Beyond Agriculture: 5 Types Hydroponic Systems for Your Garden

Hydroponics is a method of growing and raising plants in a nutrient-rich, water-based solution. It does not use any soil. Instead, the root is supported using a dormant medium such as perlite, peat moss, rock wool, vermiculite or clay pellets.

The basic assumption of hydroponics is to allow the root of plants to come in direct contact with the nutrients, while also giving access to oxygen that is essential for proper growth and raising of plants. If you want to build a hydroponic garden, here are the types you might consider creating.

The Deep Water Culture System

The Deep Water Culture or DWC which is also known as the reservoir system is the easiest method so far of growing plants using the hydroponics system. In Deep Water Culture hydroponic method, the nutrient solution caters the roots of the plants.

While an air pump in the aquarium oxygenates the nutrient solution, it manages and keeps the roots from drowning. Remember to prevent the light from penetrating into your system, since it can cause the growth of algae that can bring devastation on your system.

The main benefit of utilizing a Deep Water Culture system is that there are no spray emitters that clogs. Thus, making DWC an excellent option for organic hydroponics, because some hydroponics systems that use natural nutrients are more likely to clog.

Nutrient Film Technique

The NFT method or Nutrient Film Technique is an active recovery type of hydroponic system. This method uses submersible pumps while recycling the nutrient solutions. The NFT also uses a reservoir of a submersible pump that draws the nutrient solutions into the grow-tube and suspends the roots of the plants.

The grow-tube is in a downward position, so the nutrient solution can run over the roots and go back into the storage. Thus, the nutrient solution can flow over the roots for 24 hours each day. Moreover, oxygen is essential in the grow-tube, and it must use capillary matting or air stones for fair grow.

The plants are being held up through a grow-basket or collar without any growing medium. The NFT system is efficient, although, some beginners in hydroponic system find it challenging to tune.

It can also be very cruel since no growing medium is available to hold any moisture. Any period of interference in the flow of nutrients can dry out the roots and can cause the plant to suffer and worse, die.

Learn the Ebb and Flow System

The Ebb and Flow type of hydroponics is also an active recovery type system. This method also uses a submersible pump in the tank, while the upper tray holds the plants. They work on a theory of basic flood and drain approach.

The reservoir keeps the pump and nutrient solution. When you turn on the pump, the nutrient solution is blown up to the top tray and then flows to the roots of the plants. The pump should work for 20 to 30 minutes, to achieve a flood cycle.

When the water reaches a set level, an overflow fitting or pipe supports the nutrient solution to move back into the storage. The pump must continue for the entire flood cycle. After that, the nutrient solution will slowly flow back into the reservoir using the pump.

The Hydroponic Drip System

Source: Wikipedia

The drip system of hydroponics is rather simple. This system works by offering a slow flow of nutrient solution into the hydroponic mechanism. It is better to use a slow draining medium such as peat moss, coconut coir or Rockwool. Also, you can use a faster medium of draining, but you may need to use a quicker dripping emitter.

The disadvantage of this system is that the emitters or drippers are prone to clogging. You may decide not to use drip systems, though it can be a beneficial way for growing plants, just make sure to avoid the clogs that can cause trouble to your system.

Consider Aeroponics System

Aeroponics is also a hydroponics system in which the roots of the plants are showered with a nutrient solution while fixed in the air. There are two fundamental ways to get the nutrient solution to the open roots.

The first way requires a fine spray spout to wet the roots. And the second option needs a pond fogger. If you want to use a pond fogger, make sure to apply a Teflon covered disc, since it reduces the amount of maintenance needed.


Hydroponics is a functional method of gardening that raises plants in a soil-free environment and is a nutrient-based solution. An efficient, sustainable and environmentally friendly way to grow food.

However, growing plants in a hydroponic system require little agricultural skills to achieve your goal smoothly. You can try to visit online shops like Gstore for various choices of gardening tools in case you wanted to build your hydroponic garden.

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