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At Ashton Horticulture, we're often asked about the best seeds for hydroponics. The answer really depends on what you want from your hydroponic setup - do you want herbs and spices, vegetables, or flowers? Tons of different seeds for hydroponics are available, and it can be hard to know which ones will give you the best yield.
In this guide, we'll cover the best seeds for hydroponics, as well as some things to watch out for when buying them. First though, let's define hydroponics and look at some of the key benefits.
The definition of hydroponics is the act of growing herbs and plants without soil. Instead of using soil, the harvest utilises water filled with nutrients. The water passes through a nourishing filter, and the roots of the plant or herb use it as their main source of food. This helps to accelerate growth and boost overall yield. Growers often turn to hydroponic gardening as it's the most versatile solution for growing.
- It's environmentally friendly. Hydroponic farms don't require a great deal of space or land. This helps to reduce the number of pesticides and chemicals used in traditional gardening.
- It's easy to control the growing environment. You can set the lighting, nutrients, air and temperature to precise levels. This means it is not only advantageous for seasonal outdoor plants to grow within a hydroponics system, but it has also allowed indoor gardeners to learn what can make their grows thrive.
- It produces higher yields. For commercial growers, this means that they can make more money from each grow.
- It uses no soil. That means there is no long-term degradation in the health of the soil, meaning growers can achieve the same results year on year.
To get the most from your hydroponic setup, you need to know what seeds work best. Below is our ultimate guide to the best growing seeds for hydroponic growing.
Basil seeds are the perfect choice for hydroponic growing. While it can be grown outdoors, basil grows best indoors with a hydroponic setup. With its fresh aroma and flavour, basil is one of the most common herbs that people grow at home. It comes in hundreds of varieties and tastes, so you can experiment to find your favourites. It is a fast-growing plant which makes it ideal for indoor hydroponic growing because it yields quicker than other plants.
If you’re interested in growing basil indoors, you will need a hydroponic system. Plants like basil and cilantro grow best in warmer environments. Plus, modern hydroponic systems offer a range of benefits over outdoor growing including:
- Increased range of disease resistance.
- Easy-to-handle pelleted seed.
- Slow bolt types.
- High-yielding varieties specially bred for container growing and protected cropping.
When thinking about the best seeds for hydroponics, tomato seeds are a classic. They grow well on their own or as part of a mix in a hydroponic system. Tomatoes provide an excellent source of vitamins and nutrients which makes them popular with all sorts of growers - from small-scale home growers to commercial operations.
Best of all, hydroponic growing systems allow you to grow multiple tomatoes at the same time. In a pot or garden bed, one infected seedling could destroy an entire tomato crop, which could result in wasted time and money.
If you are looking for a plant that yields hundreds of pounds in weight and allows you to make use of vertical space, then look no further than tomato plants. A hydroponic setup will make growing tomatoes indoors easy, with very little resources.
When people think of cherry trees they usually think of the sweet red variety found growing outdoors. However, there are varieties of cherry seeds that can be grown in containers indoors. They are well suited to hydroponic growing because the seeds are easy to handle and germinate quickly. It's one of the best plants for beginners looking to get into hydroponic growing. During their growth, cherry trees can produce high-quality fruit using minimal resources.
Whilst cherry trees can grow up to 20 feet tall outdoors, the indoor varieties tend to be dwarf trees. They do not take up too much space and allow you to grow other plants inside your hydroponic environment. The only downside to growing cherries indoors is it can take a long period of time (around 2-3 years).
For the true chilli connoisseur, hydroponic growing grants you full control over every aspect of your plant's growth. You can set up separate sections for different types of plants and keep them all well isolated from each other. This allows you to change the light, temperature and watering schedule for each room. Plus, your chilli seeds won't be at risk of soil-borne diseases.
If you like a little heat with your meals then chillies are a must-have plant for your hydroponic grow tent. With hundreds of varieties to choose from, there is sure to be one that's hot enough for your palette.
If you’re thinking about growing chillies indoors, here are the best varieties:
- Bishops Crown - Mild
- Summer Heat (Jalapeno) - Hot
- Inferno - Hot
- Chilli Pepper ‘Heatwave - Hot
- Joe’s Long - Hot
- Tabasco - Very hot
- Demon red - Very hot
- Naga Jolokia/ghost pepper - Very hot
- Tropical Heat - Extremely hot
- Prairie Fire - Extremely hot
Now that you have picked the perfect seeds for indoor growing, you need the perfect seed mix. This is where the CANNA Terra Seed Mix comes in. It's a potting mix that's perfect for germinating the seeds of the plants you want to grow. It is also great for retaining water, which gives the seeds a strong chance of germinating correctly. It works great with CANNA Start, which is a balanced one-part nutrient for seedlings and cuttings.
CANNA Terra Seed Mix is also suitable for use when rooting cuttings.
Now you should have enough information to select the right seeds for your hydroponic setup. However, if you need any more assistance with hydroponics, contact us here.