Best Plants To Grow With Hydroponics

Hydroponics is a great way to grow plants while using only water, air, and a small number of nutrients. As a result, these plants often grow faster and yield more fruit or vegetables than those produced using the traditional soil method. 

If you are smitten with the no soil, no waste concept of these hydroponics plants and have already set up a hydroponics system but are unsure about the kind of plants are best for you, we will help you. 

Below is a list of the best plants to grow with hydroponics and an overview of what each plant needs to thrive. If you’re looking for more information on indoor gardening with hydroponics, make sure you read these essential tips before starting.

Vegetables

Top vegetables for hydroponic gardening and supplementing your food choices include some of the easiest to grow plants:

grow your own food

Lettuce

If you are a beginner in hydroponics, lettuce is the first plant you should grow. With shallow roots almost equivalent to its above-ground height, no tying up stakes is required. This saves a lot of time and effort. These edible hydroponics plants flourish well in various systems, including aeroponics, NFT, ebb and flow.

Top varieties of spinach you may consider growing to include Boston, Romaine, Bibb, Iceberg, and Buttercrunch. They grow fast and are ready to add to salads and soups within a month.

Cucumbers

Another edible hydroponics plant that loves growing in water is cucumbers. You may grow varieties, including vines and bushes. However, we recommend bushes to avoid the hassle of building a trellis and constant monitoring that comes along with it. Again the yield is good and faster than the soil-grown plants. Ideally, it is ready in 6 to 8 weeks.

It is a warm plant and requires sufficient light and high temperature. The best varieties include the seedless variants of European cucumbers, American slicers, and smooth Lebanese cucumbers.

Spinach

Spinach is an excellent leafy green to grow with hydroponics because it can be harvested frequently. It does not need much light and grows best in cool temperatures at a pH level of 6.0 to 7.5. Be sure to cut away any flower clusters on the hydroponics plants of spinach, or else they will go to seed, and the flavor and texture will change drastically!

The most suitable hydroponic systems to grow spinach are NFT (Nutrient Film Technique) and DWC (Deep Water Culture).

Tomatoes

Tomatoes need lots of light when growing in a greenhouse, so they make good candidates for hydroponic systems. They’re also low maintenance and will do well on just about anything you throw at them (compared to other vegetables). Hydroponics plants of tomatoes grow well when provided with adequate water and nutrients.

The only problem with growing tomatoes in hydroponics is they need more fertilizer than most other plants. Most growers prefer the Dutch bucket system in hydroponic gardening to grow tomatoes with two plants in each.

Vegetables you can grow apart from the above as hydroponics plants are bell peppers, kale, cabbage, and so on.

Fruits

Tickle your taste buds with homegrown fruits right from your hydroponics indoor gardening delights.

Strawberries

Available in day-neutral and short-day type, pick the former for your hydroponic indoor gardening. The best part of growing strawberries is having access to ready-to-eat fruit with zero risks of deterioration, as seen in trucked-in berries. Harvest is simple and requires no bending. Just pluck and eat in six to eight weeks.

They are an excellent root crop and can be planted in an ebb and flow hydroponics system. Try varieties such as Chandler, Brighton, Douglass, Tioga, and Red Gauntlet for growing the red-colored vegetable.

Hydroponics Fruits

Blueberries

This vitamin-rich fruit is another choice in hydroponics plants for your garden. Unlike strawberries, they take longer to bear fruit, but the wait is worth it. To grow a healthy crop, remember blueberries can’t tolerate alkaline conditions. a pH of 4.5 and 5.8 is ideal and provide them with ample light in the NFT system.

A tip – Blueberries need 80 ppm of sulfur, so grow them next to garlic (if possible). Garlic produces sulfur and will fulfill the necessary berries aptly. The best varieties to grow are PBB, Bluetta, Puru, Duke, Nui, Earliblue, and Sunrise

Grapes

One of the delicious juicy fruits you can enjoy throughout the year, grape cultivation can be as versatile as you can think it to be. Contrary to popular belief that you need a spacious setting for grape cultivation, these are found to grow well even in compact settings such as hydroponics. But, yes must cater to the needs for trellis, wires, and strings to let the vines climb.

Drip irrigation is the best hydroponic system to grow grapes or try ebb and flow hydroponic systems. And did we tell you that all these fruits are best grown from seeds rather than cuttings?

More fruits you can cultivate as hydroponics plants include watermelon, raspberries, cantaloupe, watermelon, and more.

Herbs

Herbs make excellent candidates for hydroponics because they require little space and maintenance once they are fully grown. Hydroponics gardening is ideal for growing these small shooting plants for medicinal and cooking purposes.

hydroponics plants

Basil

For those starting to experiment with hydroponics, basil is the most accessible herb to grow. For growing basil hydroponically, any water-rich medium will work; however, it is the most effective in a spray mist system. Basil grows well at higher temperatures and needs frequent pruning with a lot of light, a minimum of 11 hours.

Buy basil seedlings and grow them in NFT or the drip system hydroponic container. Just be a little cautious as the seedlings are prone to damping off and pythium pathogens. Some of the most popular hydroponics plants are Aroma 2, Dolly, and Nufar.

Parsley

Parsley, the common herb used in soups, salads, pasta sauces, and more, is great for hydroponic systems because it has shallow roots which are easy to keep moist. Not very difficult hydroponics plants to grow; just provide it with a warm temperature and lots of light, and it grows into a healthy plant that provides two to three yields a year.

You can buy seeds to grow parsley hydroponically. But remember to maintain a pH of 5.5. The crop is believed to be more aromatic and flavorful than soil-grown parsley grown. Popular varieties you can think about are Banquet, Argon, and Plain Italian Dark Green.

Rosemary

This herb is relatively low maintenance, so it is a great plant to start within your indoor hydroponic gardening endeavor. However, it grows well outdoors as well. Someone that loves a warm climate, rosemary is one of the many hydroponics plants that grow well at 75 to 84°F and humidity of 75% and ample light of nearly 11 hours.

The most used hydroponic systems for rosemary are the Ebb and Flow system, the Drip Method, NFT method, DWC, and aeroponics.

Other herbs you can grow as hydroponics plants are thyme, oregano, chives, sage, and parsley are all highly aromatic and easy to grow.

Flowers

Flower gardening isn’t easy especially when grown on soil. But hydroponically, it is not only easy but provides more yield as well.

Peace Lilies

An indoor plant, peace lilies are the easiest hydroponics plants to grow. But, overwatering can be detrimental to their health. Fortunately, they adapt themselves well to the hydroponic systems and produce tiny roots to fetch water. Remember to keep the leaves clean to avoid any aphid growth.

Peace lilies thrive beautifully at a temperature of 68 F to 80 F and a pH range of 5.5 to 6.5.

Hydroponics Flowers

Hoya

Hoya, also known as wax plant, does not require maintenance, making it suitable for growing hydroponically. They also despite over watering like peace lilies. The flowers, when fully grown, can be as wide as 1/4 inch up to 4″. They like bright light but not falling on them directly. Temperature is not an issue with hydroponics plants as they can grow in a wide range of temperatures from as cold as 50 degrees F to 77 F.

Interestingly, you have 200 varieties to choose from, and all of them showcase various colors and shapes. Indian Rope, Sweetheart Plant are some of the most common types you can grow.

Snapdragon

When pressed, the flowers represent a dragon-like mouth, hence called snapdragon. Unlike the two herbs above, this perennial herb requires ample water (it cannot withstand moisture conditions) and full sunlight to bloom. Snapdragon hydroponics plants can be as small as six inches to as tall as four feet, depending on the variety you choose to grow.

Maintain the pH level between 6.2 and 7.0 for optimum snapdragon growth.

Other flowers you can grow hydroponically are Zinnia, Petunia, Daisies, Orchids, Marigolds, and more.

Expert Tips on Growing Hydroponic Plants

  • Light. Since the plant is growing in water doesn’t mean they don’t need light, especially fruits and veggies. They need at least six hours of light. 
  • pH. An optimum pH level helps hydroponics plants to absorb nutrients well. Adjust it well for each plant.
  • Temperature. Most plants thrive well in temperatures ranging between 60–80°F. So, monitor the heat or cold environment when developing around your plants.

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