The farming industry is changing in many ways these days, in hopes of becoming more eco-friendly and less damaging to the environment. Farms are seeking alternative methods that retain their production levels while lessening their environmental impact.

This is very much evident in the rise of hydroponic farming. Hydroponics are a relatively new approach, one highly dependent on technology in order to function effectively. The approach fundamentally changes the way we farm, thus changing how resources are used, as well.

What Is It?

Plants find nourishment through the process known as photosynthesis, meaning their energy comes from the sun, which creates the nutrients they need to grow. As you might notice, soil is not a required ingredient for photosynthesis itself. Hydroponic farming takes advantage of this, approaching farming in a way that excludes soil altogether. Planting is done in an artificial environment, one that is more productive than that natural type we are used to.


There are many advantages that are coming from this approach to agriculture. Firstly, it allows you to grow food regardless of where you are. The biggest challenge for agriculture is to find the soil that’s suitable to your needs and with hydroponic farming it doesn’t matter.

It also means that you have much less expenses to worry about as a farmer since you don’t need to work on exploiting and improving the soil and that’s what most of the farm work is about. Since you’re growing indoors there are also advantages coming from precision farming techniques.

How does it work?

There are a few ways to set up a hydroponic farm. The goal in all the cases is the replicate the role the soil plays for a plant without actually having a crop planted in the soil. This is commonly done with what’s called nutrient-film technique.

When you do so, you stand your plants in a plastic trough and let a nutrient solution trickle past their roots (with the help of gravity and a pump). Alternative options is to grow plants with their roots supported by a nutrient-enriched medium such as rockwool, sand, or vermiculite, which acts as a sterile substitute for soil.


As with any type of work, there are downsides to the approach as well. It is important to familiarize yourself with the risks, so you will know what to expect. This doesn’t mean you should get discouraged, but simply be on the lookout for what could go wrong.

Hydroponics require quite a bit of equipment and indoor space to be effective, requiring a lot of early investing. This is especially true if you are setting up an urban hydroponic farm.

Types Of Hydroponic Farms

There are a few varieties of hydroponic farms out there, but the two main types are passive, and active. Passive systems utilize some sort of medium to supply plants with nutrients, whereas active systems rely on sets of pipes to bring water and nutrients to plants.

System Options

There are different settings that you could use to operate a hydroponic farm, and choosing the right system could help you avoid problems early on. Such systems include the wick system, which features crops supported by trays, and water culture systems. The latter is the simplest of all active systems, requiring crop roots to be immersed in water to obtain their nutrients.


Hydroponic farming is considered the future of agriculture, and for good reason. It allows crops to be grown without soil, often indoors even in urban settings.


Date:Jan 8, 2020

Category:Local Agriculture, Sustainability


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