In the hydroponic method, soil is not used and the roots of the plants are just suspended in liquid nutrient solutions or mixtures containing gravel and rockwool. In all cases, the containers are kept sealed, save for a tiny hole to insert the plant stem, so that growth of algae is prevented due to light falling on the roots.
By adapting the hydroponics technique, you enable plants to achieve a higher growth rate and yield more fruits as compared to traditional methods of planting. Hydroponics is also the ideal method when outdoor growing of chili plants is not the preferred option.
Other advantages of hydroponics include:
• More plants can be grown per foot as compared to conventional methods.
• It makes best use of moisture and nutrients and thus is more efficient than traditional methods.
• There is no problem of dealing with weeds.
• There is no worry of crops getting infected by soil borne disease.
• It is often more economic than conventional gardening.
• It is an easy and fun do-it-yourself project and a good alternative.
Static Solution Hydroponics
In this method, containers filled with static nutrient solution are used for growing plants. The solution is gently aerated with air pumps so that the roots get oxygen and stagnation is prevented. As with aquariums, in this case the solution is changed at least once a week, or adjusted so that a beneficial concentration of nutrients is maintained.
Continuous Flow Hydroponics
This method is more advanced than static solutions and is used in larger setups involving several plants. In this type, the solution is pumped continuously around the plant roots. The systems are also equipped with automated sampling and nutrient level adjustments.
Nutrient Film Technique
The Nutrient Film Technique is the most common of continuous flow type growing techniques. Here the plants roots are positioned in sealed narrow gully through which a shallow film of water is flowing. Such an approach supports a thick root system and also allows roots to access oxygen from above the water stream. This makes it the most efficient hydroponic nutrient method. However, the system can be delicate, causing starvation and death of plants on account of reduction of flow.