When you live in a country with haphazard conditions you quickly get used to not being too dependent on the weather. This can often lead to employing methods that are damaging both to the local community and the environment. Pesticides, artificial lighting, chemical nutrient solutions all come to mind. In this article, I want to propose an alternative.
It can be sunny one day, then raining the next, red hot one day, then freezing cold! The typical “British Summer”, for example, is an incredibly confusing time and nobody knows what to expect.
As a gardener, this causes me an immense amount of frustration.
I like to grow a range of specialist plants, but the problem with this is that they require very specific conditions in order to grow. It’s just so hard to guarantee these conditions, and so often I would pass up the opportunity to grow a plant that I was interested in.
It wasn’t just me that suffered with this problem; the more gardeners I spoke to, the more I realized what a pain this was!
Recently I’ve been using a hydroponic system to grow my plants indoors. I’ve found that this nifty little system actually offers me an incredible amount of control over my growing without resorting to harmful methods, and this allows me to grow a considerably larger range of plants. If you want to grow more complex plants and improve your skills as a gardener, a hydroponic system is definitely a worthwhile investment.
No longer am I at the mercy of the unreliable British weather – my hydroponic system controls ever variable naturally and sustainably.
I have an LED light which gives the plants all the sunlight they could ever need. In fact, the light can produce lights at different ends of the light spectrum, meaning I can switch to different settings to give my plants the light they need at whatever stage of the growing cycle they’re at. Because the sunlight isn’t natural, I can allow my plants to bask in the artificial light for longer, meaning they actually receive more light than they would outside.
The same goes for temperature. I have a thermostat in place and can select the exact temperature I require. It can even be adjusted to provide a different temperature during the day to the night time. By providing an optimal, and most importantly, constant temperature, I know that whatever plant I choose will be able to thrive in the conditions I’ve provided.
Finally, the watering process. I’ve always tried to use soluble nutrients when watering my plants, and my plants can also absorb the nutrients that naturally occur in the soil. In a hydroponic system, the nutrients my plants receive can be tailored to a far greater detail, encouraging strong all round health. The system is designed to water the plants itself, which really saves your back. A few tweaks on the preprogrammed control panel and I’m good to go! The system will water my plants at the desired time of day and will even water them the amount I select.
You really do have complete control over your plants environment. There’s no greater feeling for me than growing a brand new type of plant and tweaking my system until I get it exactly right. By recording everything down, I know that if I ever want to grow that plant again I can have my system up and running in the best possible way in absolutely no time at all.
Without doubt, a soil-less growing system was the best investment I’ve ever made when it comes to my gardening.