Food For Thought


Kayla Sheely, 08/05/2014

Hydroponics: A New Way to Farm

While hydroponic farming has been around for hundreds – possibly even thousands of years – it’s not well understood by most people. Once you understand the sustainability and value of hydroponic farming, it’s easy to become an avid fan.

Hydroponics is a type of controlled environmental agriculture that allows greater control over how plants are grown than traditional agriculture does. Indoor, hydroponic farms can regulate the temperature, humidity, nutrients, and lighting to create the ideal growing environment.   

The basis of hydroponic farming is that plants are grown in water instead of soil. In traditional agriculture, soil just serves as the medium for plants to uptake the nutrients it needs. By eliminating soil from the growing process then, no nutrients are lost. All of the necessary nutrients are fed into the water allowing the plant roots to absorb the nutrients directly.

Although unfamiliar to many people, indoor, hydroponic farming has some great benefits. Here are just a few:

  • Plants are grown without any pesticides, herbicides or GMOs. Since an indoor farm naturally protects from many of the pests, the need for sprayed chemicals is eliminated.
  • Produce is fresh and has high nutritional value. Many plants lose up to 30% of their nutritional value in the first three days after harvest, so indoor farms near urban centers can eliminate long delivery times and get produce to consumers’ hands quicker.
  • Indoor hydroponic farms have the capability to grow year round.
  • Instead of finding new arable land, hydroponic farms can utilize unused warehouses in urban centers to keep greens close to our community.

VEG-E Systems is an indoor hydroponic farm based in Doylestown, PA, that is currently supplying Bucks County with fresh greens year-round. If you want to learn more about hydroponics or to sign up for a tour of the indoor farm, visit 

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