A report from Business Wire reveals that the hydroponics market is big business. It is expected to grow globally from just under $20 billion in 2015 to just over $27 billion by 2020. Farmers are excited about hydroponic crops and sales of the hydroponic cloning machine and hydroponic grow supplies have skyrocketed as farmers discover hydroponic crops are able to use 90% less water than the same crops in traditional soil farming setups. It’s also possible to plant approximately four times the number of crops using hydroponics in the same amount of space that one would use for traditional soil farming. Finally, hydroponic plants not only use less water and take up less space, but they also grow between two and three times faster than plants that are seeded outdoors using traditional farming methods. Having the right cloner, bulk nutrients, organics, and grow lights can make all the difference to having a successful hydroponic system.
The Right Cloner
A cloner is a device that houses and grows new plants, or clones, cut from existing plants. Most often, a cloner needs to provide a humid environment and will be some sort of partially sealed dome. A cloner can be big enough to grow just one or two plants, or big enough to accommodate 25 or so. It is important that a cloner provide a suitable water and nutrient solution or some other type of reusable medium for growing. A cloner may be equipped with an aerator for optimal distribution of nutrients, and a cloner may also come with special inserts that anchor the plants within the system. The cloner may be so self-sufficient that it really only requires a checkup of nutrient levels, or it may require a great deal of maintenance in order to keep it in good shape. This will depend on the cloner that is chosen, and different cloners are designed for different types of plants and setups.
Another important issue in hydroponics is having the proper grow lights. Plants love light and use its energy to convert into their own chemical energy. This means having the right grow lights can be essential to having healthy, thriving plants. Typical grow lights are measured by lumens, which is just a way of expressing the perceived power of light. The higher the intensity of grow lights, the more plants grow. It’s also important that grow lights cover the full spectrum of light that plants need in order to stimulate healthy growth. Grow lights come in high-intensity discharge, LED, florescent, and incandescent. Each has its benefits and drawbacks when applied to particular kinds of plants. Your local organics and plant support supply company can give you more information on which grow lights will be best for your setup.
Nutrients are also essential for the growth of all plants. This is especially true when dealing with hydroponics because there is no soil, and soil is where plant roots normally get their nutrients. The special fertilizers and nutrients used for hydroponic setups have to contain all of the nutrients sufficient for all of the plants using the system. As with people, plants need both essential nutrients and micronutrients in order to thrive. All plants require nitrogen, potassium, phosphorus, calcium, magnesium, iron, manganese, copper, and zinc at the least. Some plants will thrive with the addition of other nutrients such as cobalt, selenium, or even nickel. Plants that are deficient in these important nutrients will begin to show symptoms of deficiency, such as changing leaf color, stunted growth, or necrotic spotted areas of growth. Before starting out on any particular hydroponics plan, it is important to find out precisely what nutrients the plants you plan to grow will need. Then it’s important to familiarize yourself with the signs of malnutrition and which nutrient is necessary to correct the problem.
Hydroponics can be a great way to grow thriving crops in the small amount of space and with limited amounts of water and nutrients. However, it is important to do it right. All plants grown in such a way need the right cloner to start out in life, the right light to thrive, and the appropriate nutrients to grow.