The Youtube Hydroponic Cheat Sheet: Wick Edition

People who only grow things in the summer are suckas! Yeah. I just said it. And?! Bosses grow whether it’s hot or cold. And although I totally missed out on that container garden that my wife and I had planned, I’m going to be growing mustard greens in my den this February. Like… A… Bawsss!

It’s called hydroponics. I wrote about it here and here. But before we start making salads, like a boss, we need to talk about how it’s done.

There are six methods of growing hydroponics. They include cutting edge systems so efficient that they are damned near magic. In aeroponics, for example, the plants hover in a holographic mist of nutrients and positive affirmations. Okay. No they don’t. I don’t know what the hell they do. I know that nutrient enriched mist is sprayed on them at regular intervals. And I know that in a lot of the pictures depicting aeroponics, the plants are housed in what look like laboratories. I’m not ready. Maybe next week.


Aeroponics: If I had a spaceship, one room would look just like this.

For now I am going to keep it stone age simple.

The following youtube video depicts a wick hydroponic system. In wick hydroponics, the plants rest in a growing medium, like dirt or rocks. They do this for no other reason but support. Beneath them, snaking down into a cocktail of water and nutrients is a wick.

If you’ve ever had a chemistry set with one of those little wick style burners, then you get the point. Don’t know what I’m talking about? Picture a little molotov cocktail, but instead of throwing it, you put it on your desk beneath some chemicals that you got in a box for Christmas. My childhood was full of adventure.

Instead, think of a straw at Wendys. The nutrients are the frosty, the plant is a kid who made the mistake of thinking that because frostys come in beverage cups, they are meant to be drank with straws. Slowly, the water flows up the wick, providing the plant with measured nutrition. Unlike the child with his frosty, the plant thrives.

Wick systems are so simple that some people question whether or not they really constitute hydroponics at all. There are no little pumps involved, and no cool gadgets to rig up. In fact, if you have a two liter bottle, some pebbles and a roll of paper towel, then you can begin this first hydroponic project right now.

How much can you grow? Depends on how much soda you drink.