If you want to embrace a sustainable lifestyle, choosing Hydroponic farming might just be the first step.
But wait… what exactly is hydroponic farming?
Well, for the uninitiated, hydroponic farming is simply a form of farming that does not involve soil.
This type of farming has a significantly low water requirement and space needs, making it ideal for both people living in apartments and those with gardens.
But obviously, not all plants can thrive in this type of farming. So, what are some of the plants and vegetables that you can grow with hydroponic farming?
Well, that is exactly what we will discuss in the course of this article. As you keep reading, you will find a detailed insight into the best veggies, herbs, and fruits for your hydroponic garden.
15 Best Hydroponic Plants (Vegetables, Herbs, or Fruits)
Hydroponic systems offer an excellent opportunity to cultivate a diverse range of plants. Discover the 15 best hydroponic plants, including vegetables, herbs, and fruits, that thrive in soil-less environments and ensure bountiful yields.
Perfect for your salads and sandwiches, Lettuce is probably one of the most common vegetables grown in the Hydroponic system. They have an incredibly fast growth rate, and caring for them is equally simple.
You can grow this vegetable in almost any Hydroponic system, including (but not limited to) NFT, the Ebb and Flow, and more. And since lettuce is so easy to care for, this might also be one of your first choices if you planning to try Hydroponic farming for the first time.
Lettuce usually requires cool temperatures, and the pH level should be between 6 to 7. In most instances, they will grow within 30 days or less.
If you love strawberries, you’ve probably whined about their seasonal nature. You can’t find them locally most of the time, and even when available, they can be quite expensive depending on your location. Hydroponics systems solve this issue by allowing you to grow your own strawberries!
Harvesting these berries at home is incredibly simple and convenient. And the best part — you will have them throughout the year!
But unlike Lettuce which works well in almost any kind of hydroponics system, strawberries seem to do relatively better when in the Ebb-and-Flow system. You can also try deep water culturing with a nutrient film.
Strawberries take around two months or 60 days to grow, and they seem to do well at a pH level of 5.5 to 6.2.
But if you plan to grow them in your home Hydroponics system, avoid purchasing strawberry seeds, as they won’t be ready with berries for a couple of years.
Switch seeds with cold-stored options that are already at a growing stage. And remember, when it comes to strawberries, the best options would be Chandler, Tioga, and Brighton if using a hydroponic system.
These are an extremely common variant of vining plants primarily grown in commercial greenhouses. Luckily, with the Hydroponics system in place, you can also grow them in the comfort of your home.
Cucumbers grow rapidly, and they also end up producing excellent yields. There are also lots of varieties that you can choose from, but consider working with the thick American slicers, the elongated and seedless variants of European cucumbers, or the impeccably smooth Lebanese cucumbers.
Each of these plants will thrive well in your Hydroponic system. Plus, as cucumber is known to be a warm plant, ensure that you supply it with ample light and high temperatures. Ideally, these plants thrive best at a pH level of 5.5 to 6.0.
Spinach is yet another fast-growing plant that can be a suitable fit for your Hydroponics System. While they thrive well in almost all Hydroponic systems, the Nutrient Film technique works best. But if you aren’t comfortable with this option, choose any other technique that will keep the soil nutrient-rich and duly oxygenated.
As with every other form of Hydroponics Farming, with Spinach, you will need significantly less water when compared to your home garden. Besides, you can grow them from scratch right when they are seeds.
This type of leafy green is known to grow within one month or 40 days, but remember to keep the pH between 6.0 to 7.5, and the temperature is duly regulated.
If you are planning to grow Sweet Spinach, make sure the temperature ranges between 65 Degrees to 72 Degrees F. The plant may take longer to grow if the temperature is slightly lower than the mentioned options.
When it comes to types, you can choose anything from Catalinas, Savoys, Red Cardinals, and even the Bloomsdale. All of them are easy to grow and even easier to care for.
Beans are yet another productive and extremely low-maintenance option for your Hydroponic garden. These legumes are used in most meals, and growing them at home will ensure a regular supply at a lower overall cost relative to buying them from grocery stores.
You can choose anything from string, green, pole, and even pinto beans. You can also consider working with Lima beans. They aren’t a very popular option, but they can do well with the soil-less system.
Now, assuming you grow the pole or string beans in your Hydroponic garden, you will need a trellis. This will ensure that the plants are duly supported when they need it the most. Germination will take anything from 3 to 8 days, and harvesting can start around 6 to 8 weeks after that.
Once you’re done with harvest, you can continue growing the crop for another 3 to 4 months. But before you do all that, remember that beans thrive best in warm temperatures, and the ideal pH level will range from 6.0 to 6.3.
6. Bell Peppers
While they might appear slightly advanced at the outset, Bell peppers are an excellent plant for your Hydroponic garden. While growing them at home, you need to strictly ensure that they do not achieve their full height.
To avoid this, ensure the plant is pruned and pinched at about 7 or 8 inches. This will spur their growth and make way for bigger and fuller vegetables. In terms of technique, you should try the Deep Water Culture while growing Bell Peppers. If this is impossible, the Ebb and Flow techniques are equally good.
Most Bell Peppers take around 90 days to achieve full growth, and their ideal pH level ranges from 6.0 to 6.5. And while growing them at home, ensure they get plenty of full light.
Ideally, bell peppers need around 18 hours of complete light at a stretch. You can also raise the light rack as your bell peppers start growing. But when using artificial lighting, keep it at least 6 inches from the light. The Ace, Vidi, and Yolo variants are all great bell pepper types for your water-based farming system.
If you thought you couldn’t grow herbs in a Hydroponic system, you couldn’t be more wrong. These herbs are not just easy to grow but also equally easy to maintain.
You can source them from your local stores and plant them in a standard condition. Ideally, it takes around 6 or 8 weeks for the Chives to completely mature.
While Chives do not need plenty of water, they do need plenty of light. Their ideal temperature is warm, and they grow best upon receiving full light at a stretch of 12 to 14 hours. And for pH, a level between 6.0 to 6.1 is sufficient.
Note that after harvesting the Chives, they will need around 3 to 4 weeks to regrow again. So, be patient and allow them this time for regrowth.
Rich in Vitamins, Blueberries are another top choice for your Hydroponics Garden. Unlike strawberries, Blueberries take a fairly long time to grow. Sometimes, it may take them months to bear the first fruit.
These antioxidant-rich fruits thrive best in NFT systems with a warm temperature and a pH between 4.5 and 6.0. Since growing them from seeds is not the best option, we recommend transplants.
Did you know that a hydroponic system can cut down on the number of trips you have to make to the grocery stores for tomatoes?
Yes! You read that right! Tomatoes (regular and cherry variants) can be grown in your Hydroponic garden. So, if you are tired of consuming commercially grown tomatoes, consider growing them soil-less right in the comfort of your home.
While growing these veggies, make sure you provide ample light and hot temperatures. If you plan to grow them indoors, purchase some grow lights in advance. The ideal pH level ranges from 5.5 to 6.5.
If you are a health freak, Kale might be one of the best options for your Hydroponic System. Nutritious yet incredibly delectable, this is an excellent vegetable for anyone looking to stay healthy all way round.
Since Kale has been grown in Hydroponic systems for years, you can be completely assured that it will thrive well in your home or water garden. Kale is easy to maintain and grows well in moderate temperatures. The pH level should ideally range from 5.5 to 6.5.
Like Chives, Basil is yet another herb that thrives well in a soilless system. For best results, you may want to try the NFT or the Drip techniques. After the plant is fully mature, you can start harvesting it almost daily. We recommend you trim it instead of pinching the leaves for better and more consistent growth.
Basils require plenty of light, and they are likely to undergo poor growth when they do not have ample lighting. Ideally, they should get around 11 hours of uninterrupted lighting at a warm temperature. The recommended pH level will range from 5.5 to 6.5.
Grapes are vine-based fruits that require plenty of care and maintenance. So, if you are a newbie just starting Hydroponic farming, we wouldn’t recommend grapes as your first option.
Grapes work best in a bucket system. And being vine-based, they will need a trellis for added support, just like beans. And when growing them, ensure that the root doesn’t rot, and the pH is duly balanced. The ideal pH level would range from 5.5 to 6.0. While growing grapes, also make sure they get plenty of water.
This is an extremely healthy veggie with plenty of flavors and excellent texture. You can grow them in an Ebb and flow hydroponic system. Make sure the stalks are wet, and the roots aren’t submerged. The ideal pH level would range from 5.7 to 6.0.
With a perfectly savory tinge, Sage is yet another vital herb for most chefs, and growing them is equally simple. The plant thrives best in an NFT system, but you can also try other techniques, especially if you plan to grow it with other herbs. The ideal pH level would range from 5.5. to 6.5.
Bearing plenty of similarities with watermelons, Cantaloupes are often termed netted melons for their net-like skin. They work best in the Ebb and Flow System, and the ideal pH would range from 6.0 to 6.8. As with melons, you may have to use nets to support the Cantaloupes.
And that’s it — you now have some of the best options for your hydroponic garden. While it may seem overwhelming to grow them (especially if you’re just getting started), over time, the process will get much simpler. That is because hydroponic farming is not just sustainable but also quick, simple, and hassle-free, with much fewer roadblocks than conventional gardening.