone and air pump to pump the bubble in it. This will keep the root of your plants from “drowning” which is the real concern because your cannabis plant would suck the oxygen they needed out of the water. Using the Deep Water culture system, you will find it very simple to set up and simply low-maintenance making it ideal for DIY hydroponic growing systems newbies.
Air stones and Air Pumps
The plants that are deluged in the water could quickly drown if the water isn’t sufficiently oxygenated. Air stones are scattered small bubbles of dissolved oxygen all over your nutrient solution tank. These bubbles help evenly dispense the dissolved nutrients in the solution. Air stones don’t produce oxygen on their own. They needed to be attached to an external air pump through a cloudy food grade plastic tubing. Air pumps and air stores are famous aquarium components and could be bought easily at pet stores.
Types of Hydroponics Growing Systems
Deep water culture systems
Deep Water Culture Hydroponics or DWC are plants simply put in oxygenated water. DWC is one of the most popular and easiest methods of hydroponic growing systems in the market. A DWC hangs a net pot holding the plants above a deep tank of oxygen-rich nutrient solution. The roots of the plants are poured over into the solution giving it lasting access to nutrition, oxygen, and water. DWC is considered by some to be the purest form of hydroponic grow system.
In this method, the plants are settled in growing media on a tray that sits on the top of a reservoir. These reservoirs house a water solution with dissolved nutrients. Wicks moves from the reservoir to the growing tray. Nutrients and water flow up the saturated and wick the growing media around the roots of the plants. These wicks could be made of materials as simple string, rope, or felt. Wick systems are the most simple form of hydroponic weed growing systems, so far. This method is non-resistant hydroponics, which means they do not need mechanical parts like pumps to work. This makes it perfect for situations where electricity is neither unavailable or unreliable.
Nutrient film technique systems
Nutrient Film Technique also known as the NFT system deluged the plant over a stream of consistent flowering nutrient solution that washed over the end of the roots of the plant. The roots holding the plants are inclining, enabling water to run down the length of the growing tray prior to draining in the reservoir below. The water reservoir is oxygenated through air stones. An under-water pump would then pump the nutrient-rich water out of the reservoir and back to the top of the channel. The NFT is a recirculating hydroponic system.
Ebb and flow systems
Ebb and Flow hydroponics work by soaking a growing bed with a nutrient solution from a reservoir below. The under-water pump in the reservoir is provided with a timer. One the time begins, the pump fills up the growing bed with the nutrients and water. Once the timer stops, gravity gradually drains the water out of the growing bed and drives it back to the reservoir. The system. This system is provided with an overflowing tube to make sure flooding does not exceed a particular level and harm the marijuana plants. Unlike the recent systems mentioned above, the marijuana plants in an ebb and flow system aren’t consistently exposed to the water. While the growing bed is flooded, the marijuana plants absorb the nutrient solution via roots. Once the water ebb and the growing bed empties, the roots will dry out. The dry out roots would then be oxygenated in the meantime before the next flood. The length of time between floods is oppressed by the size of the growing bed and the size of the plants.
In a Drip system, an oxygenated and nutrient-rich tank pumps solution via a channel to tubes to every plant. This mixture is dripped gradually in the growing medium surrounding the roots, keeping the marijuana plants well-nourished and moist. These methods are the most famous and widespread method of hydroponics, specifically among commercial cannabis growers. Drip systems could be massive irrigation operations or individual plants.
Aeroponics put the plants in the air and expose the naked roots to a nutrient-filled mist. These methods are enclosed frameworks, like towers or tubes, that could hold a multitude of cannabis plants at once. Nutrients and waste are stored in a reservoir, and then pumped to a nozzle that grinds the solution and spreads it as a fine mist. The mists are usually released from the top of the tubes, allowing them to fall down the chamber. Other aeroponics consistently mists the root of the plant, just like the NFT systems uncover the roots of the nutrients film all the time. Other works like the ebb and flow system, and spraying the plant’s roots with mists in the meantime. These methods don’t need usage media to thrive. The cannabis roots’ constant exposure to air enables them to drink in oxygen and grow at an escalated rate.