From the Latin "hydro" (water) and "ponos" (work) or "work by water", hydroponics is a revolution for indoor cultivation, synonymous with automated closed systems and producing many positive returns for the commercial/hobby cultivator; including:
Water is the vital factor for all life on Earth. In plants, water is used to transport nutrients and assimilate them through the roots. As a result, optimised water control produces consistent results regarding liveliness and production.
Essential components for your plants
Nitrogen is responsible for the growth of the plant and can move from one part of the plant to another according to its needs. Nitrogen deficiency results in slow growth, symptoms appear first on leaves at the bottom of the plant that turns yellow before falling. These symptoms then spread to the rest of the plant. The stem and veins of the leaves can turn purple-red. Nitrate is a form of nitrogen used in hydroponics for its slow absorption. Remember to reduce the contributions during the bloom because it alters the taste of the harvest.
Phosphorus is necessary for photosynthesis and energy transfer within the plant. Fast-growing plants need more phosphorus during germination, planting, cuttings and flowering. A lack of phosphorus slows growth, the leaves are smaller, bluish and often spotted. The main veins turn purple-red on the inner side of the leaves. Phosphorus deficiency is common when the pH of the culture support is greater than 7 or less than 5.8.
Fundamental to cell synthesis and growth. Calcium deficiency, uncommon indoors (usually caused by high humidity or dense production) prevents the maintenance of cell walls. The plant, more sensitive, seems "soft" and its young leaves wither.
Fundamental to enzymatic systems and electron transport during photosynthesis. A catalyst for the production of chlorophyll, iron is necessary for the reduction and assimilation of nitrates and sulphates. Iron deficiency is common when the pH is above 6.5. Symptoms appear on the smallest leaves that turn yellow between the veins that remain green.
Magnesium, an indispensable element, is the central molecule of chlorophyll, which transforms light energy into chemical energy. Magnesium deficiency is manifested by chlorosis (slight discolouration between the veins of old leaves), rust spots, and early leaf fall. Excess disrupts growth and leaves remain small.
Potassium improves the colour of the flowers and the flavour of the fruits, giving the plants a better resistance to pests, diseases and bad weather. Deficiency results in yellowing of older leaves beginning at the tip. The plants are more sensitive and the stems brittle, rusty spots appear on the leaves.
Enzymes act as an accelerator (catalyst) of a whole series of biochemical processes of the plant. They turn carbohydrates into alcohol in seconds, compared to weeks in normal times. Enzymes improve the water retention capacity and aeration of the substrate which remains clean, free of excess elements (this is important if reused). Both dead parts and roots decompose faster, releasing many nutrients that focus on the protection of pathogens. The root system is more efficient.