Many people aren’t sure where to start when they decide to garden indoors. One of the biggest questions we get from beginners is, “what does it mean to garden hydroponically?”. There are so many steps involved, and so many variables to control, that it can be overwhelming to the novice. Luckily, we have compiled some good resources for you! First of all to answer the question “what is hydroponics?” I’ll first give you a little linguistic lesson. The word first came to be in the 1930s, and is derived from English and Greek. Hydro means water (in English) and “ponos” means labor (in Greek). Thus, hydroponics is laboring in water. As the noun is defined today, hydroponics means “the science of growing or the production of plants in nutrient rich solutions of moist inert material, instead of soil.” Basically it means growing plants in some kind of media other than soil. It can be a daunting scientific experiment at first, but after doing some research (and some of your own “trial and error”) gardening hydroponically is really clean, efficient, and sustainable; not to mention fun!
HawthorneGardening Co. has a great guide, linked below, which is the “8 Step Guide to Successful Indoor Hydro Gardening.” They lay out the “8 steps,” which are really more of a variable outline than actual steps, and then give basic details about each. The 8 steps they list are: the right environment, choose a method, start with good water, choose a media, nutrients/fertilizer, grow lighting, testing equipment, and optional accessories. This is a great list of areas that will need your attention and focus if you decide to start your own hydro garden. If you’re curious about starting your own garden (or just learning more about it), go check out their guide and venture into the awesome world of hydroponics.