How Do Hydroponic Towers Work? Complete Guide

While there are other metabolic pathways involved in plant growth, water, sunshine, and vital nutrients are the three major factors that drive plant growth. In a conventional garden, the soil holds the plant in place and serves as a storage area for nutrients and water. 

By giving the plant’s roots a nutrient-rich aqueous solution that keeps them hydrated and fed while additional lighting options simulate sunlight, a hydroponics system removes the necessity for soil.

In a hydroponics plant system, plants are either cultivated in a soil-free medium like rock wool, coconut coir, LECA, vermiculite, or perlite or suspended straight in the aqueous solution. 

An active or passive system is used to provide the nutritional solution to the plant’s roots. Do you know what these two systems are? 

Pumps are used in active systems to aerate and circulate nutrient solutions, transporting the vitamins to the plant’s root zone for assimilation. 

Pumps and moving parts are absent from passive systems. Through flooding, gravitational force, or capillary action, the nutrient solutions are delivered to the root zone.

What Are The 3 Disadvantages Of Hydroponics Systems?

The advantages of hydroponics are clear to perceive. But there are some clear drawbacks. As with anything, it’s critical to comprehend the cons to prevent unpleasant surprises.

  1. Setup Costs Are High

A hydroponics system costs more to buy and build than a conventional garden. The price of a system varies based on its type, size, and whether it is prefabricated or created from separate parts to create a specific design.

  1. Needs Continual Maintenance And Monitoring

Compared to conventional plant cultivation, hydroponics demands more oversight and micromanagement. 

All system components—lights, temperature, and numerous facets of the nutrient solution, such as pH and electrical conductivity—need regular attention to create a meticulously controlled growing environment. 

The nutrient solution must also be flushed and changed regularly to avoid accumulation and clogging.

  1. Waterborne Infections

Since hydroponically grown plants are cultivated in water rather than soil, waterborne infections are much higher. 

Infections can swiftly spread across the growing system, impacting the entire collection of plants due to the system’s continual water circulation. In extreme circumstances, a waterborne illness can quickly eliminate all the plants in a hydroponics system.

flowers and herbs in hydroponic towers
Flowers and herbs in hydroponic towers

How Do You Build A Hydroponic Tower?

Step 1: Construction on the Tower Pillar

  • Take a 4-inch PVC pipe and cut two lengths—one at 6 feet and the other at 4 inches.
  • Draw four evenly spaced lines around the 6 ft. 4-inch PVC pipe using your ruler. After drawing the first line, use your tape measure to set the distance between the following three lines at 3 1/2 inches.
  • Mark the locations for the holes you will drill in the net cups using your tape measure. Mark the holes on the first line at a distance of 5 inches from the pipe’s top, with the remaining holes spaced 15 inches, 25 inches, 35 inches, and 45 inches apart.
  • Mark the first net cup hole on the second line at 10 inches from the pipe’s top and the following holes at 20, 30, 40, and 50 inches.
  • The third line’s net cup holes should match those on the first line, and the fourth line’s holes should match those on the second line.

Step 2: Work On The Cup Holders For The Net

  • Cut 20 net cup holders from 1 1/2-inch PVC pipe.
  • With a 1 1/2 cm space in between, the cup holder should be cut with a 45-degree angle on one end and a straight or 12-degree angle on the other. Make 20 pieces and their holders.
  • One net cup holder should be centered on the hole marks on the 4-inch PVC pipe by drawing a mark in the middle of the cup holder’s 45-degree cut side.
  • Trace the cup holder’s outline on the 4-inch PVC pipe by lining up the marks. For the other net cup holder hole markings, repeat this procedure. The pipe’s bottom is indicated by the 45-degree cut.
  • Drill holes large enough to fit a jigsaw blade before cutting along the lines of each of the 20 hole markings to create the holes.
  • To make the margins of the holes smoother, lightly sand them.

Step 3: Attach The Cup Holders With Glue To The Tower Pillar

  • Apply PVC solvent liberally to the outside of the cup holders and the inner rim of the holes on the 4-inch pipe.
  • The holders should be inserted into the 4-inch holes and adjusted to fit securely without any gaps. To make the cup holders adhere to the 4-inch pipe, press them with a piece of wood.
  • Apply extra PVC solvent to the outside, allow the wood to sit for a while, and then remove it.
  • Apply your aquarium-safe silicone to seal everything in after all of the holders have been adhered, and then wait at least 24 hours for it to dry.

Step 4: Build The Reservoir

  • Trace the 5-inch PVC square with the inside of your 4-inch PVC collar. Next, trace the center of the PVC square with the 1/2-inch tubing.
  • Drill a 1/2-inch hole so the tubing will fit snuggly after cutting out the circular from the PVC square.
  • Drill roughly 20 1/8-inch holes randomly on the lid, then quickly sand them.
  • Drill two holes in your 5-gallon bucket, and then use two bolts and nuts to fasten the PVC bracket to the bucket. Make sure the top of the bucket has room to close.
  • Measure the distance between the 4-inch PVC pipe and the inner rim of the bucket with the bracket holding the pipe in place.
  • Place the 4-inch pipe on one lid; using your jigsaw, trace the outline and cut out the 4-inch circular.
  • To make the second lid fit tightly inside the bucket, trim the edges off of it. Retrace the four-inch pipe’s path. Take off the lid.
  • Cut out the 4-inch circle with a jigsaw. This will aid in securing the pipe within the bucket and prevent it from toppling.

Step 5: Put Your Hydroponic Tower Together

  • Attach your 4-inch PVC collar with glue to the pipe’s top.
  • Place your pump into the reservoir while holding the 4-inch PVC in the bucket, then note the location of the tubing exit. At the bottom of the 4-inch PVC, drill a few additional holes after cutting out the initial hole.
  • The 1/2-inch barbed tee should be inserted into the horse tubing after the poly tubing has been threaded through the PVC cover’s 1/2-inch hole.
  • Put the 4-inch collar’s 4-inch PVC collar into place.
  • For the electrical cord and the air horse tubing, make a small nick in the bucket rim.
  • Put your tower on the second lid at the bottom of the bucket by passing it through the bracket, first lid, and second lid. After that, attach the tubing to your pump.
  • Run a test to look for leaks. Let the silicone dry for 24 hours if you need to reapply it.
  • Run the machine all night to make sure everything is right.

Step 6: Establish Your Plants

  • Add your nutrition solution to the bucket’s water supply.
  • Add hydroton to the 2-inch net cups after putting your seedlings within them to block out light and hold them in place.

What Is The Easiest Plant To Grow Hydroponically?

There is no dirt involved with hydroponically grown plants. The nutrients plants require are directly absorbed by their roots from the water or soilless growing medium. It results in more fruitful gardening since it increases the efficiency with which plants absorb nutrients. 

In comparison to conventional soil gardening, hydroponic systems typically result in higher fruit and vegetable yields from plants. You may create your DIY hydroponic garden that is quick and inexpensive. Plants can be added once your garden is prepared. 

Plants That Are Easiest To Grow Hydroponically:

  • Leafy greens – lettuce, kale, spinach, bok choy, watercress
  • Herbs – chives, basil, mint, cilantro
  • Beans – green beans, pinto, lima
  • Tomatoes (require lots of light)
  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Scallions
  • Peppers
  • Spinach
  • Radish

Similar Posts