A crop that uses an aeroponic method relies on mist and air to grow rather than soil. It’s an inventive way to avoid aggregates that traditional agriculture methods require. Each plant receives nutrient-rich moisture through a spritz to its roots. This practice allows growers to create a flexible, mobile garden wherever they please.
Do you want to learn more about this eco-friendly alternative? Take a look at the pros and cons of aeroponics.
The Pros of Aeroponics
This technique serves as a sustainable way for farmers and gardeners to manage their crops. It produces healthier, fuller plants that don’t take much effort to harvest. It’s also an effective alternative for those who want to save water. Aeroponics doesn’t require fertilizers or pesticides, so it’s more beneficial environmentally and financially. There’s much to be said about a system that provides these advantages.
Here are a few pros to consider.
1. Enhances Crop Growth
An aeroponic setup creates bigger and better crops. That’s because it allows each plant’s roots to have enough oxygen and nutrients. A traditional agriculture method uses soil to produce crops over a lengthened period. While many plants can survive this way, it’s much easier for them to thrive when they have space to breathe. Additionally, they canreceive food directly rather than through soil.
Your plants will mature quickly and become healthier. You’ll even be able to see more than you normally would with conventional methods. Because aeroponics requires little space, it’s easier to cultivate several plants at once. This alternative practice leads to higher yields that look and taste terrific. In fact, this process grows plants 30% bigger than traditional crops.
2. Makes Harvests Simpler
Those who follow traditional agriculture methods must till and plant crops every spring. This isn’t always easy. Many farmers often face headaches when they have to deal with unforeseen events like broken equipment or harsh weather. Because agriculture works as an extractive process, it’s difficult to manage the same land plots throughout every season. Eventually, they’ll become unusable.
Aeroponic growers don’t have to worry about much other than their crops. It’s simple to replace old plants with new ones when necessary. Plus, they don’t have to think about eventual soil problems. They simply collect their yields and replant when necessary. As a result, it’s possible to maintain various crops throughout every season — and harvests become less complicated and more accessible.
3. Prevents Water Waste
Conventional methods rely on excessive water use to grow and sustain crops. An aeroponic setup requires almost none at all. It’s even more water-conscious than hydroponics. It can reduce water use by 98% when appropriately maintained. That’s because aeroponic plants only need mist and air to thrive. As a positive outcome, there’s little runoff to contribute to water waste.
The Cons of Aeroponics
While aeroponics creates many advantages for farmers, it’s not without its faults. Because traditional agriculture methods have existed for centuries, it’s become easier for growers to find alternative ways to plant and develop their crops.
There isn’t much flexibility with aeroponic techniques. It’s essential to have a specific and pricey setup to maintain proper growth. It’s also not as worry-free as some people may think. You still need to pay attention to your crops as they mature. It may be easier to harvest, but it’s a method that demands close supervision.
Here’s a look at a few cons.
1. Needs Expensive Setup
Those who know a lot about aeroponics may be able to create their own system with DIY methods. This endeavor wouldn’t cost more than a few hundred dollars, but it’s impossible to pursue unless you’re thoroughly knowledgeable. As a result, it’s common for beginners to buy aeroponic setups from retailers. That equipment could cost more than $10,000 with specific modifications.
While that’s still less than it’d cost to buy and build a farm, it’s a consideration many small-time farmers and gardeners have to make. Plus, you’d need ample indoor space to house your plants year-round. You’d be able to use this area more effectively than conventional methods allow — and that’s a decent trade-off. However, the price factor could be a dealbreaker for some growers.
Requires Frequent Care
An aeroponic farmer has to pay attention to small details. This process grows plants automatically — but there’s a lot more to it. You have to monitor and maintain each plant’s pH and nutrition levels. You also need to watch for mold and fungi growth due to constant moisture. It can be tricky to figure out how much food plants should receive. That’s why many experts recommend beginners educate themselves beforehand.
New Growers Should Consider the Pros and Cons of Aeroponics
These examples are incredibly relevant pros and cons of aeroponics. Mostly, it’s up to you to determine whether you should pursue this technique. It’s proven to be a green alternative to traditional agriculture — but that doesn’t mean there aren’t a few downsides. Consider these points before you explore this method.