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Hydroponics is a method of gardening that skips soil, requiring only water and nutrients to grow plants. There was a time when hydroponics was considered a fringe alternative way to grow food, but the movement toward sustainable living has brought hydroponics into the mainstream. There are even hydroponic gardening classes for children. Growing your own food, even if it’s just a handful of plants, is satisfying. For individuals who aren’t afraid to go into it with full gear to those who prefer a simple first try, there are plenty of options.

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1. Beginners should consider the Kratky method

The Kratky method is considered the most straightforward way for beginners to get the hang of hydroponics because it is a hands-free system that doesn’t require a pump or electricity. All you need to get started is a 5-gallon bucket and a liquid solution that contains all of the nutrients your plant of choice needs for its entire life cycle. Place your seedling on a raft over the solution so that its roots dip into the solution. Over time, this closed system will provide adequate water and air to the roots, and all it requires is a quick initial setup.

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