For saving space and soil, this method also has several
other benefits, including no soil-borne diseases, no
weeds to pull and no soil to till, run-of-the-mill side
benefits of soil-less gardening.

Hydroponic Nutrients

The greatest advantage of hydroponic growing is that it allow you to precisely control the growing environment surrounding your plants. This includes complete control of every nutrient available to the plant's roots. Soil growing does not permit this flexibility because soil can contain many minerals and salts. In an indoor hydroponic system, the growing medium does not contain any nutrients on its own, allowing the indoor gardening to control the exact amount of hydroponic nutrients received by the plant just by adjusting the concentration of the hydroponic nutrient solution.

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Plants grown outdoors in soil obtain their nutrients from the decomposed matter of organic material. Here is a very non-scientific description of the process: All organic matter that falls to the ground is decomposed by fungi or digested by insects and animals until it provides a compost. This compost is then fed off of by microbes which expel the plant's essential nutrients as its waste products. Rain washes these elements deep into the soil, where they remain until absorbed by a plant's roots.

There are 3 primary hydroponic nutrients which are required by your plants for maximum yield. These are Nitrogen (N), Phosphorus (P), and Potassium (K). The concentration of each is usually listed on the nutrient solution's label. For example, a solution with 20-20-20 on the label contains 20% N, 20% P, and 20% K.

There are also several secondary hydroponic nutrients that are used by the plant at various times during its growth cycle, but are not as essential as the primary nutrients. Small amounts of these minerals are added to most hydroponic nutrient products to ensure that your plants receive the full spectrum of the elements they need. Some of these secondary hydroponic nutrients include Calcium, Magnesium, Sulfur, Iron, Molybdenum, and Boron.

Indoor Gardening Guide


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