When it comes to choosing your grow method, whether it be for cannabis cultivation or for more traditional agricultural crops, you have many options. When it comes to growing without soil, rockwool, coco coir or other grow mediums, hydroponics, aeroponics and a hydro-aero hybrid are your most common options. In order to choose the best method for your specific growing needs, it’s important to know the differences between all three systems.
Choosing Your Grow Method
The first method, and likely most prominent in the minds of growers and consumers alike, is hydroponics. Hydroponics is a method of growing plants using mineral nutrient solutions in water, without soil. While some plants may grow in an inert medium like gravel, most hydroponics allow the roots to grow in the mineral solution only. Hydroponics gives a plant exactly what it needs, when it needs it, in the amount it needs in order to be as healthy as possible.
Aeroponics grows plants in an air or mist environment without the use of soil. Water is used to transmit nutrients to the plants, which is why some consider aeroponics to be a type of hydroponics. In aeroponics, plants are suspended in a closed environment. The plant’s roots, which hang in the closed environment, are sprayed with a nutrient-rich water solution. With both aeroponics and hydroponics, the controlled environment makes it easier to keep out pests, as opposed to plants grown in soil or another medium, but this is still a threat because these systems are not entirely closed off to the outside.
Using a hydro-aero hybrid system has many benefits and combines elements of both methods. Roots systems are very sensitive. Combining aeroponics and hydroponics allows for a backup nutrition and water supply if the aeroponic system fails. In the event of a power outage, for example, a hydro-aero hybrid system will still have water and nutrients necessary for growth. A hydro-aero hybrid system, like the Grow Tray System from Whole Plant Technologies, allows for ample oxygen supply, in addition to providing an ideal climate for roots to absorb all of the nutrients a plant needs.
From traditional food crops to cannabis cultivation, hydroponic, aeroponic and hydro-aero hybrid systems have many benefits as a grow medium-free solution. Depending on your crops and personal preferences, one method may be more beneficial than another. For more information about the hydro-aero hybrid Grow Tray System and its benefits, contact Whole Plant Technologies.