Liberate Your Roots! Take The Plunge & Grow In Water

Hydroponically grown TomatoesCompetitive & adventurous gardeners love growing in water with our Vivigrow,  Solar-Quadgrow and Rain & Drain Planters which use the hydroponic technique where plants are grown in water.

You can achieve typically 3-4x bigger yields by growing in water compared to soil-grow plants and your plants will be provided with superior access to oxygen, nutrients & water, so they grow faster, stronger and healthier.

Our soil-less planters are great for growing anything from tomatoes, chillies and cucumbers right through to growing your own exotic and tropical plants including some of our favourites, bananas and papaya.

Vivigrow Planter

The Vivigrow is a ‘hydroponic’ growing technique and our very own founder of Greenhouse Sensation was one of the pioneers of hydroponics. He developed the Vivigrow so that this technique of growing in water in a soil-less planter could be adapted for home/greenhouse use on a smaller scale.

The beauty of the Vivigrow planter is that the planter pumps a constant stream of water & nutrients over your plants’ roots, which encourages your plants to take up more water, nutrients and oxygen compared to if you were growing in soil. Watch our founder harvesting a mass of chillies grown in our 3 Plant Vivigrow Planter at the end of the growing season.

Rain & Drain Planter

Our Rain & Drain Tropical Planter has been designed by our horticulturists to replicate the watering & feeding conditions needed by tropical plants. The Rain & Drain Planters inclusive water timer ensures your tropical and exotic plants such as bananas, ginger and papaya are fed & watered several times a day without ever over-watering.

Pebbles are used in the planter instead of soil and a small pump waters the plants several times per day ensuring the plants have access to everything they need for stronger healthier plants and bumper harvests. Watch our founder breaking ginger harvest record.

Solar-Quadgrow Planter

The Solar Quadgrow is a super-charged version of our best-selling Quadgrow planter, we designed it for gardeners who want to grow huge harvests. Its combination of solar-powered drippers, FeederMats and super-airy alternative to compost (HydroCoco) – all work together to provide roots with lots of access to oxygen, water and nutrients resulting in 3-4 x bigger harvests. Watch our short video and see how this super-charged planter works.

The FeederMats keep the roots nourished in overcast conditions, and the solar-powered drippers provide extra bursts of water in response to the intensity of the light, so when it’s sunny the drippers provide more water than when it’s overcast. Whatever water the roots don’t take-up quickly drains back into the Quadgrow reservoir.

This combination of excellent oxygen access and light-responsive watering results in faster growth, greater resistance to problems associated with humidity and bigger harvests.

The Origins Of Hydroponics

There are some fascinating origins and uses behind the technique of growing in water so we thought we’d share a few with you...

Floating gardens of the ancient Aztecs

The Aztecs were a nomadic tribe who were driven onto the marshy shore of Lake Tenochtitlan, located in what is now Mexico. They had no land on which to grow crops, so they learned how to build rafts of rushes and reeds and grow vegetables, flowers, and even trees on these rafts which they called Chinampas.

They dredged up soil from the bottom of the lake and piled it on the rafts. The soil was rich of organic debris that released large amounts of nutrients which fed the abundant crops of vegetables, flowers, and even trees planted on them. The roots of these plants grew though the floor of the raft and down into the water. This is much like the root growth you will see in our Vivigrow Planter. Watch our short video showing early root growth of our tomatoes growing in our Vivigrow.

Sometimes the rafts were joined together to form floating islands as long as two hundred feet long. Some Chinampas even had a hut for a resident gardener.

The Aztecs eventually developed a large and powerful empire but they continued to maintain the rafts. In the 16th Century when the Spanish arrived in the New World in search of gold, they were fascinated by these islands of trees seemingly suspended on the water. Chinampas continued to be used in the area into the nineteenth century.

Hanging gardens of Babylon

Many garden writers believe that the hanging gardens of Babylon, one of the seven wonders of the ancient world, were grown using a sophisticated hydroponic system into which oxygen and nutrient rich fresh water was regularly pumped.

Egypt & Antartica

Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphic records dating back to several hundred years B.C. describe the growing of plants in water along the Nile without soil. The extreme environmental conditions found in the Arctic make the process of growing food a formidable challenge. Four months of solid daylight, four months of total darkness, and unpredictable winds and temperature changes make growing extremely difficult. However, in Antarctica, successful harvests are achieved on a daily basis.

Astrastronauts & Military

NASA have been trialing systems growing in water and now astronauts are likely to be fed on long flights using food originating from crops grown in water. In World War 2 the shipping of fresh vegetables to overseas outposts was not practical so both the American Army and the Royal Air Force opened hydroponic units at military bases. Many millions of tons of vegetables grown without soil were eaten by Allied Soldiers and Airmen during the war years. After World War II the military command continued to use hydroponic growing methods. The United States Army had a special hydroponics branch and in 1952 it grew over 8,000,000 lbs. of fresh produce in water.

Taking the plunge into growing in water instead of growing in soil can be a bit daunting, but it’s really easy. If you have any questions or would like to know more, then one of our lovely Greenhouse Sensation Gardening Angels will be more than happy to help. Give us a call on 0845 602 3774 or pop us over an email