Last Updated on October 30, 2022 by Cinthia
Growing plants that produce fruits may not be quite easy with hydroponics, especially for beginners. This is so because of the required intensive work inputs and necessary maintenance. However, that is not the case when it comes to growing strawberries with hydroponic.
Strawberries cultivated in hydroponics do well and can yield abundant fruits all through the year. It is one of the easiest fruits one can grow with hydroponics. Let’s dive in and discuss some facts about growing strawberries with hydroponic.
Strawberry is a healthy food people love and the demand for it keeps increasing day by day. This is why farmers are designing various ways to meet market demands.
A hydroponic farming system is one method you can use to cultivate strawberries fast and easy. For this reason, farmers prefer to cultivate their strawberry plants using hydroponics from runners.
Growing Strawberries with Hydroponic
One popular fruit to grow is the strawberries. Growing strawberries from their seeds with soil can take 2 to 3 years to mature. But when it comes to growing strawberries in hydroponics, it is fast and easy.
The hydroponic system makes use of water solutions in which nutrients have been dissolved to grow plants. The method is fast, healthy, and will result in an abundant production of fruits.
Getting Started: Growing Strawberries with Hydroponic
Of course, the very first thing you need to do is to purchase a hydroponic system. You can either make use of a vertical hydroponic system or a hydroponic kit. However, a vertical hydroponic system will give you more space for growing and maximum yield.
Next thing is to choose if you want to grow your strawberry from a seed or a young strawberry plant.
The best way is to use a young strawberry plant and plant them in the net holes of your hydroponics system. You will need to rinse off the soil from the young strawberry plants and insert them into the net holes of the hydroponic system. Fill them with nutrient-rich water for hydroponics afterward.
Read about Vertical Hydroponics System
Next, you want to feed your strawberry with some proper light and adequate temperature. It is essential you provide adequate light to your strawberry plants so they can flourish and grow well. The temperature strawberry plants like is around 65 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Feed your strawberry plant with 8 to 10 hours of light daily. If you decide to grow your plants in a greenhouse, then your strawberry plants can obtain their light naturally. However, if they will be grown indoors, grow light will be needed to feed your strawberry plant with the needed light.
Quality of Water
Another important thing is water quality. Since the main ingredient providing nutrients is in the water, ensure you make use of a water filter instead of tap water. This way, you reduce the risk of introducing impurities to your plant water.
The pH levels of your nutrient-filled water should range between 5.8 to 6.2. Use a pH meter to know the status of your pH level.
Now to the medium used. Although there are various mediums available to be used, we suggest you use a simple, affordable, and available medium like coco coir. Coco coir is inactive and won’t interfere with the pH or nutrient level of your strawberry plant.
When it comes to pollination, it is a key concern and must be planned. Strawberry plants possess both male and female flowers. Pollination is different in the outdoor and indoor hydroponic systems of strawberries. Outdoor hydroponic strawberry pollination is done by wind and bees. On the other hand, indoor pollination is done artificially by using a fan or gently brushing your hands along the flowers of the strawberry plants.
Benefits of Growing Strawberries with Hydroponics
There are lots of benefits of growing strawberries with hydroponics. Here are a couple of these benefits:
- The Soil-based Disease Reduced: since there is no soil used, there is no room for soil-based pests, microorganisms, or pathogens to thrive.
- Reduction in Use of pesticides: the need for pesticides and insecticides spraying on your strawberries fruits are reduced. This way, you enjoy fresh and healthy fruit production.
- Fast Growth and Plenty Yield: using a hydroponic system for strawberries gives a quick yield and abundant production all year round.
Do strawberries do well in hydroponics?
Yes, strawberries do well in hydroponics. The trick is to choose the right nutrients for your system. They have shallow roots and are very sensitive to nutrient deficiencies. When I grew them in a hydroponic system, I had to fertilize the plants every two weeks.
For example, you need a good source of phosphorus for healthy roots. You also need calcium and potassium, which are more available in nutrient solutions than in soil. Also, you want a good source of nitrogen. Strawberries have shallow roots that grow into the medium in which they're planted. If you put them in a hydroponic system, you need to provide some type of medium in which to grow the roots. For example, you could use sand, perlite, or peat moss.
When can you give strawberries their nutrients in a hydroponic system?
With a hydroponic system, you can provide all the nutrients that your plants need right from the start. For strawberries, you want a medium that will hold moisture and nutrients without getting soggy. Strawberries are shallow rooted, and they like a loose medium.
This means that you can just sprinkle the medium over the strawberries. You don't have to worry about keeping it evenly moist. If you're using sand or perlite, you can make the medium by mixing the sand or perlite with enough water to get it to the consistency you want.
How do you make sure they get enough nitrogen?
There are three ways you can get nitrogen into the plant:
1. Use a foliar spray,
2. Feed your plants with a liquid fertilizer, or
3. Grow the plant on a medium that contains nitrogen.
A foliar spray is simply water with a small amount of fertilizer mixed in. The fertilizer will be absorbed by the leaves and then carried to the roots. Liquid fertilizers are similar to foliar sprays in that they provide nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. They also usually contain a little bit of iron and calcium as well.
What are the most important nutrients?
First, let's talk about why you might want to grow strawberries in a hydroponic system. You need a good source of phosphorus for healthy roots.
With a hydroponic system, you can get phosphorus right into the plant from the start. Second, you want a good source of potassium. Potassium is used to build strong cell walls in plants. If you don't provide a good source of potassium, the plant will have weak cell walls. You can get potassium from the soil, but it's not always available. You also need nitrogen. Nitrogen helps the plant make amino acids. These amino acids are needed to build proteins, which help the plant grow.
Strawberry fruit is one of people’s favorite and it might not be so easy to cultivate. It can take a lot of time to produce results from seed. But with a hydroponic strawberry system, it has becomes so simple for farmers to cultivate and meet people’s demands.