First off, no that is NOT what we are growing here (yet)!
Hydroponics is a plant-growing method that eschews soil for nutrient-filled water. The water can be infused with artificial fertilizers, or it can be a natural miniature ecosystem where fish thrive off the roots and vice-versa. Lettuce, tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers can be relatively easy to grow hydroponically.
Hydroponic growing has many benefits over traditional soil growing. First and foremost, it’s safer and healthier. By eliminating the soil, you also eliminate many of the possible bugs and vermin that could get at your plants, as well as any diseases these pests could potentially be carrying.
I know this might seem counter-intuitive, but growing plants hydroponically also uses less water. That’s right, less! Because the plants are sitting in nutrient-rich water, there’s no need to water them. You may need to change your water occasionally (this will depend on what/how much you grow), but gone are the days of dumping water into a pile of dirt multiple times a day.
User Austin ESS over at Instructables built an awesome indoor hydroponic system using two-by-fours, some plastic containers, and a couple small aquariums. As you can see below, he starts with a pretty simple 3-tiered wood base.
From there, you just add your aquariums and plastic crop plots, run a little piping, and you’ve got yourself a pretty self-contained growing system.
Head on over to his full build and start growing your own produce with hydroponics all year round!