Hydroponic indoor plants can do without potting compost. With these tips, you can create the optimal soil-free growing environment for your plants.
If you can’t water your houseplants that often, you should convert them to hydroponics – but for that to work, there are a few important things to consider. We’ll show you what these are in this video
Hydroponics for potted plants has been around for a relatively long time. However, planting techniques are still often used incorrectly or hydroponic plants are cared for incorrectly and die. Hydroponics is actually the simplest of all types of cultivation because it is dirt-free, allergy-friendly, durable, and well tolerated by almost all types of plants. Apart from water and a little fertilizer, no further maintenance is necessary with hydroponics. We give tips on how to successfully grow your indoor plants without soil.
Tip 1: expanded clay instead of clay granules
There are different substrates for hydroponics that are more or less suitable for soilless plant care. In addition to expanded clay, lava fragments, clay granules, and expanded slate are used in hydroponics. Expanded clay is the cheapest and most suitable substrate if you want to create hydroponics. The inflated clay balls are very porous so that water and nutrients can be drawn through by the plants. The balls themselves do not store water, which ensures good air circulation and oxygen supply in the substrate. Conventional clay granulate, on the other hand, is more compact and allows less oxygen to reach the roots. This easily leads to a lack of oxygen in the houseplants. Expanded slate and lava fragments are particularly suitable for very large hydroponic plants such as palm trees.
Expanded clay is better suited for hydroponics than conventional clay granules
The well-known Seramis is a specially prepared clay granulate whose properties differ greatly from classic expanded clay. The Seramis particles serve directly as a water reservoir, from which the plants can draw liquid into the (earthy) pot ball if necessary. A Seramis planting is not a hydroponic culture in the strict sense of the word and follows its own planting and care rules. The substrates cannot be exchanged at will!
Tip 2: make the root ball free of soil
If you want to hydroponic a potted plant from the ground, you should definitely wash out the root ball thoroughly. Remove any dead or rotten roots from the plant at the same time. When planting in clay balls, organic components should no longer adhere to the root ball. Otherwise, these residues will start to rot in hydroponics. Good preparation of the plants is essential here.
Wash the root ball well before hydroponic repotting
Tip 3: don’t water too much
The water level indicator, which is inserted into the pot in hydroponics, serves as an orientation for the water requirement of the plant. It measures how much water is in the pot. You should be more cautious about watering, especially when new hydroponic plants are growing. The roots have to get used to the new environment first. And even later, the water level indicator should always be just above the minimum. Permanently too much water in the plant pot causes the roots of the indoor plants to rot and leads to a lack of oxygen. You should only fill up with irrigation water to the maximum if you are about to take a longer pause, for example, because of vacation.
Tip: Do not use organic fertilizers, but regularly add special nutrient solutions for hydroponic plants to the irrigation water. So your hydroponic plant is completely taken care of.
Lisa N. Marsh is an editor at Crown-Times, Home & Garden.
Being from the north, Lisa not only loves Roses and Peonies but also has a soft spot for all things nautical and Scandinavian country style. As a home and garden editor, she is always on the lookout for clever garden design ideas, practical outdoor furniture, and special accessories.