In recent years, the hydroponic growing method is being loved and studied by many people because of its benefits and convenience. In particular, growing vegetables with hydroponics can be more effective than planting directly in the ground.
Arugula is also a popular vegetable that many gardeners love to grow hydroponically. Arugula plants are grown directly in water so their roots will absorb all the nutrients in the water in the best way.
So, what are the great benefits of growing Arugula vegetables hydroponically? Let’s learn everything about the process and how to care for this vegetable when growing in water.
1. Why Should You Choose For Growing Arugula Hydroponically?
As you know, Arugula is a green leafy vegetable that contains many vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. This vegetable contains high levels of folic acid, and antioxidants like vitamins C, K, and A, so it is the ideal vegetable in the fight against free radicals.
In particular, arugula is being favored today because it is a good choice for dieters to have a healthy body, full of nutrients and focus when working.
Therefore, Arugula vegetables are more and more popular in every daily meal of every family. Furthermore, Arugula is a vegetable with a short harvest time of 30 to 45 days, so it can be grown year-round in a hydroponic environment providing a clean source of ingredients for a delicious salad for your family.
Arugula is exceptionally easy to grow with any hydroponic equipment you currently have, so it does not require complicated and expensive hydroponic growing equipment.
2. What Are The Advantages Of Growing Arugula Vegetables Hydroponically?
Growing Arugula vegetables hydroponically will bring more benefits and better yields than growing with conventional agricultural methods.
Greater productivity: You can build your hydroponic system anywhere you want. Growing Arugula vegetables with hydroponics will increase the yield by 3 to 10 times compared to planting seeds in the ground. The hydroponic method will help Arugula vegetables absorb the most nutrients in the water, and not lose them like when growing in the soil.
Temperature control: The hydroponic environment will help you control the temperature, light, and nutrients so that Arugula can grow all year round, so the hydroponic method will be many times more effective compared with traditional farming methods.
Faster growth rate: Most plants grown in soil will have a slower growth rate than hydroponically grown. Because the process of plants taking nutrients from the soil will take longer as well as insufficient sources of nutrients due to continuous drainage.
In general, the growth rate of plants in hydroponics will be 30 to 50% faster than with traditional methods. With a hydroponic system, nutrients will always be guaranteed for maximum absorption of Arugula vegetables and limit problems caused by pests, fungi, and bacteria in the soil environment.
Water-saving: Growing Arugula vegetables using hydroponics will save up to 20 times more water than conventional farming. This sounds ridiculous but it is true because the water in the hydroponic method will be recycled and reused.
Time-saving care: Growing Arugula vegetables by hydroponic method helps to save maximum care time such as watering, mulching, and killing pests, insects, fungi, and bacteria in the soil environment.
Limit environmental pollution: Since Arugula is grown in water, you won’t have to deal with backlog problems like dirty water, soil, sand, fertilizers, or pesticides.
Read more: Growing Vegetables in PVC Pipe: Yes or No?
3. What Are The Best Standards When Growing Arugula Vegetables Hydroponically?
Some of the ideal criteria for nutrients and timing to grow aquatic Arugula include:
- Nutrition: Grow Medium – Coco Coir is the most ideal source of nutrients when growing hydroponically
- Time to germinate: 7-10 days
- Harvest time: 30 to 45 days
- Ideal pH: 6.0 to 7.5 to ensure the dissolution of all nutrients in the aqueous medium
- Optimal Nutrient Mix: CaNO3, MgSO4, and NPK
- EC Range (Nutrient Strength): 0.8 to 1.4.
- PPM: 400-700
- Light: 12-18 hours
4. Which System For Growing Hydroponic Arugula Is Suitable?
Currently, you can refer to 2 methods of growing Arugula vegetables using Deep Water Culture (DWC) and Nutrient Film Technique (NFT) systems.
The Deep Water Culture (DWC) hydroponic system includes:
- Arugula seedlings are transplanted into a floating raft on a 6- to 12-inch pot with adequate nutrients.
- Use a pump to circulate water.
- An air pump with oxygen for underwater ventilation
Advantages of DWC:
- The easiest hydroponic system to start with
- Low maintenance cost
- The perfect environment for Arugula vegetables to grow extremely fast and for a shorter harvest time than usual
- Very few parts to assemble, simple movement
Nutrient Film Technique hydroponic system (NFT) includes:
- Arugula seedlings are grown in tubes or channels and are suspended just for easy contact with water for nutrients.
- Nutrient solution will be pumped up from the storage tank and then flows through the nutrient membranes to each tube containing Arugula saplings.
- Nutrients will be flowed evenly to each tube and then back to the storage tank and continue the same process.
Advantages of NFT:
- Simple system is favored by many people
- Nutrition is optimally provided to each young plant
- Young plants have the ideal distance to avoid pests
5. How To Manage Nutrients In Hydroponics?
Nutrient management in hydroponics is about using the nutrients in your water efficiently, avoiding waste, and polluting the environment.
In hydroponics, nutrient management is very important because you need to determine the right amount of nutrients for each vegetable. The nutritional issues you need to pay attention to are salt concentration, pH level, alkalinity, and nutrient concentration.
The pH factor in the hydroponic method is alkalinity mainly due to bicarbonate dissolved in the water source. Alkalinity can be altered frequently due to the reduction of mineral acids and varies depending on water quality. Therefore, you need to determine the alkalinity and pH level in the hydroponic medium at the ideal level of 6.0 to 7.5 to ensure the balance of nutrients in the water.
Fertilizer solutions help provide the right amount of nutrients for each type of plant in a hydroponic environment. Some signs you can easily recognize when Arugula has nutritional problems include:
Nitrogen (N): Arugula plants will have purple stems and yellow leaves at the same time if they are deficient in nitrogen. Arugula trees cannot grow in height and area as usual.
Phosphorus (P): A deficiency in phosphorus causes the leaves of Arugula to appear burgundy along the leaf margins. Seedlings are thinner and have fewer leaves.
Potassium (K): A lack of potassium will cause the leaves of the Arugula plant to gradually rot and appear denser 2 to 3 weeks later.
6. Steps To Grow Hydroponic Arugula
To grow Arugula vegetables by the hydroponic method you need to follow the steps below:
Step 1: You should sow the seeds and incubate the seeds on a thin cloth, soft towel, or thin paper to incubate the seeds and have a little moisture for the seeds to germinate. Select healthy seeds after incubation.
Step 2: Choose hydroponic mats such as coir mats and organic and biodegradable mats. Then you soak them in a container filled with water, wait for it to saturate, and place it in a hydroponic growing tray. Hydroponic growing mats should be 10 inches by 20 inches.
Step 3: Sprinkle Arugula seeds evenly on organic mats and mist them to provide moisture for early seeds to germinate.
Step 4: Cover the hydroponic growing tray and check once a day, limit the opening and installation of the hydroponic growing tray too many times, making it difficult for Arugula seeds to germinate. This step simulates Arugula seeds being sown in the ground and germinating under closed conditions.
Step 5: Check the growth of the seeds and mist once a day until germination. Then you will leave them in a place with light or light. Don’t forget to keep spraying them once a day until they are at least 1 inch.
Step 6: Once the Arugula seedlings have started to develop, you should provide adequate light every day to stimulate photosynthesis and can harvest the first leaves in 7 to 14 days.
Growing Arugula vegetables by hydroponics method is a reasonable and effective choice for smart gardeners. The hydroponic growing method helps to increase productivity, save care time, limit environmental pollution, and save significant water resources.
Currently, you can refer to 2 models of growing Arugula vegetables using deep water culture (DWC) and nutrient film technique (NFT). Two methods have the advantages of simple, fast operation and low installation cost.
Hope you will have more useful information on how to grow Arugula vegetables hydroponically in this article. Let’s enjoy the delicious salad with Arugula vegetables with signature flavor!