While a vertical hydroponic system can look impressive, its real value is turning a normally underutilized space in your home into a productive and space-saving garden. Instead of just having photos or a bookshelf on your wall you can have a beautiful garden growing flowers, herbs, and vegetables for you to enjoy. With a tower system you can grow a larger number of plants in a smaller area, and still have room to move around freely.

What is the difference in growing plants vertically? Normally, in a standard garden with soil or in a hydro grow box the plants are grown on a horizontal surface. This layout requires space for the grow area as well as extra space for you to move between or around the plants to care for them or to harvest. If you don’t have much space available this limits how many plants you can grow, and it can make it difficult to have access to the plants to care for them and make sure they are healthy.

A vertical layout allows you to have a larger area that can hold more plant sites, and with more sites you can grow a wider selection of plants and have larger yields. For instance, let’s say you like to eat fresh salads. You can grow a variety of lettuce to make a spring salad mix, and then have fresh herbs growing alongside to add more flavor, like basil, dill, mint, oregano or thyme. Think how much you can save by growing your own instead of purchasing each of these items at the grocery store, and how much better your food will taste with the herbs being fresh picked right before dinner.

There are several benefits of a vertical hydroponic system that are especially good for older gardeners who may have issues with their knees and back, or for people with disabilities that limit their movement. First, as the plants are growing in a nutrient solution you will not need to lift heavy bags of potting soil into your home. Also, with the plants arranged neatly in rows on a wall or in a tower this allows much easier access to the plants for tending and harvesting.

A vertical hydro system also makes maintenance simple. An electric pump in the reservoir below the system pumps the nutrient solution up through connecting hoses that run along the plant sites. These systems often use drip emitters at the base of each plant to deliver the solution to the roots, which then drains back down into the reservoir. Sometimes these emitters get clogged or need to be adjusted so they are flowing correctly. With a vertical hydroponic system each of the emitters is easy to reach and adjust. It is also easy to manage your plants, and if you need to remove a plant it is simple to lift it out of its site and move it to another site.

If you want to start growing fresh vegetables and herbs indoors but you are limited for space, or if you have mobility issues that make it difficult to reach around a conventional growing table, then a vertical hydroponics system could be for you.