Hydroponics is a subset of normal practice of soil-based agriculture. By definition “Hydroponics is a way of growing plants in a nutrient-rich, water-based solution”. Simply put this is a method of growing plants without soil by using dissolved mineral nutrients in a water solvent. The roots of the plant are partially submerged in this solution and are provided with all the necessary nutrients that a plant needs to grow.
Under this technology, the use of soil is completely forfeited. The basic principle behind the technology is allowing plant roots to come into direct contact with the nutrient-rich solution, while still being able to sufficiently access oxygen which is vital for healthy growth and development of the plant. At its simplest, hydroponics is gardening without soil. If you give a plant exactly what it needs, when it needs it, in the amount that it needs, the plant will be as healthy as is genetically possible.
With hydroponics this is an easy task; in soil, it is far more difficult to control the conditions that the plant is exposed to. With this method of farming, it is possible to control all the necessary variables that a plant needs to grow strong and healthy. The plant is exposed to only the best conditions. Conditions like Temperature, PH, EC (Electrical Conductivity) and light exposure are constantly monitored to keep them at the prescribed levels for optimum growth.
If you grow two genetically identical plants using soil for one and hydroponics for the other, you will almost immediately see the difference these factors make. Faster, better growth and much greater yields are just some of the many reasons that hydroponics is being adapted around the world for commercial food production as well as a growing number of homes around the world by hobby gardeners