Hydroponics is a method of growing plants indoors or outdoors in nutrient-infused water. Vegetable plants such as tomatoes, pepper and herbs are commonly found growing indoors in a hydroponics system. Hydroponics gives the benefit of growing plants and vegetable during the winter months or in areas where it is too hot and dry. Beginner hydroponic gardeners will find the bubbler systems, also called deep water, or ebb and flow systems, easy to set up and use.
Purchase or make a hydroponics system. Assemble the system and run water through the tubing to make sure it is functioning properly.
Purchase plant seedlings that are 2 to 3 inches in height. Remove the plants from the container and gently dislodge the soil around the root ball. Rinse the plant roots with clean water to remove soil residue prior to planting in a hydroponics system.
Plant the soil-less plants in the hydroponics system by inserting the roots into rockwool cubes or netted pots filled with hydroponics medium. Place large growing plants 10 to 12 inches apart and small growing plants 6 to 8 inches apart in the hydroponics system.
Fill the hydroponics water reservoir with clean water. Test pH of the water to verify it is appropriate for the plants growing in the system. Many vegetable plants require an acidic water of 5.5 to 6.5. Amend the water by adding phosphoric acid to lower the pH or potassium hydroxide to raise the pH.
Mix water-soluble hydroponics nutrients into the water-filled reservoir according the package instructions for the volume of water in the reservoir. Monitor the water level and add more nutrients when refreshing water in the hydroponics system.
Place an indoor metal halide light system over hydroponics systems growing indoors. Vegetable plants grow best with long-day lengths of 14 to 16 hours.