The Ultimate Guide to Getting Started with Aeroponic Systems

Aeroponic Systems

Emma Downey

Emma Downey
Gardening Expert

Updated on 12/4/2022

Would you like to cultivate plants without having to worry about soil quality? While also conserving water? Aeroponics might be exactly what you're looking for.

Continue reading to learn more about this alternative to traditional agriculture and investigate several aeroponic systems.

Definition of Aeroponics

Aeroponics is the process of growing plants without the need for soil or any growing medium in a damp, foggy environment.

It's a hydroponics innovation that's been around for decades. It's more advanced than most hydroponics systems in terms of technology.

The term "aeroponic" comes from the Greek words aer (air) and ponos (power) (labor). As you'll see, it's one of the least time-consuming ways to cultivate plants.

schematic of aeroponic system

What is the Function of an Aeroponic System?

An aeroponic system provides nutrients directly to the plant's roots. The plant is not held in place by any grow medium. The roots, on the other hand, remain hanging in mid-air.

Sounds odd, right? That is not the case! The fundamental principles are outlined below.

  • Aeroponics involves placing plants on a platform with holes or net pots.
  • Support collars keep the stems in place while allowing the roots to expand.
  • The platform is built on top of a water and nutrient reservoir.
  • Sprinklers attached to a water pump spray vapor at regular intervals over the roots.
  • The vapor carries an exact amount of nutrients, water, and growth hormones.
  • A timer controls the spray intervals and duration.
  • The plant absorbs the fertilizer spray and oxygen.

the workings of Aeroponics

Because the roots are neither buried in soil nor submerged in water, they receive more oxygen than in a hydroponic system. As a result, Plant growth is accelerated by improved root oxygenation.

Hydroponics vs Aeroponics

Aeroponics is technically a form of hydroponics, so they're frequently combined. However, there are a few major distinctions between an aeroponic and a hydroponic system. Find them right now.

Setup

Both systems need a pump and a reservoir, and a timer in some cases. At first view, they appear to be the same.

On the other hand, Aeroponics keeps the plants safe while exposing their roots to the air. Net pots or boards with slats or holes are used, and the roots are never submerged in an aeroponics system.

Delivery of Nutrients

The roots of the plants grow in a nutrient-rich mist in Aeroponics, and a timer-controlled pump sprays the roots at regular intervals.

On the other hand, in a hydroponic system, the roots remain in the water or another growing medium. Instead of a wet environment, Aeroponics creates a humid, fog-like one.

Diagram of Aeroponics and hydroponics

Hydroponics systems' effectiveness

The mist flow of an aeroponic system can cause nutrient and pH levels in the water to fluctuate. It's not a catastrophe; however, it necessitates more frequent testing than a hydroponics system.

On the other side, delivering nutrients to the plant demands less water, and Aeroponics uses less water than hydroponics when correctly set up.

Aeroponics also promotes faster development by exposing the plant to more oxygen.

Cycles

Water and fertilizer cycles are longer in hydroponics systems. On the other hand, Aeroponics systems shower the plants more frequently to avoid dry roots.

This means that Aeroponics must run on a precise timer for good plant development. If the timer fails, that's a disaster!

So, what's the takeaway from this comparison?

Bottom Line: Aeroponic systems are more energy efficient than hydroponic ones, requiring more technical knowledge. They don't deliver if they aren't adjusted appropriately.

Aeroponics System Types

Low or high pressure can be used in aeroponic systems, which distinguishes essential from complex installations. Let's take a closer look at the many configurations available.

Aeroponics with Low Pressure (LPA)

The majority of newcomers begin with a low-pressure aeroponics system. A pump, sprinklers, a reservoir, and a platform for the plants with an enclosed root chamber are all used in this system.

aeroponics with low pressure

This device produces water droplets larger than 50 microns, which is roughly the size of human hair.

LPA systems are simple to set up and handle a wide range of plant species. They're reasonably priced in most hydroponic stores.

If you're just beginning to start, LPA is a good option.

Pros

Cons

  • Only for small-scale use
  • It could not be strong enough for plants that need a lot of nutrients.

Aeroponics with High Pressure (HPA)

Water is atomized below 50 microns in high-pressure Aeroponics. The small droplet size allows for more oxygen to reach the root zone, boosting plant growth and enhancing nutrient delivery.

A large pump and specialized sprinklers are required for HPA systems. Furthermore, you must correctly configure them to function effectively, which is the system most commercial aeroponics users choose.

Pros

  • Root oxygenation is improved.
  • It efficiently delivers nutrients.

Cons

  • Some technical knowledge is required.
  • It can be costly to set up.

Aeroponics with Ultrasonic Fogger (Fogponics)

The ultrasonic fogger aeroponics (fogponics) atomizes water below 5 microns, creating fog. That's well below the threshold for visibility, and it's even more compact than a red blood cell.

The droplets are so minute that they are less likely to harm even young and delicate roots. It's no surprise that seedlings, clonings, and herbs thrive in fogponics.

system diagram for fogponics

 

In principle, the smaller the droplets, the easier it is for the plants to absorb water. Fogponics, on the other hand, necessitates the purchase of costly equipment.

It also necessitates meticulous maintenance to guarantee that the high-pressure pump functions properly. Additionally, fogponics necessitates additional declogging.

Pros

  • Plant roots are well protected.
  • Makes cloning in Aeroponics simple.
  • Nutrient density is high.

Cons

  • The accumulation of salt needs regular cleaning.
  • The atomizer can heat the reservoir.
  • Power outages are a possibility.

What Can You Grow in an Aeroponic Environment?

Almost every plant can be grown in theory. However, keep in mind that various plants have varying nutrient requirements in practice. Furthermore, not all plants thrive in damp environments.

Seedlings

Aeroponics is an excellent method for cultivating seedlings. Why? Because these plants have delicate roots that hydroponic or aquaponic systems may damage, and Aeroponic systems softly sprinkle the roots, inflicting no harm.

Clonings

Clones lack a well-developed root system, which makes supplying them with nourishment difficult.

cloning-seedlings

 

Cloning is simple with Aeroponics since the small droplet size feeds the roots without harming them.

Herbs

Herbs grow more quickly than vegetables or flowers and require fewer nutrients. As a result, herbs flourish in aeroponics systems. Basil, mint, and chives are among the best herbs for Aeroponics.

Vegetables

Green veggies work well in Aeroponics. Other vegetables, however, can be grown. The following is a list of veggies that you can grow:

  • Lettuce
  • Kale
  • Spinach
  • Cucumber
  • Eggplant
  • Tomato

Fruits

Is it possible to cultivate fruits aeroponically? You certainly can. Here are some suggestions:

  • Strawberries
  • Watermelon
  • Pear
  • Plum

Flowers

Aeroponics can be used to cultivate annual flowers but not perennials in general. This is because perennials require soil-based beneficial bacteria and fungi.

  • Carnation
  • Roses
  • Orchid
  • Geraniums in zones

Finally, how much you can grow using Aeroponics is determined by your setup, the nutrients you employ, and how well you optimize your system.

The Most Effective Aeroponics Systems

Buying a ready-made system is the quickest way to get started with Aeroponics. LPA systems work with various plants and offer low operating costs.

Consider how much space you have while choosing a design. For example, tower aeroponics systems use vertical space to expand the growing area.

With in-depth reviews and critical features, learn about some of the top aeroponic systems available.

Cloning System TurboKlone T24D

TurboKlone T24D aeroponics cloning system

Aeroponic cloning is a quick and easy method. Even if you don't plan to grow many plants, you might want to attempt this method of cloning. This configuration takes up little room, making it ideal for tiny spaces.

Cleaning is also a breeze, thanks to the rounded shape. It also features a fan to keep the system cool and prevent the water temperature from rising.

Key Features

  • 24 plant locations in a compact design
  • During prolonged operation, the fan and shroud avoid overheating.
  • Protection from humidity

Product to be added

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Aeroponic Cloner Machine Psycloner Pro

cloning machine for aeroponics Pro Psycloner

This aeroponics cloner is a hassle-free alternative for large-scale home cloning, with room for 140 plants. It creates a robust and reliable system by applying aeroponic principles.

The bright plant locations make it simple to distinguish between different plants. A germination kit is included in the box, which is quite helpful.

Another advantage is the folding humidity dome, which helps to reduce transplant shock. The system is very simple to disassemble and clean.

Key Features

  • 140 plant locations
  • Germination kit for cutting and rooting
  • Humidity dome that folds

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Indoor Aeroponic System by Aerospring

Aerospring tower aeroponics indoor system

Don't be fooled by the word "hydroponic" in the name. This vertical aeroponic tower garden is ideal for herbs, leafy greens, and vegetables.

Aeroponic towers save space, and they will work in almost any home, including apartments. This system serves as an excellent example.

Up to 27 plants can be grown in the 10-square-foot growing space. That may imply up to three servings per day if you're raising kids. Isn't that good?

The sleek design, built-in lights, and tent covers for speeding up growth add to its attractiveness.

Key Features

  • Vertically compact design
  • Faster growth with tent coverings
  • Controlling airflow

Aerospring 27 Plant Vertical Hydroponics Indoor
Our Opinion 🤔
Easy to use10
Easy to use
Value for money9.4
Value for money
For beginners9.2
For beginners
Easy to assemble8
Easy to assemble

Vertical Herb & Vegetable Garden by Aerospring

Aerospring tower aeroponics outdoor system

This tiny aeroponics tower garden from the same company was made to be used outside. On a balcony, terrace, patio, or covered area in your garden, you can grow up to 27 plants.

However, take in mind that it does not include a light source, and that means you'll need to put it somewhere where your plants will get enough sunlight.

Also, keep in mind that various plants may require varying amounts of light. Place the plants that need the most sunlight on top to maximize their exposure to the sun.

Key Features

  • Integration of a mobile app to regulate lighting and watering
  • LED grow lamps built-in
  • Works outside

DIY Aeroponic Systems

Any of the systems listed above are excellent places to start. However, you can build your DIY aeroponics system.

You can then tailor it to your requirements. Aeroponics farming can be done your way.

To get you started, here are some tutorials.

Low-Pressure Aeroponics System with Two Buckets

This DIY aeroponics project may be ideal for you to start small and keep things simple. Two 5-gallon buckets, misting nozzles, and PVC spray bars are essential components.

Some of these items are likely to already be in your garage. To get it up and running, follow the steps in this video by Peter Stanley. It will be quick!

inexpensive low-pressure aeroponic system

Cloning Tote Box for Low-Pressure Aeroponics

You can also construct your aeroponics cloning system with many plant sites. A 27-gallon construction-grade storage container, pipes and fittings, and sprayers are required.

Here's how to do it—it should only take an hour or two to complete.

Build Aeroponic Cloner 35 Sites to Root

Aeroponics Garden Automation

You can make a DIY aeroponics garden with an ultrasonic fogger if you have some spare time. Watch as these bright teenagers explain the system's principles.

This system is quite flexible. You can change it to fit your space better and add or remove plant spots as needed.

Get Your Ponics Game On

Aeroponics is about more than just growing plants faster. It's a method of figuring out what plants require to survive and then using that information to create ideal conditions.

It's also about maximizing space, conserving water, and decreasing physical labor.

You don't even need to engage in large-scale aeroponics farming to get the benefits.

The beauty and efficiency of this activity are captured in a tiny home aeroponics setup. Aeroponically cultivating plants is, in the end, a method to live a greener, healthier life.

So, what do you have to lose? Get started right away!

FAQs On Aeroponics

Every week, we receive many reader questions on hydroponics, aquaponics, and aeroponics systems, so we decided to compile a list of the most frequently asked questions about these systems.

Frequently Asked Questions