Deep Water Culture Technique

Deep Water Culture Technique

The hydroponic method of plant production by means of suspending the plant roots in a solution of nutrient-rich, oxygenated water.

Traditional methods favor the use of plastic buckets and large containers with the plant contained in a net pot suspended from the center of the lid and the roots suspended in the nutrient solution.

With this method, the plants grow much faster because of the high amount of oxygen that the roots receive.

The solution is oxygen saturated from an air pump combined with porous stones.

With this method, the plants grow much faster because of the high amount of oxygen that the roots receive.

Related: CO2 Enrichment In Hydroponics

So What Is Deep Water Culture Technique?

This method is called Deep Water Culture for two reasons.  One, you typically grow with a reservoir that can hold a decent amount of water.

More water means more stability in your nutrient solution, which means less monitoring and maintenance for you!

The second reason is because of how much of the root mass you submerge in the water.

Related: Hydroponic Food Production

Deep Water Culture Technique
Deep Water Culture Technique (Source)

Other methods expose your plant’s root zone to air and drench them in water just a few times a day like ebb and flow systems.

In deep water culture, most of your plant’s root system is submerged 24/7 – hence the name!

In the Deep Water Culture system, a plant’s roots are suspended in a well-oxygenated solution composed of water and nutrients.

There are three parts of this system:

  • Oxygen: Because the roots are submerged in water and not soil (which has gaps and holes where air resides), the water needs to be well oxygenated so the plant doesn’t drown.
  • Water: Think of this system as if you’re growing in soil and permanently watering your plants – this is one of the reasons growing hydroponically is so beneficial – you never need to ‘water’ again.
  • Nutrients: A good quality soil contains all of the micro and macronutrients that a plant needs to survive and thrive.  

Related: RoyalsellPro Hydroponics Growing System Review

What Are The Benefits of Deep Water Culture Technique?

Deep Water Culture Technique
Deep Water Culture Technique (Source)
  • It is the simplest type of system to start with.
  • The only system that is simpler is a wicking system.
  • Very low maintenance once you set it up
  • Extremely fast-growing time compared to soil (I’ve grown lettuce to harvest in 30 days instead of 60 in soil)
  • Very little moving parts and assembly

Disadvantages Of Deep Water Culture Technique

Of course there are some cons of this growing system:

  • In small systems, pH, water level, and nutrient concentration may fluctuate wildly
  • In small systems, the opportunity to over or under calibrate is VERY easy due to small scale
  • If you have an electricity outage or a pump failure, your roots may “drown” in low-oxygen nutrient solution
  • It can be difficult to maintain a consistent water temperature
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