Hydroponics by definition is also called: aquiculture which is a method of cultivating plants by growing them in soil through which water containing dissolved inorganic nutrient salts is pumped. It produces approximately 20 times the normal production volume of field crops. This method can take place in-doors in a controlled enviroment. This flexibility makes it a viable, powerful and cost-effective solution to production of fruits and vegatables. It also has basic principles that apply to Science, Technology, Engineering and Math that can be applied to learning and discovery for children, adults and communities. Some value of Hydronponics include:
- Requires 5% of the normal water requirements for field crops
- Can be built on nondurable lands and close to major city markets
- Works in a variety of environments: urban, suburban, countryside, desert etc.
- Does not use herbicides or pesticides reducing harmful chemical use and consumption
- Significant operating and capital cost savings over field agriculture
- Drastically reduces transportation costs to market resulting in further savings, higher quality and fresher foods on delivery, and less transportation pollution providing a positve environmental impact
- Potential easy scalability from small to very large food production facilities
- Teaches core competencies of STEM from growth through production including solar energy, soil chemistry, photosynthesis, water purification, etc.