Hydroponics Helps Gardeners Battle Drought
The sound of water has been rare in the Midwest this summer. But inside Kreations Indoor Gardening Center, what's happening outside doesn't affect the way things grow inside.
"If you are in a drought, it's a lot easier for you to grow them indoors
where you control how hot it gets, you control how much light it gets
and you control the water situation," Brandy Chrisman, owner of Kreations, said.
It's called hydroponics: growing plants in water without soil. Chrisman said with hydroponics, there is 70 percent better growth.
"In your root systems, better overall vegetative growth, and blooming growth," said Chrisman.
Chrisman said hydroponics is growing in popularity. Many times people just want to know where their food comes from.
"People are almost afraid to buy their vegetables and fruit from the store anymore," Chrisman said. "I, myself, every time I eat lettuce I get a little nervous. If you're growing it yourself, you know what's on it."
For those who have very little space to garden, hydroponics is a good fit.
"It can be a little bitty system, up to s big as you want it to be," said Chrisman.
Another option for indoor gardening is aquaponics.
"You have a fish tank or any kind of reservoir that holds fish," Chrisman said. "You can do float and grow trays on the top of it. You put the plants that you want on the top of the float and grow tray and basically they are fertilized by the fish."
For gardeners in Central Illinois who battle an abundance of clay in their dirt, the soil-less aspect of hydro and aquaponics is a draw.
"You could still get vegetables, and beautiful flowers and fruits indoors and still get to enjoy that for people who love gardening," Chrisman said.
It's a love that can bloom all year long.
Chrisman said hydroponics is perfect for those gardeners who like tropical plants. Kreations has several of them indoors, including both a papaya tree and coconut tree.