Hydroponics is used at domestic scale by amateurs for both indoor and outdoor home cultivation of ornamental plants, flowers, fruit, vegetables, weed, and gardening in general.
Hydroponic kits and systems for home-scale cultivation in pots or with automated systems and are easy to find in the retail market and use the same technologies as professional hydroponics agriculture but on a smaller scale.
These systems make it possible to create authentic hydroponic vegetable gardens inside a house or on roofs, terraces, and balconies.
Laterlite Agri Expanded Clay pebbles (also known as expanded clay grow rocks or expanded clay pellets) are the ideal growing medium for home hydroponics because they:
- have good porosity (> 80%) and water retention (up to 30%)
- ensure the correct degree of moisture throughout the pot because of their excellent capillary power
- have a granulometry that is controlled and optimised
- have a low dust and particle content that reduces wear in pumping systems
- prevent the formation of dangerous stagnating water and ensures correct oxygenation of the root system
- absorb the nutrients contained in the nutrient solution, enabling them to be optimally supplied to the root system, which will consequently grow healthier and more uniformly
- will not decompose and do not contain cytotoxic substances or pathogens
- provide a substrate that is clean, healthy, sustainable, durable, and recyclable
- resist compaction and crushing
- have excellent insulating properties that minimise extreme temperature changes within the container
- are lightweight (approximate density 330 Kg/m3), which make planting and handling the containers quick and easy
Various plants are known to be particularly suitable for hydroponic cultivation in expanded clay pebbles growing media, including indoor species like Dracena, Ficus, Dieffenbachia, Sanseveri, and different varieties of orchids or weed, chili peppers etc.
Typically, a hydroponic system for indoor plants will use special perforated pots or trays placed within a larger container into which a solution of water and nutrients is fed. This solution is partly absorbed by the Laterlite Agri granules and thus becomes available to the root system.
An indicator (hydrometer) in the pot monitors the water level, which should be in contact with the lower part the root system without completely submerging it.
The expanded clay plays a fundamental role in maintaining the correct balance of water, mineral, and oxygen in the nutrient solution.
Using the same principles, expanded clay is used with success in aquaponics and phytopurification systems, such as constructed wetlands.
Recommended products: Laterlite Agri 3-8 and 8-20