A NASA researcher checking hydroponically cultivated onions, with Bibb lettuce to his left and radishes to the right.

Hydroculture is the growing of plants in a soilless medium, or an aquatic based environment. Plant nutrients are distributed via water.

The word "hydro" derives its name from the Greek word ὕδωρ (hudōr) meaning water,[1] hence hydroculture = water culture. Hydroculture is aquatic horticulture.


In basic hydroculture or passive hydroponics, water and nutrients are distributed through capillary action. In hydroponics-like hydroculture, water and nutrients are distributed by some form of pumping mechanism.


The roots might be anchored in clay aggregate such as the trademarks LECA and Hydroton.

Advantages include ease of maintenance as watering and feeding involve just topping up the reservoir of growing solution. Certain types of hydroponic media are resistant to some types of soil-borne insects.

See also


  1. Liddell, H.G. & Scott, R. (1940). A Greek-English Lexicon. revised and augmented throughout by Sir Henry Stuart Jones. with the assistance of. Roderick McKenzie. Oxford: Clarendon Press.
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