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Why hydroponics can be considered as more profitable than traditional agriculture?
Soil is an important component of agriculture. But with the growth of cities and the shortage of living space more land is brought away from cultivation. The stress today is on increasing the concrete jungle even though the world population has increased hugely and food shortage is a major problem. With the death of rable land, newer scientific techniques such as hydroponics are coming into existence to provide a sustainable food ource. Hydroponics offers sustainable food growth in a shorter period of time as opposed to traditional farming. It is also a dirt-free way of growing crops and getting closer to the food shortage solution.
Here are some reasons why hydroponics gets thumbs up over traditional format.
Soil can hold onto water immensely and the roots of the plants make their way through it to get moisture at any level. Every plant spreads out its roots in all directions to get the most water possible from any length. As a result, it is ractically impossible to measure how much water each plant requires for its growth. You will also be unable to understand the amount of nutrients required for the proper growth of the plants. Excess water will allow the nutrients to penetrate through the soil so that you cannot understand the exact amount of nutrients necessary for the growth of the plants.
In hydroponics, the amount of water and nutrition can be monitored. In fact, the amount of nutrition required by a plant is mixed with the water in which the plant’s roots remain submerged. This ensures optimum growth of the plants. Also, the excess water that is not required by the plant is recycled again to the plants to save water.
Conserving water is a big step considering that the amount of fresh water is depleting fast. Reducing the irrigational cost also helps in bringing down the overall cost of agriculture for the farmers. Crops grown in soil use almost 10 times more water then what is used in hydroponics. Therefore, you will be saving more water by opting for the newer technique. This is because in hydroponics nutrient rich fresh water is used for crop production. The extra water is routed again to the plant and reduces the overall amount of water used in growing plants hydroponically.
Traditional farming requires the usage of pesticides and insecticides to save the production from pests and diseases. Most of the times these bugs and insects hide beneath the soil layer waiting to attack the crops. Some diseases like root rot, mildew, etc are even transferred to the next instalment of crops. This causes major loss of crops and the farmers drown in debt.
In urban hydroponic farming, there is no need to use pesticides because the plants are grown in a controlled environment that does not encourage the growth of pests, bugs or diseases. Since the advent of the bugs and diseases is stopped before it starts there is no way in which it can be carried over to the next set of crops. So, farmers tend to save more by opting for hydroponics over the traditional method of farming.
Traditional farmers always had to battle with the growth of stubborn weeds with herbicides. This has enhanced agriculture costs over the years. The alternative is to weed out by hand which is equally difficult and time consuming. The weeds consumed the nutrition and water provided for the growth of the plants and also created a space crunch for the crops. Therefore, allowing them to grow is not an option at all.
With the hydroponic agricultural system, the option of allowing the growth of the weeds has been wiped out altogether. The plants, in this case, are grown out of choice through a strict system of selection. Growers choose only the plants that they need for their farms or homes. The seedlings are grown from the beginning and each plant is replanted into the hydroponic system by hand. This eliminates the chances of weeds growing in between them. This is a long-term solution for the farmers and reduces the cost of growing crops and saves time as well as money. There is no scope of trampling on delicate sprouts while trying to take out the weeds.
Hydroponically grown plants are brought up under a controlled environment which eliminates the risk of crop failure. In the traditional system, weather conditions, pests, bugs, diseases, etc ruined crops. But in hydroponic indoor farming, such possibilities are not present. So, certain sustainability can be reached. Also, in this method, the plants are grown in water mixed with nutritional elements. So, the plants get the nutrition easily and directly from the water and do not have to draw it from the depths of the soil.
The plants in hydroponics grow in the light of LEDs all through the day and night. So, they naturally grow faster than expected. In traditional farming, the plants receive sunlight during the day only. But in hydroponics, the light for growth is received round the clock. Therefore, the harvesting stage approaches faster than expected. Farmers can take full advantage of the winter season as well since they are not dependent on natural conditions. The produce from hydroponic agriculture reaches the farms faster than the traditional methods.
Hydroponic agricultural farms have a great future in terms of profits and sustainability. They are undoubtedly economical than the traditional systems and more likely to provide consistent results. There are a number of hydroponic systems to choose from for the grower depending on space. Opting for this new age science means saying bye to all the dirt and grime associated with soil. It offers the freedom of a clean way of agriculture that ensures fast harvests and more return on investment. Choosing hydroponics over the traditional methods is a wise choice but the concept is still being picked up people. It definitely has the potential to be the future of agriculture because it offers a lot more profitability than the traditional method.