While the word "Hydroponics" has only been around since 1936 when Dr. W.F. Gericke used it to describe the cultivation of both edible and ornamental plants in a solution of water and dissolved nutrients, the practice has been around for hundreds of years. The hanging gardens of Babylon and the floating gardens of the Mexican Aztecs are perfect examples of early hydroponic gardening. Egyptian hieroglyphics have even been found depicting the cultivation of plants in water as far back as several hundred years BC.
In this method of cultivation, plants are provided with the nutrients required for growth by a “nutrient” solution which is basically nutrient enriched mineral water. This nutrient solution can be circulated around the roots by either the passive force of gravity or the active force of an electromechanical pump Some systems simply bath the roots in nutrient solution and use an air pump to oxygenate the solution from below to prevent stagnation and provide the roots with important oxygen.
Plants grown hydroponically are typically more healthy than their soil grown counterparts since they receive a perfectly balanced diet and do not come in contact with soilborne pests and diseases. Super efficient hydroponic systems conserve water and nutrients by preventing evaporation and runoff. Since hydroponic systems deliver water and nutrients directly to the plant, crops can be grown closer together without starving each other and healthier plants add to a higher yield. By growing crops in a sterile environment, under ideal conditions, hydroponics saves the costs of soil preparation, insecticides, fungicides and losses due to drought and ground flooding.
Hydroponic gardening provides a super-efficient method to grow your own fresh and nutritious fruits and vegetables....particularly if you have limited space.
Check out the VERY impressive assortment of Hydroponic Gardening equipment at Kalyx.com