Houseplant Hydroculture
Growing Houseplants Without Soil

Houseplant Hydroculture Frequently Asked Questions

My plants roots are growing through the drainage holes of the pot, what do I do?

This is very common in hydroculture. When this happens to my plants I remove them from the pot and place them in a larger pot, trying to avoid tearing or damaging the roots.

What type of pot should I use?

I personally use normal plastic plant pots with drainage holes in the base. Some plastic orchid pots are also good as these sometimes have drainage holes in the base and around the edge near the base.

The growing medium has turned white on the top of the pot, what is this?

This may be salt build-up. If it is salts then it will probably have a crystalline look, to treat this I shower the plant and growing medium as explained in the aftercare section on my home page.

What do I do with my plants while I'm on holiday?

I use the extended water method described on my home page.

I have seen plants growing in glass beads, is this possible?

The glass beads are probably not the growing medium. The growing medium is usually an aggregate such as the one described on my home page. I have seen these myself and the beads were top dressing.

Can I grow orchids in hydroculture?

I have never tried this myself but there are quite a few websites detailing orchid hydroculture.

What is the best plant to start off with?

It's a bit difficult to specify a species of plant to try when first starting hydroculture. I used and still do use cheap, commonly available, easy to grow house plants but what is cheap and commonly available here might not be the same as what is cheap, commonly available and easy to grow house plants in your country.

Can you grow more than one type of plant in the same pot?

Yes, it is possible to make a display pot of several different types of plants. I tend to pick plants that have similar requirements.

Should I use rainwater to water my hydroculture plants?

I prefer not to as rainwater can pick up pollutants from the atmosphere and also from the vessel it is captured in. I use tapwater which has been allowed to stand until it has reached room temperature.

I don't have a local hydroculture stockist, where can I get supplies from?

I usually search the internet for hydroculture or hydroponics suppliers, many of these suppliers offer mail order services. Although hydroponics is different from hydroculture they often use the same basic materials such as expanded clay pebbles. I always check with the manufacturer to see if their products are suitable for indoor houseplant hydroculture.

Can I re-use the clay pebbles?

I personally don't like doing this as I am worried that they may have picked up contaminants, I prefer to use fresh every time. If there are clay pebbles trapped in the root ball when I transfer the plant to a larger pot, which there usually is, then I leave them in there as I don't want to damage the roots or disturb the plant too much.

Can I use houseplant food instead of nutrient solution?

I prefer not to as houseplant food may not contain all the elements that plants in hydroculture require. I always use a nutrient solution designed for hydroculture.

Design by Nicolas Fafchamps
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