Hydroponic Herb Garden | What, How, and Why

What You Need To Know.

hydroponic herb garden

First things first have you noticed how expensive fresh herbs are at the grocery store? Well I have and yes I could settle for dried herbs but I can taste the difference, and we shouldn’t have settle for any less due to the price should we? It’s that little touch of love I like to add to my favorite dishes. And boy do I have a solution for you, now bare with me, it’s not so complicated to grow herbs hydroponically and I’ll guide you the whole way and don’t forget the links at the bottom of the page. Whether you have experience in hydroponics or starting out I’m sure you will some questions about growing herbs hydroponically. I’m here to answer some of the most frequently asked questions that I once sought the answer to. Now let’s get started.

What’s Hydroponics You May Ask?

If you’re new to hydroponics I’ll give in layman’s terms, to grow plants without soil, instead placing the plant's roots in liquid nutrient. Put simply it’s the soilless growth of plants. You can grow flowers, fruits, vegetables in pots placed in trays, hanging or as runners (similar to vines). Basically, you put your plant in a pot with the roots exposed (no soil) and allow the roots to sit in a solution, instead of soil it's normal to use a medium like Rockwool to keep the plant moist and insulated. Now let's get into the specifics. For a more in-depth view check out our entire section on hydroponics here.

What’s The Best Method To Grow Hydroponic Herbs?

Now for those who want to skip the Ins and Outs of gardening, tune out here and head straight to this site which offers ready to go hydroponic systems anywhere from using an old recycled wine bottle (pretty cool), to mini inside kits to fish tank/hydroponic herb garden.

Now for all the DIY nuts out there, don’t fret I haven’t forgotten you. I’ll give you the best DIY guide I have found in the next subheading; I’ll just give you some quick background. The most common and many would say the best method for growing hydroponic herbs is the Ebb and Flow system, this is used in ready to go hydroponic herb gardens and in my featured DIY guide. What’s this? This is in very basic terms it’s having a separate water source (nutrient reservoir), where water is pumped into a water tank where the pots sit and drained back out. Don’t freak out thinking how do I pump water in and out and when the pumps are on a timer. Problem solved. Now for some DIY.

DIY Hydroponic Herb Garden

hydroponic herb

I have found easily the best guide for making a DIY hydroponic herb garden. For those who want to start from scratch, all you need is some basic materials that you can find from your local warehouse store, some hydroponic supplies (from a gardening store) and an easy How to guide (I’ll give you the link) and the herbs you want to grow (hydroponic basil is my favorite!). There seemed to be some really good websites with detailed guides from a list of parts, YouTube tutorials and everything else you need to know about the growing cycle and what not.

I have never seen such an informative guide for growing hydroponic herbs from scratch on a website. I wish I had found this before I began hydroponic growing. So here it is, this website goes step by step for creating a relatively small system using a storage container look no further http://www.epicgardening.com/hydroponic-herb-garden-guide/. Once you have set up your system there is still a few things to ask yourself, like what herbs should I grow?

What Herbs Should I Grow?

Before you choose I’ll give you some background info, which may help, and I’ll include my favorite just in case (hydroponic basil). Now depending how impatient you are may influence your decision. Most herbs take 4-6 weeks from a seedling to harvest. If you want to start from a seed double that time frame (8-12 weeks). There is no right or wrong choice, however growing from a seedling is pretty much no-fail for all those first-time gardeners. My top 5 herbs to grow hydroponically would be Basil, Chives, Oregano, Thyme, and Sage. They do not require a cutting to grow and therefore are less fiddly. Now for each herb there are variations, just with hydroponic basil, there are Lemon Basil, Anise Basil, Cinnamon Basil, Italian Basil, Thai Basil and soooo much more.

What Conditions And Nutrients Do I Need To Grow My Hydroponic Herbs Once Everything Is Set Up?

Depending on what you grow hydroponically generally will have its own set of environment and nutrients. Hopefully, you’re lucky geographically and won’t need much to alter your growing area, herbs are pretty resilient generally and need a constant light source (all you need is a lamp). Some herbs are better suited in a garden that grows specific fruits, vegetables, and flowers. E.g. hydroponic basil works well being planted near tomatoes, peppers, oregano, asparagus, and petunias and it deters pests! Now I may as well continue with growing basil hydroponically as an example, another reason this herb is my favourite is that it grows at a very wide pH range 5.1-8.5.

General Hydroponics

Now let's talk nutrients for your water reservoir, back to my featured DIY website which includes all you need to know about fertilizer for your hydroponic herb garden. If you’re new to hydroponics fertilizers come in liquid or dissolvable salts. They also come in stage-specific packs (usually 3) or a standard all in one. The most popular fertilizer hands down in the stage-specific liquid fertilizer by General hydroponics. Stage-specific sounds confusing but it’s really not. It makes sense, as your hydroponic herb garden grows it needs different nutrients. It’s as simple as that, and it comes at a very reasonable price. Going for around 20 bucks from your local gardening store.

Wrap Up

To keep it simple, I’ll ask you this; do you want a:

  • Ready to go hydroponic herb garden OR a DIY hydroponic herb garden?
  • Which herb will you grow? Remember I listed the top 5 popular and easy hydroponic herbs in my What herbs should I grow section and there is a link!
  • ​Once you have chosen your herb pick up some General Hydroponics from your local gardening store.
  • Read your instruction manual (if you have a ready to go herb garden) for DIY info on pumps, timers, and environmental requirements.

Don’t forget here is a lot of information out there on growing hydroponic herbs and you can always refer to my DIY link. Even if you have a ready to go hydroponic herb garden there is plenty of info on nutrients and growing requirements. You won’t regret growing a hydroponic herb garden, I cook with herbs everyday and in the end I am saving money and getting the satisfaction of watching my herbs grow. I find it strangely relaxing and satisfying.

Good luck and happy growing.

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