NFT (Nutrient Film Technique)

This method is the simplest of all ways of growing hydroponically and is the one I use

most in my own growing.

This system involves allowing a shallow film of nutrient solution (This is Water with nutrients added) to flow past the roots of your plants. The solution is usually pumped from a holding tank to the end of channels where it then flows over the roots before falling back into the holding tank.

This process is usually run continuously throughout the day,
It is not usually necessary to run the process through the night.

A setup like the one shown above can be made more advanced by adding an automatic topup system, This will allow the Holding tank to fill itself up automatically when it starts to go empty.
An examply of this can be seen on my Greenhouse pages, Where one of my greenhouses is fitted with a automatic topup system from a pre-filled water butt.
Plants can be placed into the channel at any state of growth as long as a good healthy roots are present, If they are the plant can simply be placed into the channel’s flow of nutrients.A Spreader matt is usually placed on the channel floor to allow an equal distribution of nutrients across the floor of the channel.

Ebb & Flood systems

This method is more complicated, It is also a system which I have not tried for real yet. But I’ve detailed it here for completeness.

It involves flooding your plant table with nutrient solution for a set time. The nutrient solution is then allowed to Ebb away back into the holding tank. Now a delay occurs and the routine begins again.

This system requires more equipment than NFT, Including a Timer and something to allow the Ebb to occur.

This system is sometimes used where a more decorative system is needed, As pebbles can be placed between the plants on the table.