Discover the Truth: Do Plants Grow Better in Water or Soil?
Do plants grow better in water or soil? This is perhaps one of the most common questions among gardeners. Many want to grow their crops in water while there are those who prefer the conventional way of planting in soil. In this article, we will show some of the advantages and disadvantages of water and soil as planting mediums. That way, you can easily decide which option is best suited for your needs.
But before we will ultimately answer that question, it would be good to first identify what plants need for them to grow.
Water vs Soil as Planting Medium
#1 - Water
#2 - Soil
Do Plants Grow Better in Water or Soil?
Growing plants in water is different from growing in soil. It is hard to say which one is better but location, space area, and personal preferences are important factors to consider for the method to use.
Hydroponics is useful for growing crops where space is limited. With this technique, you can utilize a very small space into a vertical hydroponics garden. However, if you have a big space and access to fertile soil, that could be the best option for your situation.
How Plants Grow in the Soil
When growing crops in the ground, it is important for the soil to have lots of nutrients. The soil also needs amendment which can be in the form of compost or fertilizer. The soil contains microorganisms, bacteria and earthworks which break down the soil particles into nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium and other basic elements that the plant can use. If the soil is not adequately amended, lower concentration of nutrients will be available for the plants.
Additionally, water is vital for the roots to absorb these basic elements. Without water, the plants will not be able to absorb enough nutrients to grow.
In terms of maintenance, crops that are planted in soil need regular watering so the roots are able to properly absorb the nutrients from the soil. However, you also need to make sure that you are not over watering as the plants may also drown.
How Plants Grow in the Water
The hydroponics method of planting does not use soil but it uses an inert and sterile medium which is water. Since water by itself does not contain the right nutrition for the plants to grow, nutrients are added to the water. The plant’s roots will absorb these nutrients directly because they are already in the basic form that the plants can readily absorb.
One of the best things about hydroponics is that you can easily test the nutrient solution in the water that is available to the plant roots. You can then add the needed elements if they are inadequate. As long as you keep the nutrient level in the water, you’ll give your plants a boost.
Cost of Growing in Water vs Soil
Setting up a garden on the ground does not require much investment. This is unlike setting up a hydroponics system which requires you to purchase several equipment such as pumps, grow lights, trays, reservoirs and a timer among others. This entail a huge amount of initial investment. However, most hydroponics gardener would say that it is worth it in the long run because this kind of gardening technique is less expensive to maintain.
Growing plants in water and in soil differs in so many ways. What might be best for you might not be the best method for another due to given circumstances and personal preferences.
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