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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.

0 Comments | Posted in Hydroponics Details Indoor Gardening By Florence B. Harrell

Garden Delights In Every Season: Growing Vegetables Indoors With Hydroponics

Imagine plucking a juicy red tomato right off the vine to top off your burger or put in your salad. See yourself picking a freshly grown spicy hot pepper that you can use to flavor your dishes. Picture yourself harvesting your own cucumbers or squash for your recipes. Now, imagine that you're picking these veggies in your pajamas inside with a foot of snow covering your backyard!

This delicious vision isn't just a dream; it can be a reality with a hydroponics vegetable garden. Hydroponics is a way of organic gardening indoors in any season without having to deal with messy potting soil. You can grow a wide variety of vegetables indoors in a hydroponics system, and this step-by-step guide will tell you how.

1. Take a plastic seedling tray and fill it up with peat moss, which you can purchase online and at home and garden stores. Spritz the peat moss with a water bottle until it is wet to the touch. You want it to feel like a sponge that is damp but not dripping wet.

2. Plant your vegetable seeds according to the depth instructions on the packaging. For best results when you're starting your first garden, pick vegetables that grow low to the ground and that grow quickly, such as leafy greens like kale or lettuce, broccoli or cauliflower.

3. Put plastic on the tray and place the entire setup on a windowsill that receives light but not direct sunlight.

4. Check your plants every day. If the peat moss is dry, spritz it the way that you did in Step 1. When the seeds sprout, remove the plastic.

5. Continue checking the seeds daily. Continue until the plants are beginning to outgrow the tray.

6. When the plants are too big, take each one gently out of the tray. Use water on low pressure to clean the peat moss away from the roots.

7. Take an aquarium fish tank and encase it with aluminum foil to block out the light and help the plants grow.

8. Purchase a hydroponics nutrient solution and mix it with water as directed on the packaging.

9. Pour the nutrient and water solution into the fish tank.

10. Connect a fish tank bubbler to a tank air pump with plastic tubing and gently put the bubbler down on the bottom of the tank.

11. Use scissors to trim a piece of Styrofoam sheeting to slightly smaller than the length and width of the fish tank.

12. Make holes inside of the sheet that are slightly smaller than the mouth of the Styrofoam coffee cups that you purchased.

13. Use an exacto knife to make slits in the sides of the cups.

14. Fill each cup up completely with vermiculite.

15. Make a depression enough to accommodate your plants inside of the vermiculite-filled cups.

16. Carefully set one plant in each cup.

17. Put the Styrofoam cups into the holes of the Styrofoam sheet.

18. Put the Styrofoam sheet with the cups inside of the fish tank.

19. Turn on the bubble.

20. Put the fish tank underneath hydroponics growing lights.

21. Monitor your plants and wait for your vegetables to grow!

These simple steps will have you enjoying your own fresh-from-the-garden vegetables all year round in no time!

0 Comments | Posted in News Fruits & Vegetable Gardening Indoor Gardening By Charles R. Sword

Each day, more and more people are finding out just how fun and how profitable it can be growing herbs in hydroponics. The fun part is being able to grow plants in your home grow room any time of the year, and the profitable part is the growing demand for produce picked fresh from a home herb garden.

It is easy now to grow plants in hydro, and gardeners who were used to growing in soil are now finding they can enjoy gardening growing the plants in a nutrient solution under grow lights. There are some differences in the techniques, but the fundamentals of growing plants, flowers, or vegetables, from seeds or from cuttings, are the same. The major differences are providing a light source with plant lights rather than the sun, and controlling the pH and the levels of nutrients with routine water treatment.

There are two drivers of the demand for hydroponically produced food; the quality of the vegetables and herbs in your local grocery store, and the ‘foodie’ movement. With many vegetables now being imported from Mexico and South America, even though they may look good, they may not be of the quality people want for themselves or their families. There may be unhealthy pesticides used when growing the plants, and since they are shipped such long distances the food is picked before it is ripe, causing it to lack flavor and nutrition.

The foodie movement is leading a push to high quality foods with the maximum flavor and nutrients. This has led restaurants and groceries to seek suppliers of fresh vegetables and herbs that are locally produced, without the worry of harmful pesticides or a lack of flavor. Another example of this growing trend is how farmers’ markets are popping up in most cities and towns, and how the prices are higher than you see in your local grocery.

These premium quality products bring a premium price, and a gardener who can grow the best herbs and vegetables will have no problem selling them to this eager market. If you can supply a product that is different from what you can normally find, grown with care, free of pesticides, and picked at the peak of freshness, you will find that customers will begin to contact you to make sure they are the first in line at harvest time.

The best plants to start out with when you are beginning to sell to restaurants and markets are heirloom tomatoes, specialty lettuces, and uncommon herbs. Restaurants, in particular, are always looking for ways to set themselves apart, and a wide selection of produce allows them to update their menus and keep the customers coming in.

In a grow room with a hydro system and grow lights you can offer a selection of products, and grow them fast. A plant grown in a hydroponic grow box will grow between 30% and 50% faster than a plant in soil, and you won’t have to worry about pests or weather affecting your crop.

As the gardener who has the best produce, the quickest delivery times, and the ability to provide a variety of herbs and vegetables, you will find that being a hydroponic gardener can be both fun and profitable.

0 Comments | Posted in Hydroponics Details Indoor Gardening By Charles R. Sword

Since 1971 when President Richard Nixon declared war on drugs, everything from crack cocaine to marijuana has been illegal in the United States. Forty years later the war on drugs has been anything but successful. These facts make it pretty clear that ridding of drugs in the U.S. is pretty much impossible.

Most law enforcement agencies still focus on the illegal trafficking using of hard drugs, such as cocaine and heroin, but bringing in pot smokers or those possessing pot has not been on the top of the list where crimes are concerned.

Over the past 10 years, the overall attitude toward the use of marijuana has changed drastically. When studies first showed that marijuana could be a medicinal solution to numerous health issues, many states dropped pot off the illegal list and onto a legal list for medicinal purposes.

Many Americans believe that pot is a great deal less dangerous than alcohol and various studies have backed that claim. During the elections in November, 2012 voters chose to legalize marijuana in Colorado and Washington as a recreational drug. Whether pot is more or less dangerous than alcohol will probably take a great deal more research.

Is Marijuana Safer Than Alcohol?

Recent studies have shown that pot is just as likely to impair judgment and motor skills behind the wheel of a car as alcohol. A study performed at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health has shown an increase in fatal accidents, nationwide, involving the use of marijuana.

Studying auto fatality statistics in California, New Hampshire, Hawaii, Rhode Island, West Virginia and Illinois from 1999 to 2010 showed an increase in accidents involving marijuana. These 6 states were chosen for the study due to their constant toxicology tests given to all drivers involved in fatality accidents. This study examined more than 23,500 deaths that happened within one hour of a collision.

Their research showed that alcohol was a contributor in 40% of fatal accidents and remained the same throughout this time period. With constant ads and education showing the results of drunk driving, there has been little to no effect on those that choose to drink and drive.

Unfortunately, in 1999 16% of fatalities were blamed on drugs and grew to 28% by 2010. Co-author Dr. Guohua Li, "If This Trend Continues" believed in another 5 to 6 years, drugs will overtake alcohol as the leading contributor of death related car accidents.

This particular test does not differentiate between illegal drugs and marijuana or even legal drugs such as painkillers. The tests did show that the most common drug found in the blood streams of drivers was marijuana. In 1999 that number was only 4% and in 2010 reached 12%.

Further Research Is Inevitable:

Alcohol only remains in the blood-stream for a certain number of hours where marijuana can remain for weeks after smoking. Some studies state that 5 nanograms of THC per milliliter of blood weren’t enough to impact drivers. These studies do not indicate that a driver is impaired from pot at the time of the accident; only that pot has been used in the recent past.

THC is the abbreviation for tetrahydrocannabinol. This is the active ingredient in marijuana or "cannabis" which gives narcotic and psychoactive effects to the drug.

On the other hand, advocacy groups such as MADD (Mothers against Drunk Driving) back other studies that believe there is a connection between fatal accidents and the use of marijuana.

Now that more states are considering legalizing marijuana for recreational purposes, more studies will be inevitable. Only time will tell at this point whether the states that have legalized marijuana's, if it is a good or bad choice.

0 Comments | Posted in News Hydroponics Details Indoor Gardening By Charles R. Sword

Tasty Fresh Vegetable Recipes from Your Hydroponic Garden

Everyone loves the taste of fresh vegetables straight from the garden, but unfortunately the summer and fall harvest seasons are much too short. The good news is that you can enjoy the same wonderful flavor year round from a hydroponic garden in your home. With a simple grow box, nutrients, and plant lights you can enjoy vegetables that taste as good as anything you can grow in the soil.

One of the most popular vegetables to grow hydroponically is tomatoes. In North America in the wintertime the tomatoes you can buy at the grocery store are usually imported from Mexico, or are grown in giant commercial greenhouses and shipped. The tomatoes are picked before they are ripe, the texture is tough and the flavor is bland. But if you have a tomato garden in your grow room you can wait to pick them until they are so ripe they are about to burst with flavor.

Basil is an herb that also grows well in hydro. It doesn’t take up much space and grows a pretty little plant that is easy to maintain. It is also a very versatile herb that goes well in Italian dishes such as tomato-basil pasta sauce or on a Caprese salad with mozzarella cheese, fresh sliced tomatoes, and sprinkled with basil.

Another plant that grows really well in your indoor garden is pepper. It is happy to grow in a media like clay pellets where its roots can dig in firmly and hold the plant up straight under the weight of the heavy peppers. Just put the grow light about 8 to 10 inches above the top of the plant so the heat from the lamp doesn’t burn the leaves and raise the light as the plant grows. Give it 10 or 12 hours of light and it is happy.

You can make a wonderful roast pepper dish that is easy to make and tastes delicious. From your garden select 3 fresh peppers, a pint of cherry tomatoes, and a half a cup of basil. Cut the peppers in half and clean out the seeds, then fill the pepper halves with tomatoes and place them in a baking dish. If you have any mozzarella left over from your Caprese salad add a little bit to each pepper. Chop up the basil in a bowl and add 8 chopped garlic cloves, cover the tomatoes with the garlic and basil, then salt and pepper to taste.

Cover the peppers with aluminum foil and put the dish in the oven. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes, then remove the foil and put the dish in to bake for another 15 minutes. Take the peppers from the oven and sprinkle them with about a tablespoon of herb vinegar, then enjoy. This dish is very healthy, with low carbohydrates and full of nutrients.

When you have a hydro grow room you are able to create gourmet meals like this every night. Just grow a selection of your favorite vegetables and herbs, pick up a recipe book, and enjoy fresh-picked veggies on your table all year long.

0 Comments | Posted in News Hydroponics Details Indoor Gardening By Florence B. Harrell

Hydroponics growing gives you the ability to enjoy fresh from the garden produce all year round. When you grow plants in a hydroponics grow room or grow box, you won't have all the hassle of using soil, keeping pests away from the garden, weeding or fertilizing. Everything is done through a system of grow lights and feeding tubes. It's simple, eco-friendly and organic.

Once you've decided to set up your a grow box and plant lights and get down to some hydro growing, you'll have another thing to decide: what to grow! To determine which plants would be best, follow these tips.

Consider your likes

Decide what vegetables you're likely to eat the most of. Planting vegetables that your family does not really enjoy won't give you very many benefits. Pick things that you eat often and that everyone likes.

2. Maximize your space

Instead of planting lots of one type of vegetable in a small grow room, try just one or two plants of all of your favorite veggies. This will help you determine just how much your family can eat in a timely manner. You can always add more later.

3. Think seasonally

If you pay attention to prices in your local grocery store, you'll quickly see that some vegetables are more expensive during the winter months. By growing these in your indoor grow box, you'll save money. For example, tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers are often very pricey in December, January and February, making them better choices than beets or broccoli, which are in season even during the winter.

4. Know what not to plant

Corn, zucchini, summer squash and melons all take up a lot of space in a growing environment, so steer clear of these unless you plan to invest in a very large grow room.

5. Plant the Dirty Dozen

Every year, the Environmental Working Group identifies vegetables and fruits that are likely to be contaminated with pesticides. By planting these in your hydro grow box, you can help to protect your family from toxins. Items on the 2013 list that you can grow indoors include celery, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, hot peppers, potatoes, spinach, sweet bell peppers, kale and collard greens.

6. Try herbs

If you love to cook, devote at least some of your growing environment to an herb garden. Herbs that you pick fresh right before you cook are far more flavorful than dried and even the fresh ones available at the grocery store.

7. Consider availability

If you often cook ethnic foods that require special chilies or other vegetables that are difficult to find in local grocery stores, planting these in your grow room is a wise idea.

Now that you have an idea of what you can grow with your hydroponics system, you're ready to get started. If you still need supplies like grow lights, a grow box or an exhaust fan, you can get those essentials here in our grow shop.

0 Comments | Posted in News Hydroponics Details Indoor Gardening By Charles R. Sword

There is something so wonderful about watching little seeds turn into sprouts from an indoor container. Many gardeners are skeptical when talking about growing seedlings or just about any outdoor plant indoors. Little do they know, this is a great way to start plants off in a strong and healthy way while having a great deal of fun. Starting seeds from indoors is actually quite easy and fills those winter month voids with sprouts appearing before your very eyes.

Why Start Seeds Indoors?

One, it'll give you a jump on spring planting and it's a great way to get through the doldrums of winter. Seeds are a great way to start plants that can be quite difficult to find as a full plant at your local nursery. Starting from seeds vs a grown plant will save you a great deal of cash as well because you will get great deal more for your money. A packet of seeds will have at least a dozen seeds and only cost a few bucks. One full plant will cost more than that packet of seeds. Again, buying a packet of seeds and starting them indoors will be a rewarding experience during the cold winter months.

Can I Choose Any Seeds I Wish and Get Great Results?

If you are a seasoned gardener who has worked with seeds, yes. If you are new to seed starting, it's a good idea to start with those that are easier to grow. Tomatoes, Basil, Peppers, Marigold, Zinnias and Cosmos are really easy to grow and germinate very quickly. Once you have mastered some of these easier varieties, go ahead and try some of your favorites that are little more on the fussy side.

What Type of Soil Works Best for Seeds?

A light weight mix formula created for seeds is your best bet. Garden soil and other soils are too heavy and will not drain as well. Garden soils also carry organisms that can kill or damage your seedlings.

Are There Specific Pots I Should Use?

Containers with excellent drainage holes and designed for seeds such as trays and/or pots are the best choices. Some people like using biodegradable pots such as Paper Pots, Cowpots or Reusable Trays. You may also purchase self watering systems that are literally foolproof.

How Deep Should The Seeds Be Placed?

Your seed packet will give you needed information including the depth of the seeds. You must be careful not to plant seeds too deep. Plants have a very limited amount of food stored for nourishing the seeds. If the seeds are planted too deeply, they will run out of food before they ever reach the surface. Each packet has very concise and clear planting instructions that should be followed.

A Windowsill vs a Grow Light:

Although you are welcome to place your seedlings on a sunny windowsill, it's advisable to use a grow light. First, seedlings will develop more quickly with a light vs your sunny window. Secondly, the light coming through the window is not as intense as the summer sun, so they might not receive the desired light for good growth. Plants grown under a grow light will be larger and stockier and therefore adapted better once transplanted outdoors. If you use a grow light, make sure the light is a few inches above the seedlings' tops. As the sprouts start getting higher, adjust the light's height.

Should Grow Lights Remain On All Day and Night?

Seedlings will grow better if they have the grow light kept on for 14 to 16 hours a day. They do need some hours of darkness in order to rest, so you might want to purchase a timer for the lights.

Should They Be Watered From the Bottom or the Top?

As a general rule, you should water from the bottom so the surface soil remains dryer. If surface soil becomes really wet you could run into disease issues. If you have small seeds or those requiring surface sown, use a mist to keep the surface moist for germination.

When Should I Remove a Greenhouse Cover?

Greenhouse covers are great for holding in moisture and humidity for a faster germination. At the first sign of sprout growth, remove the cover. This gives the sprouts air circulation and keeps them away from various diseases.

Should Seedlings Be Thinned Out?

Once they start growing, they might start crowding each other out. That's the time to start thinning the seeds. You need to choose the strongest ones to stay and remove the weaker ones. Some gardeners choose to remove the weaker ones and replant them. Roots can become damaged but if you want to give it a try go ahead. If you choose to just thin out the plants, snip off the seedlings, that are being removed, at the soil line.

When To Fertilize:

When the seeds' food storage structure starts appearing, they look like leaves but aren't. When the second sets of real leaves start developing. These are the times to start your fertilization.

When Should Plants Be Placed In Larger Pots:

Some of your larger, fast growing seedlings will need to be moved to larger pots before it's time for them to go outdoors. Tomatoes are a good example, so when they get around four inches tall, gently remove them from their smaller pots.

When Should Plants Be Moved Outdoors?

Depending on the climate you live in and when the last frost arrives in the spring will dictate when you should move your plants outdoors. Seed packets should offer planting suggestions regarding their sowing requirements.

You should also consider whether your plants like cool or warm growing conditions. If the packet doesn't give you enough information, there are reference books that address all plants and their ideal environment.

I Don't Know The Last Frost Date, What Should I Do?

If you have moved from a different part of the country or are new to gardening, others will help you out. Ask a friend, a neighbor or contact the local gardening center, these people will be glad to help you out.

How Will My Plants Inoculate To Outdoor An Environment?

The process is called "hardening off", it simply helps the plants to become used to outdoor conditions. Outdoor conditions are harsher than the soft life they have experience indoors. Approximately one week before planting your seedlings into the garden, place them in a protected area outdoors for a few hours a day and bring them in a night. The protected area should be partial shade and out of the wind. Gradually expose them to more sunshine and wind, leaving them outside but moving them around, for approximately one week to ten days.

Problems Along The Way:

Poor germination can be a problem with some plants. Usually this is caused by seedlings that take a little longer to germinate. The packets should have the germination period and growth rate for that specific plant. Some seeds will take two or more weeks to start sprouting.

Poor germination may also occur from too wet or too cold soil which will cause them to rot. Sometimes the soil is too dry and the seeds are not capable of absorbing the moisture needed to sprout. Their roots are very fragile and this will cause them to die before any shoots can emerge. Seeds that are not properly stored or are too old will also not germinate.

Soil borne fungi will attack stems, causing the plants to fall over.You will have to start over by cleaning the containers and sterilizing the mixture. The soil should dry out or be mostly dried out before applying water. Make sure their is good air circulation such as a fan if needed. In order to clean and disinfect used containers, use a solution of 10% bleach and 90% water.

If you notice white fuzzy growth or green slimy parts on the surface of your mix or the outside of your biodegradable pots, it's more than likely mold or algae. This is a sign that the mix is way too wet. Although the seedling will probably be fine, you need to get that mix partially dried out. Again, use a fan or other options to bring about good air circulation.

Leggy plants are not getting enough light. Place them under a grow light with the light only a few inches above the plants. Keep the lights on for 14 to 16 hrs a day. If your room temperatures are too warm, this cause leggy problems as well. Over crowding and poor fertilization will cause weak and pale plants.

Pale leaves that are green, yellow or purple are probably a sign of poor nutrients. Once the seedlings are approximately one to two inches in height, start feeding them fertilizer. Use a water-soluble fertilizer that is diluted to half strength for a few weeks. Then start applying full strength each week. Always follow the directions on the labels.

0 Comments | Posted in News Hydroponics Details Indoor Gardening By Charles R. Sword

Sage (Salvia Officinalis) is an attractive plant that grows between 2 and 3 feet and is a member of the mint family. Used as an herb to enhance many dishes as well as an beautiful ornamental plant for gardens. It is a hardy perennial commonly used to season poultry.

Sage is an ancient herb used for medicinal purposes from wounds to broken bones. It was also believed to help relieve stomach disorders and helped one's memory. The Greeks used sage to treat ulcers, snake bites and consumption. To the Romans, sage was considered sacred including a ceremony in honor of it. They would gather sage dressed in clean robes and make a food sacrifice. It is also believed they used sage as a form of toothpaste.

Unlike other herbs, Sage seeds do not germinate well and can take as long as two years to reach maturity when grown traditionally. Sage cuttings are a more popular alternative for growing.


Sow approximately six to eight weeks before the last frost.Planted in soil, seeds will take about 3 weeks to germinate. Using a hydroponic system, proper light, and in a controlled environment germination, time can possibly be cut in half.

Planting sprouts in a hydroponic system with a nutrient solution will give you a better growth rate and healthier stock. As sage loves high sun, a fluorescent light should be placed approximately 2 inches above the sprout growth. As the plants grow, raise the light. You may also use a windowsill if it offers bright sunlight. Keep your water level high enough for the roots to reach at all times. Hydroponic systems water your herb garden with a rich nutrient solution that will promote a healthier and faster growth than outdoor gardening can possibly do. You will experience less diseases and a lack of outdoor insect infestations.

Hydroponic Solutions:

There are many wonderful ways to grow your herb garden with hydroponics. Visit your local gardening shop that offers hydro growing. Many gardeners like to use either a partially enclosed grow box or a completely enclosed grow box system. These boxes are ideal for those winter months when outdoors is a complete impossibility. Growers are thrilled with having fresh herbs and vegetables in the dead of winter.

With a partially enclosed or completely enclosed grow box, the world is open to a huge selection of plants and herbs to enjoy year round. Your only limitation for a grow box is your available space, as they range from small to large containers. Some of the tremendous features include a large variety of lighting options such as grow lights to ventilation systems.

Grow Boxes:

Partially enclosed boxes will require grow lights that are placed appropriately above in order to grow plants. Grow lights come in a variety of bulbs from fluorescent to more energy efficient lighting such as LEDs (light emitting diodes).

Many completely enclosed grow boxes come with added features including built-in grow lights and fan ventilation systems for air circulation to prevent the onslaught of various molds and fungi.

Grow Rooms:

Grow rooms offer a controlled environment for your plants. In order to grow plants in one of these rooms depends on your available space as they come in a good array of sizes. You should acquire a good ventilation system, such as a fan, because these rooms can become extremely hot and air circulation will be extremely important to keep temperatures down.

With the growing popularity in hydroponic systems, there has never been a better time for indoor gardeners. The sky truly is the limit from herbs to fresh vegetables and even exotic flowers. New systems, products and techniques are constantly on the horizon and gardeners are ready to jump on it.


Cut the leaves sparingly in the first year of growth and prepare to dry. Tie the cuttings into small bunches and hang upside down in a dark, well ventilated room. Once dried, remove the leaves from the stems and store whole.

Disease & Insects:

In an outdoor environment various diseases are carried by insects or are often found within the soil. Spider mites and slugs are the two biggest problems for sage. Use a natural insect controller to combat these pests. Hydro growing will help prevent this from taking place because of the nutrient solution vs soil.

In an indoor hydroponic system, regulate the nutrients and watch the temperature. Keep air circulated with a fan to keep the possibility of insects and diseases developing. Using a sandy soil will promote good drainage which will keep diseases down as well. A good insecticide soap or natural insect controller are in order should you find problems developing.

Collecting Seeds:

Once the blooms start turning brown and the heads are totally dry, gently crush them between your hands and carefully fan away the bracts.


Growing sage indoors allows you to enjoy these wonderful herbs year round and especially during the winter months when all else is barren. Sage has a wonderful aroma and delightful flavor. Pull out those dusty old recipes that call for sage and prepare delightful dishes!

0 Comments | Posted in News Hydroponics Details Indoor Gardening By Florence B. Harrell

Pickling foods for abundance during the fall and winter months is nothing new. Your great-grandmother, your grandmother and possibly your mother were doing this long before you were around.

Some very popular pickled foods are: cucumbers, carrots, beets and peppers. Canning these foods is actually a lot easier than you might think, it just takes a little simple instruction.

The History of The Pickle:

Pickles go back as far as 2400 BC during the time of the Mesopotamians. Pickling is a preserving process and therefore were necessary throughout the centuries before refrigeration came into existence. The British were big believers in pickles since the Middle Ages and still are today.

Did you know Julius Caesar gave pickles to his troops because he believed these little pickles offered physical and spiritual strength.

Aristotle believed pickles offered great healing properties.

The benefits of pickling your vegetables is the fermenting process. This process increases good bacteria that promotes a healthy immune systems and bodily functions.

Let's Pickle:

Peel, slice (1" thick) 3 pounds of cucumbers

Place your cucumbers into canning jars.

Each jar should consist of:

  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seeds
  • 1 to 3 dried chili peppers
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon dill
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon pickling spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric

Place In A Sauce Pan:

3 cups of white vinegar + 3 cups of water + 2 tablespoons of Sea Salt + 2 tablespoons of organic coconut sap or sugar. Bring the mixture to a boil for approximately two minutes or until the sea salt has totally dissolved.

The Jar:

Fill the jars with this mixture short of 1/4 inch at the top.

Put the lids on the jars and then seal and secure the them. Refrigerate for 48 hours or longer and enjoy!

About The Mighty Pickle:

Although pickles only have 16 calories, the sodium is 1,181 mg or 49% of your daily intake. That's a great deal of sodium!

Americans consume over 8.5 million pounds of pickles each year and twice that amount for dill and sweet pickles.

In 1500's NYC hosted the largest group of Dutch commercial picklers!

It is believed pickles will last 2 years which is past the expiration date on the jar.

A Crunchy Moment:

People love pickles! We enjoy them with hamburgers, at any form of barbecue, as a snack at any given time and are forever popular in homes across the country. NY Delis believe they created and perfected the giant pickle, which is always sitting on the counter top in a huge jar! With their own special herbs and spices, Deli customers would never dream of leaving the establishment without at least one huge pickle in tow!

Whether you would enjoy pickling cucumbers for the almighty pickle or enjoy other vegetables, pickling is a history old culinary delight! Try various pickling techniques and what vegetables appeal to you the most. Pickled foods are lasting and a great way to enjoy your summer vegetables in the dead of winter.

0 Comments | Posted in News Hydroponics Details Indoor Gardening By Charles R. Sword

Hydrogen peroxide (H202) has been used for years in treating minor cuts and burns within households. It gets rid of infections and various bacteria without any discomfort. Hydrogen peroxide also prevents future infections in your hydroponic system, protecting your ability to grow plants in many positive ways.

Using hydrogen peroxide in your Hydroponics System offers many good outcomes. If your nutrient reservoir solution maintains 72 degrees, hydrogen peroxide is a necessary ingredient. Warm water decreases the oxygen level in the water causing many bacteria, viruses and fungi. Hydrogen peroxide adds oxygen and cleans the water of these pathogens. Your herb garden and other hydro gardens will love you for it!

Grow lights can cause a temperature increase in your grow rooms or grow boxes. Hydrogen peroxide will help bring the water temperature down and protect your plants. Plant lights are commonly used in partially enclosed grow boxes and completely enclosed grow boxes. Watching your temperatures is extremely important to insure you grow plants with great success.

Hydrogen peroxide counteracts the chlorine that many water providers use to sterilize your drinking water. Well water is high in methane and organic sulfates which hydrogen peroxide will also remove. As you draw your water from one of these sources, the purity of water in your will have a strong effect on your herb garden, vegetable garden or flower garden.

Bacterial, fusarium fungi, pythium fungi and many other organisms are destroyed by free oxygen released by hydrogen peroxide. Many herbs are effected by various fungi and mildew, using a little precaution and providing hydrogen peroxide to eliminate the potential of these diseases is important.

Plants must have oxygen as it is a major part of a plant's structure, allowing nutrients for the plants to feed on and assists in critical functions for all metabolic processes.

When using a grow room, keep in mind these rooms can become extremely hot. Good ventilation and oxygen are critical to proper growth. When applying hydrogen peroxide, follow label instructions carefully and other instructions included with your hydroponic system.

Extra oxygen provided by hydrogen peroxide benefits many functions including:

  • Breaks down carbohydrates brought on by photosynthesis
  • Gets more nutrients to your plant by increasing root zone movement
  • Creates thicker stems
  • Aids oxidization of metallic elements
  • Provides plant energy
  • It enhances photosynthesis by stimulating the level of protein production
  • Boosts the survival rate of plant cuttings
  • Escalates seed germination
  • Disinfects and cleanses your hydroponic system providing less disease
  • Excelling seed germination will greatly help seeds in sprouting while protecting them from molds and mildews.

Wet Sprouting:

Once a day, place a wet paper towel or cloth onto a flat surface and spray the outer surface of the material encasing the seeds. Supplement watering with a 3% solution once the sprouts start growing. Should you notice any form of bacterial growth, spray a 3% solution of hydrogen peroxide onto the foliage, blooms and barks.

Regular strengths of hydroponic peroxide (3%, 5%, 8%) are safe and very easy to use. Look for "hydrogen peroxide (stabilized) 3% on the label.

Three percent hydrogen peroxide should be in a solution of 2-1/2 teaspoons of peroxide per gallon. You should start off at a lower concentration and then increase after a few weeks.

Changing Out The Reservoir:

When changing the reservoir, every two or three weeks, start off with 1 teaspoon of hydrogen peroxide per gallon and slowly increase to the full 2-1/2 teaspoons per gallon.

Allow your hydroponic system to fully circulate the peroxide and water solution for approximately 30 minutes. This allows the peroxide to rid of pathogens and allows the solution to stabilized before you add the nutrients.

Take The Advise of a Professional:

Your standard peroxide can be purchased in most drugstores and many times at your local supermarket. You may also purchase a hydrogen peroxide solution from your hydroponics retailer. You should also consult with them for any professional advise regarding the solution strengths and when it should be applied. Take their advise and follow the instructions that are clearly listed on the bottle. Your hydro grow shop professionals are just a phone call away should you have any questions or concerns.

We have used hydrogen peroxide for healing minor wounds and killing off diseases. Now you know it will serve the same purpose for your hydroponic herb and vegetable gardens!

0 Comments | Posted in News Hydroponics Details Indoor Gardening By Florence B. Harrell

If you want to grow plants indoors simply and easy, there are two methods of growing that do not require the hassle and mess of dealing with soil. The first is hydroponics, which involves the use of a growing medium. The second is a specialized form of hydroponics called aeroponics. With aeroponics, plants are grown under grow lights in a groom room or box like hydroponics, but there is no growing medium used at all.

So which type is right for you if you want to plant an herb garden or grow vegetables indoors? Read on to learn more about the advantages and disadvantages of both forms of indoor growing.

Growing Medium Differences

In a grow box or room for a hydroponics system, you won't need any dirt. Instead, you'll use a medium like the fibers from coconut shells, perlite or pebbles made of clay. Plants are fed nutrients through a system of tubes to help them grow. In an aeroponics growing environment, you will not use the medium. Instead, you'll need to turn off the plant lights periodically and spray the roots of your plants with a nutrient solution.

Advantages of Hydro Growing

Some of the advantages of hydroponics growing include:

- Large degree of control over the nutrients your plants receive

- Less water wasted as systems recycle the water. A high quality system can use 90 percent less water than traditional methods used to grow plants indoors

- No pesticides or herbicides are required

- Plants can be grown in every season since grow lights are used in place of natural sunlight.

- Less expensive to maintain than a traditional garden

Disadvantages of Hydro Growing

Although there are many distinct advantages of using a hydroponics system in your grow room or box, there are some disadvantage as well:

- Water based diseases can be easily transmitted through hydroponic systems due to the recycling of water

- The plant lights consume energy, and there is a need to have back-up generators in place in case of power failure

- There is a high initial expense for setting up a grow box or room

Advantages of Aeroponics

Aeroponics growing offers many of the same advantages as hydroponics; however, it does have one distinct advantage over hydro growing methods. Since there is no growing medium, plants are able to absorb more nutrients, which can lead to lusher growth and bigger harvests.

Disadvantages of Aeroponics

Like hydroponic growing, aeroponics is expensive to set up and requires electricity. In addition, an aero system requires more maintenance, as you will need to consistently monitor the pH of the plants and the amount of nutrients your plants are receiving. Generally, aeroponics systems are more difficult to use than a hydro growing environment, so the growing method is less ideal for beginners.

Whether you're interested in hydroponics or aeroponics, the iHidro grow shop has all of the supplies that you need to grow plants indoors. Check out our selection of products and get on your way to that indoor herb garden or vegetable garden.

0 Comments | Posted in Hydroponics Details Indoor Gardening By Florence B. Harrell

Lovage (Levisticum officinale) is an herbaceous, perennial plant. Native of the Mediterranean region, lovage grows wild in the mountainous districts in the south of France, in northern Greece and in the Balkans. Growing tall, the stems and leaves are a shiny green, has a hint of celery flavor and also a smell of lime when the herb is crushed. Cultivated as a sweet herb, with its roots used for medicinal purposes, its leaves can be used in salads, or to make soup of broths. The bottom of the stems can be blanched and eaten the same as celery.

This article will explain how to correctly sow lovage by means of soil propagation and hydroponically.

Growing Lovage in Soil:


Traditionally, out in the garden, the hardy lovage herb prefers rich, damp soil and a shady site. Before planting, it is important to consider how much space a gardener would devote to growing this herb. Lovage can grow very tall, with adult plants reaching 4-6 feet high. One large lovage plant is enough to keep a family sufficiently supplied with its fragrant leaves throughout the year while many plants create the perfect backdrop for a garden in the ground or set in planter pots.


Lovage grows well from seed. Start indoors 6-8 weeks before planting out at a depth of 2.5 cms in small peat pots. Seeds require on average 10-20 days for germination. Transplant after the danger of frost has passed. It is advised to transplant the seedlings again in autumn or spring to positions 2 feet (60 cms) apart. By the time the seedlings are four years old; they will have most likely reached their full size and should be spaced about 4 feet (1.2 m) apart.


Lovage may be harvested after the first growing season if the plant is growing healthily. If very large, aromatic leaves are desired for flavoring, the plants must be watered especially well throughout the course of its life. If the lovage plant has enough water, plentiful cuttings can be taken from the plant a few times a year. As with most culinary herbs, the best time to do cuttings are in the morning after the morning dew has dried. Best used fresh, lovage can, however, be stored frozen in plastic bags or even dried. If only the leaves of the plant are desired, then the plant should be kept from flowering and seeding.

Lovage can successfully be dried in a cool oven, at a temperature of a little less than 200ºF (94ºC with the door left a little ajar). It is important to check the leaves often to prevent burning. Lovage can also be dried by tying cuttings in small bunches and hanging them upside down in a well-ventilated, dark room.

Lovage has also been noted as having a high amount of quercetin, a plant flavanoid said to have strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. The plant has been used medicinally for generations as it can relieve abdominal pains due to gastrointestinal gas. When consumed as a tea, lovage is also said to decrease flatulence.

Insects and Disease:

Lovage, like many leafy vegetables and herbs, is sometimes the target of leaf mining insects such as burrowing worms. Unfortunately, control of these leaf miners, even with pesticides, isn't very effective. The only thing that can be done is manually pick the affected leaves as soon as they are spotted. If the problem becomes widespread, then a cover over the crop is a good option in order to limit the flying leaf miners from leaving its eggs inside the lovage leaves.

Seed Saving Instructions:

The plant produces huge flower heads of seed. To properly dry for storage, allow the flower heads to dry on the plant. Once dried, collect the seeds and store in a cool dark place. Seed heads may also be bagged to capture ripening seed. Dry seed head can be brittle, so collect over a bowl, basket, bag or other container to collect all seeds.

Growing Lovage Hydroponically

Hydroponics and Growing Lovage

Hydroponics is a method of growing plants, like vegetables and herbs, without the use of any kind of soil. All the nutrients a plant needs while growing primarily in water are provided from a water-based nutrient solution. Anchors such as rockwool, pumice, sand or perlite are desired, so that the seedling can keep itself anchored.

The advantage of hydroponics over conventionally planning in soil is that when gardening with this method, plants can be placed close together. This in turn increases the yield in the space being used. There are also no weeds in hydroponics and normally no pests. Hydroponics, however, does more often than not cost more for the needed equipment as well as taking a little more training to learn the process as compared to the standard soil gardening technique.

Lovage can be grown hydroponically and has been noted to grow much more quickly in water than in soil. To grow lovage in this way, large amounts of equipment needn't be purchased as a small DIY hydroponic garden can easily be set up with reusable materials. This method of hydroponics is called hydroponic organics, and is currently one of the most popular methods of hydroponic growing. It allows the gardener, no matter the level of expertise, the freedom and flexibility of choosing their plant’s container, organic solution, and fertilizer (if desired) as they water the plants directly without the use of an automatic water on a timer. Hydroponics, although having the image of being a complex operation is in fact a moderately simple and inexpensive process when done on a small scale.

DIY Hydroponic Organics

  • One 2-liter soda bottle, emptied and cleaned
  • A pair of scissors
  • Heavy tape (duct tape is a good choice)
  • A Styrofoam cup
  • A pencil or screwdriver
  • Perlite
  • A lovage seedling with the soil gently cleaned from its roots
  • Hydroponic nutrient solution


  1. Cut the top from the soda bottle. The hole should be large enough to hold the styrofoam cup. Make the cut level so that the Styrofoam cup will sit evenly in the hole.
  2. Cover the cut top of the bottle with the heavy tape. This is to keep both the styrofoam cup in place while hiding sharp edges of the plastic bottle.
  3. Using the pencil or screwdriver, poke several holes into the bottom of the cup. The holes should be large enough that the roots of the lovage plant will have a way grow through to reach the water, while the pieces of perlite do not fall through.
  4. If the seedling was started in soil, wash the roots gently before planting the seedling in the perlite. Make sure that there is no soil on the roots of the seedling. With clean roots, plant the lovage seedling into the perlite. Put enough perlite in the cup to fill it almost to the top.
  5. Follow the instructions written on the label of the hydroponic nutrient solution. Carefully mix enough hydroponic nutrient solution to fill the 2 liter bottle that the cup now sits in. Fill the bottle with enough of solution mixture so that the mixture is touching the lowering roots of the seedling within the cup. Ensure the solution does not cover all of the roots of the plant because the seedling’s roots also need access to oxygen in order to grow.
  6. Preferably, lovage does well with a relative humidity and at least six hours per day of light. This is the optimum conditions for the seedling to grow. If this cannot be adequately supplied to the seedling by natural means, grow lights and timers are also available from grow shops. These allow direct control over the amount of light the plant receives.

0 Comments | Posted in News Hydroponics Details Indoor Gardening By Charles R. Sword

If you've decided to try hydroponics gardening to grow plants indoors, you may be uncertain exactly how to begin, but don't worry, you're not alone. Many of the questions that we get at our grow shop are from new gardeners who need a little help getting started. To help get your vegetable or herb garden underway, just follow these simple steps.

1. Make sure you have all of the essential components for your hydroponics environment. You'll need grow lights and a ballast, a grow room or grow box and a hydroponics system with water filters.

2. Decide what you're going to grow! If you're not sure what to place in your hydro grow environment, check out our earlier blog post on selecting vegetables and plants for hydroponic gardening. You'll also need to decide if you intend to buy starter plants or germinate seeds. If you're going to start with seeds, continue on. For plants, skip to step 11.

3. To get your seeds started, add 1 quart of water to a large container. Be careful not to make it too hot or too cold.

4. Check the pH level of the water with a tester. You want the pH to between 5.5 and 6.5. You can use water treatment products to alter the pH, but a simple, organic way is to add drops of lemon juice gradually. If you end up with a pH below 5, add a little more water in until you're in the perfect range.

5. Soak rock wool cubes in the water for at least 1 hour. Make sure that you wear protection over your face like a surgical mask to protect your lungs from the small fibers in the cubes.

6. Shake the cubes off when you take them out of the water. Wringing them will damage them.

7. Place the seeds inside the cubes. Typically, you should put just one or two seeds for vegetables in each cube. For an herb garden, 7 to 8 seeds can be placed in each cube.

8. Use a plastic planter tray to hold the cubes. Cover with a lid and let them stay in an environment that is 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Do not use plant lights.

9. Each day check on your seeds and give them a spritz with water.

10. Once your plants are at least 2 inches tall and have at least 3 leaves, they are ready for transplanting.

11. Set up your grow room or grow box with your growing lights, the nutrients delivery system and the other components. Follow the instructions provided with your growing environment.

12. Place your seedlings or plants in perlite in growing pots.

13. Fill the hydroponics system with the liquid for nutrition, according to the directions.

14.Congratulate yourself! You're on your way to organic, hydro gardening indoors!

You can purchase many of the growing supplies that you need for your hydroponics herb garden or vegetable garden right here at the iHidroUSA grow shop.

0 Comments | Posted in News Hydroponics Details Indoor Gardening By Charles R. Sword

Edible flowers are wonderful garnishments for so many different dishes for that creative touch as well as an interesting flavor for your salads.Five star chefs love working with edible flowers for their own creative touch to some of their finest dishes. Due to their profusion of beautiful colors and shapes, your garden will be magnificent! Edible flowers also attract the wonderful world of bees, pollinating and promoting your garden's rejuvenation.

Although many gardeners only use them for decoration purposes, you would be quite surprised how tasty they can be. Nasturtiums offers a wonderful spicy or peppery flavor while repelling aphids and other garden pests as well. Their heavy vines literally kill underlying weeds, saving you some serious weeding time.

Always grow edible flowers organically because other soils and treatments can produce insects, insecticides or pesticides.

Growing Edible Flowers with a Hydroponic System:

Getting out of the garden and moving indoors for the best, organic solution for growing these edible flowers is not only a great deal of fun, but a healthy alternative.

Hydroponics do not use soil, but instead a nutrient solution that helps grow plants more quickly and produces a healthier plant. Herb gardens will fit nicely in your home, taking up very little room and offering a wonderful nutritional outcome. You place your plants in a grow box which can be either a partially enclosed system or completely enclosed system. These boxes are ideal for growing your plants during the winter months and will protect them diseases and pests while growing them in the summer months.

Grow Boxes:

A completely enclosed grow box is an excellent choice because it comes with so many features. There is a built in grow light enhancing advanced and healthy growth. You will also have a fan system for excellent ventilation for circulation of air and preventing any fungi or mold development.


The hydroponic systems water your plants with a rich nutrient solution that many growers find far above growing in soil. Some of the advanced features include their own air conditioning to prevent temperatures from increasing as well.

Grow Lights:

Grow lights are fluorescent bulbs that offer a certain amount of light for plant development. Other plant lights can be hung approximately 2" above the height of the plants in a partially enclosed grow box and should be lifted as the plants continue to grow. There are other bulb options for grow lights that are slightly more energy efficient than fluorescent bulbs.

LEDs (light emitting diodes)
High intensity lamps
Sodium vapor lamps

Grow Rooms:

Grow Rooms can be just about any size where plants are in a controlled environment. You may choose from a variety of sizes, depending on your space availability.There are many reasons why gardeners prefer to use grow rooms. In many cases, there are no other alternatives for growing various plants then indoors due to outdoor elements. As plants do very well growing with plant lights, these rooms are perfect. Keep in mind, these rooms can become quite hot, due to these lights, and therefore it is highly recommended you acquire a ventilation system such as a fan.

In order to purchase the right hydro system for your needs, you should visit your local hydroponics grow shop. If you don't have someone local who deals in hydroponic systems, you will find what you need online. You can ask questions, receive great advice and purchase all your needs in one place!

Edibles and Non-Edibles:

There are literally dozens of edible flowers to choose from, if you have never grown this variety of flower always check with professionals for what is truly edible or what could possible make you extremely ill, even causing death. Therefore it is extremely important that you know the differences.

When Serving To Others:

Also, keep in mind, just like other foods we consume, some people do not react well to these flowers or they might have an allergic reaction toward them. If you or a friend have never consumed an edible flower, it is strongly suggested to try only a tiny piece and then wait for an hour or so to see if there are any negative reactions.

Never feed these flowers to your family or friends unless you know they are Ok with it. Again, check first to make sure they won't have an adverse reaction from consuming them.

There are so many edible flowers for you to choose from and grow. Whether you are purchasing to enhance your herb garden's appearance, or to just add an accent to your favorite dishes, always check with experts before purchasing. This is for you and your family's well being as well as your friends.

So Many Varieties and Flavors:

The beautiful blue star shaped Borage blossom is a wonderful choice if you like the taste of cucumbers. They work really well in salads or as a pretty added touch to your tropical party drinks.

Try chive blossoms with your grilled fish or other favorite summer grilled dishes. How about adding a very small amount of lavender blossoms to that homemade ice cream! Just don't go overboard because lavender can be extremely potent.

For Decoration:

Even if you are not quite sold on eating flowers, you will want to include them in your herb garden designs. They are absolutely exquisite to see, adding awe to your garden. Use a little creativity when planning your hydroponic garden and include these flowers, you will not be disappointed.

0 Comments | Posted in News Hydroponics Details By Charles R. Sword

Hydrogardening has become extremely popular over the past decade due to the ability of growing healthy, nourishing produce indoors. With so many products being treated with pesticides and chemicals, more people are looking for better ways to incorporate their favorite vegetables and herbs into their diets. Hydroponic gardening is the best alternative for those wanting a better produce on their table.

What Is A Hydrogarden?

A hydrogarden is a method of gardening using hydroponics. Hydroponics is a subdivision of hydroculture and method of growing plants in water instead of soil and administering a mineral nutrient solution. Hydroponics is Greek for: hydro (water) + ponos (labor).

In the 18th century, researchers discovered that plants absorb mineral nutrients in both water and soil. Soil performs as a mineral nutrient reservoir but is not an indispensable element for growing plants. It was discovered that when mineral nutrients were dissolved in water, roots were able to absorb them without soil.

It is believed that the Gardens of Babylon was one of the first hydroponic gardening techniques in the world.

Through the use of hydroponics, roots have shown faster growth and plants are developing a greater yield. It is no wonder that gardeners, both experienced and beginners, are getting more involved in hydrogardening. The labor gardeners are putting into hydrogardening is a great deal less than they experienced with outdoor gardening. They have also discovered their produce is much more flavorful with both fruits and vegetables and freshness exemplory.

Hydroponic Gardening and the Environment:

Hydroponic gardening does not use harmful pesticides or chemicals and is very environmentally friendly. Hydroponic gardening uses a great deal less water than standard outdoor gardening and you never have to worry about weeds because there is no soil involved. One major plus to hydroponic gardening is your being able to enjoy your favorite fruits and vegetables year round. There are no limitations for producing these wonderful foods in the dead of winter because everything is grown indoors within a controlled environment.

For those gourmet chefs, you will have fresh, flavorful herbs at your finger tips for those exquisite recipes for family and friends.

Say Goodbye To Tasteless Produce:

As you probably know, by the time produce are grown and shipped to your local store, most of the nutritional values and flavors are gone. Freshness is a word totally remote for what you are paying and you are paying for them, high-end!

Gardeners have known for a very long time that the foods they have grown in the gardens are far superior to foods presented at their local supermarket. With hydroponic gardens, they are discovering even higher levels of freshness and flavor. By growing hydroponic gardens, you are serving up foods that are healthier to your body with the total lack of toxins.

Going Green:

Over the past decade everyone has been talking about "going green". In many cases, everyone associates this term with recycling or buying products that have little to no added chemical processing additives. Whether it's a hand lotion, facial cream or fast foods.

Growing vegetable gardens, fruits or herb gardens is also going green. Hydroponics deals with no soil which incorporate fertilizers and dangerous chemicals. These elements are also very harmful to plants and water, causing environmental problems. Plants grown hydroponically are healthier, stronger and offer a much better yield. Hydroponic gardens are very easy to start and produce great results as well as being highly cost efficient.

What Is Urban Gardening?

If you have lived in or visited a large city, you have probably seen gardens being grown of the tops of buildings. Urban gardening is developing a garden and growing plants where actual land and soil are not available. Urban gardening also refers to plants that are grown on windowsills across the country.

Most city dwellers live in apartments or town homes and do not have access to a great deal of space to grow gardens. Hydroponics has turned that completely around and made it possible for these folks to grown their own fruits, vegetables, herbs or flowers within their own small spaces.

Large cities, including New York City, have started incorporating hydrogardening within the city for communities. This has proven to be a great way for people to come together and grow wonderful gardens within their own neighborhoods. Not only is this great for individual growers, but has helped create foods for those less fortunate who are in need of healthy foods for their families as well.

Going Organic But With A Price:

Over the years, many people are skeptical about produce in their local stores because of chemical hazards. Their only alternative has been to hunt down places that only grow organic foods. The downside is these foods can be much more expensive and if you do not know the farmer, are they really organic?

Being your own gardener will alleviate your concerns about the quality of produce you are placing on your table. Setting up your own hydrogardens, you know exactly the quality you are getting.

Learning and Sharing The Wealth:

There are many other upsides to growing hydroponic gardens including forming new friendships around your neighborhood, learning and teaching the values of hydroponic plants to your children, discovering a great long lasting hobby and sharing the abundance of your harvest.

A Neighbor In Need:

You might have a neighbor who just can't afford the high cost of produce but would definitely benefit from the gift of a hydrogarden. You can teach them the benefits and show them how to get started and let them know you are available with any questions or problems they might run into, when starting off.

Your neighbor might be elderly and weeding, dealing with soil and the overall hard work of an outdoor garden is out of the question. A hydrogarden is the perfect solution for them to enjoy fresh produce year round and be able to do it themselves.

Teach Your Children Well:

Kids are like sponges, they absorb information and new ideas faster than anyone else. Introducing a hydrogarden into their lives is a great way to teach them the importance of nature, having a healthy environment and how to eat healthy foods that they have grown themselves.

These kids could take the newly found knowledge and bring them into their classrooms as a class project or just to share with other classmates and their teachers.

Your Church and Community:

Educating your church members and pastors to the advantages of creating and growing hydroponic gardens could help out those less fortunate. Churches are always setting up food drives, canned goods, etc. What if they started growing their own fruits and vegetables to help out those with very little? Members of the church coming together and sharing their own skills specific skills is very positive. Some of these members might be quite knowledgeable in gardening and offer valuable suggestions. This is working together to make great things happen in a very positive way.

Summing It Up:

Hydroponic gardens have more benefits than can possibly be imagined. You are not using soil, so there's no need for pesticides and other dangerous chemicals. You are using less water because the water recycles. Plants grow healthier and offer a much higher yield than any other form of gardening. You will enjoy fresh, nutritional and tasty foods throughout the entire year.

On top of all the healthy reasons to start a hydroponic garden, there are many other positives springing up everywhere. These gardens can bring communities together by sharing ideas and offering assistance to those who want to learn. Family and friends will discover a whole new insight into "Going Green" and along the way, you can reach out and help others less fortunate than yourself. The gift of food, a hydroponic garden and teaching children to understand and respect the world around them is pretty powerful!
Hydroponic gardens have been around for centuries but only in the past couple of decades has the concept spread throughout the entire world. Gardeners growing healthy produce on their roof tops or in a spare room are catching on every day. Senior adults are able to grow their favorite produce easily and with little effort. Hydroponics is proving to be an important part of protecting and caring for our environment and without doubt is here to stay.

0 Comments | Posted in Hydroponics Details Indoor Gardening By Florence B. Harrell

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