Hydroponics vs. Soil
BC Northern Lights uses hydroponic technology in our grow boxes, and there are many reasons why.
The soil versus hydroponics debate and indoor growing versus outdoor growing debate are essentially the same. Just like growing plants outdoors, soil is less expensive and requires less equipment. Soil also self-regulates for the most part; it gages its environment, and adjusts accordingly. Soil is any plant’s natural grow medium, so generally, it is gentler to plants. It’s also easy to use if you’ve got a knack for gardening.
Why not soil?
The downside of growing plants in soil is that, like in nature, your plants would take longer to grow.
If there are any defects in your plants, it’ll take longer for those defects to show, and so ultimately, your plants would also take longer to recover. That’s both a waste of time and money.
During the first few weeks of growth, you’ll also have to tend to your soil-grown plants with some serious TLC. If you don’t have the time or patience for this, soil is probably not your best option.
Bugs are also a serious threat to soil-grown plants. No one likes bugs, and no one likes infestations. Avoiding soil altogether is a pretty good option if you don’t feel like dealing with an infestation – and this is where hydroponics comes into play.
On top of the obvious benefit – discreet, customized growing – growing hydroponic plants means you have complete control over what sort of nutrients your plants get. You can minimize potential problems by doing this.
Harvesting also comes sooner with hydroponics as hydroponics gives your plants the ability to reduce up to two weeks of grow time. This is because you’re giving nutrients directly to the plants and because your plants don’t have to use any energy on finding said nutrients. They can concentrate on growing big and tall instead. In fact, grown under the same conditions, a hydroponic plant can grow up to 30-50% faster than a soil plant.
Because your plants grow faster, you can also identify issues earlier on, meaning that these issues can be tended to or repair themselves faster as well. Needless to say, this also implies that you have to supply nutrients to your plant manually. Nutrients that you can purchase are just as good as what soil supplies for your plants.
Getting pH right
The pH levels of your growing medium is also a big thing to consider. With hydroponics, you can also control the pH levels of the plant.
Generally speaking, your plants prefer pH in the lower range, around 5.2 to 5.9. Any higher than that, then your plant can be prevented from growing. This means that maintaining pH manually will further reduce potential problems with your plants.
Cleanliness is key
This is pretty obvious, but growing with hydroponics is a much cleaner. Think of all the soil spills you won’t have! This also means no weeds, no insects, and no parasites.
Soil is a medium that has the ability to breed all of those annoying things, so again, without it, you are pre-emptively removing potential problems your plants may have.
A fit for everyone
There are six main types of hydroponic set-ups. The different types are: the drip system, the ebb and flow system, the NFT (nutrient film technique) system, the water culture system, the wick system, and the aeroponic system.
Some are less involved than others, but all have the same guarantee that any hydroponic system holds: they’re fairly easy to maintain, clean, and requires a lot less space. And of course, less space taken up by soil means more room for plants. More plants means more efficient growing, and bigger yields.