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Although the earliest discussions of growing plants in water, without soil, appeared in the 1600s, it wasn’t until the 1800s that what was called solution culture got serious development. However, it was not used on any large scale until the 1920s, when Frederick Gericke, at the University of California at Berkeley, made some advances in creating nutrient solutions. Although the university at that time was unsupportive of his developments, interest in the subject of soilless crop production grew.
For those interested in hydroponics, Los Angeles has many suppliers who are aware of the latest developments in such methods. Gericke’s “ground breaking” research on the nutrients plants need in a watering solution have led to modern products that make hydroponics much more productive.
Pulling Up the Roots
Most people when they think of growing plants automatically think of the plant roots being buried in soil of some sort. The physical appearance of roots make people think that the plants can only gain nourishment by drawing it from soil. However, roots work just as well when they have immediate access to the needed minerals in water. Once the grower has determined how much or how little water the particular type of plant requires, they can easily adjust the available water to meet that need, recycling through the system the water that isn’t absorbed into the plants.
A grower new to hydroponics might be concerned about having the best hydroponics supplies and can easily find advice from an experienced vendor like Pacific Coast Hydroponics. An expert can advise the new grower on what is needed for the intended crop, including what water levels are best suited for the plants.
Challenges in Going Soilless
One of the first things a grower needs to pay attention to when preparing plants for the hydroponic reservoirs is to make sure that any original potting soil has been cleaned from the roots. If soil gets into the system it can clog filters. Another concern is making sure the plants get adequate light for their growth process. Help can be found in choosing the appropriate grow lights for the particular crop by speaking with an expert in hydroponics. There are a wide variety of lamps that cover a range of brightness and the color spectrum. Not all plants respond to the same light, so this also has to be taken into consideration.
Modern hydroponics can require becoming familiar with new equipment. There are meters to measure the mineral balance of the nutrient solutions for the plants. Maintaining the lighting system for the growing chamber is also a concern. There are also monitors for the oxygen and carbon dioxide levels around the plants. All these things can be purchased at a well-stocked and knowledgeable hydroponics store like Pacific Coast Hydroponics. Our staff can advise you on the best selections for your needs - modern hydroponic gardening does not have to stay a mystery.