The term “hydroponics” implies “working water” (hydro means water and ponos means labor). Throughout history, many different cultures have used hydroponic farming techniques. According to Howard M. Resh’s book Hydroponic Food Production, “the hanging gardens of Babylon, the floating gardens of the Aztecs of Mexico, and those of the Chinese are instances of ‘Hydroponic’ civilization.” Egyptian hieroglyphic texts going back hundreds of years B.C. indicate plant growth in water.” While hydroponics is an ancient way of cultivating plants, much progress has been achieved in this unique field of agriculture throughout the years.
Throughout the previous century, scientists and horticulturists experimented with several hydroponic systems. Growing fresh food in non-arable places of the world and areas with little to no soil was one of the possible uses of hydroponics that encouraged study. During WWII, hydroponics was employed to serve troops stationed on non-arable Pacific islands with fresh vegetables cultivated in locally constructed hydroponic systems.
Hydroponics was then included into the space program later in the century. Hydroponics readily fit into NASA’s sustainability plans when they explored the feasibility of putting a civilisation on another planet or the Earth’s moon. By the 1970s, hydroponics was involving more than just scientists and analysts. Traditional farmers and keen enthusiasts alike were drawn to the benefits of hydroponic gardening.
Some of the advantages of hydroponics
- Higher yields than traditional, soil-based agriculture.
- Allowing food to be grown and consumed in places of the world where soil cannot sustain crops.
- Eliminating the need for widespread pesticide usage (given that most pests dwell in the earth), efficiently cleaning our air, water, soil, and food.
As the numerous benefits of hydroponics become clear, the pace of study accelerates at an exponential rate. Aeroponics and aquaponics are leading the way, and no one knows what the future holds for such an innovative green technology. General Hydroponics will continue to push the boundaries of innovation and deliver cutting-edge technology and resources.