Crops that cannot be grown hydroponically

Crops that cannot be grown hydroponically

Hydroponic farming has become the core of sustainable agriculture as it offers an efficient and eco-friendly method of farming. If you want to start hydroponic farming in India, your journey starts with identifying which plants are the worst and best to grow.

While some plants grow exceptionally well on hydroponic farms, others do not. In this blog, we will give you a list of crops that cannot be grown hydroponically and a few important to consider before starting a hydroponic farm in India.

Here are those 7 Crops, which are not be grown hydroponically

1. Corn

Corn has extensive roots and requires plenty of natural light or sunlight. Its roots can grow up to 60 inches deep. Another factor to consider is that traditionally corn is grown in fields with access to complete sunlight. In a hydroponic farming setup, the LED or Light Emitting Diode would not have the same effect.

2. Potatoes and Sweet Potatoes

Potatoes and sweet potatoes require a lot of space to grow, and their roots need to be able to spread out. They are also a starchy crop, which means that they would need more nutrients than other vegetables. The lack of soil also presents a problem because potatoes need nutrients that are found in the soil, such as nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus.

3. Large Root Vegetable

Carrots, turnips, and beets are examples of root vegetables that do not do well on a hydroponic farm. These vegetables need loose soil so their roots can spread out and grow properly. In a hydroponic system, the roots would be confined to a small space and would not have enough room to grow.

4. Vine Crops

Vine crops also need support, such as a trellis, to keep them from falling over. In a hydroponic system, the vine would not have enough room to grow and would not get the support it needs.
Installing a trellis for a hydroponic system is work-intensive and impractical because it leads to additional costs, complicates the process of changing nutrients and water, and would pose a challenge for the suitable amount of lighting.

5. Cabbage

Cabbage is a head crop, which means that it needs room for the head to develop. In a traditional farm, the head is above ground level, and the roots are below ground level. In a hydroponic system, the roots and head are at the same level, which does not allow for proper development.

6. Pumpkin and Other Gourds

Pumpkins and other gourds are typically grown on the ground and require a lot of space to spread out. Their large size also makes them difficult to grow in a hydroponic system. Additionally, pumpkins need bees for pollination, which can be a challenge in a closed system.

7. Squash and Melon

Most hydroponics systems consume less space. This makes growing squash and melon not an ideal option since they need a lot of space. They are also a vine crop, which means that they will need something to climb on and require the installation of a trellis, or else the fruits will be misshapen. Additionally, the fruits of these plants are quite heavy and may break the stems if they are not supported properly.

Apart from the crops, here are some factors to Consider while Choosing Hydroponic Plants

1. Space Consumption

Plants that are to be grown in hydroponics must have lesser space consumption. This is to make sure that each plant gets an adequate amount of space, air, and light. One of the main objectives of hydroponic farming is to be able to have a garden, even in small spaces. With this in mind, growing plants that are big in size are not a suitable recommendation.

2. Environmental Requirements

To have a prosperous hydroponic farm, environmental factors like pH, temperature, nutrients, and lights must be closely monitored and modified according to the needs of the plants. Different plants have different requirements when it comes to these environmental factors so it is important that you do your research on what each plant needs before growing them on a hydroponic farm.

3. Growing Habit

Plant stature and size are major considerations when it comes to gardening. For instance, plants that crawl need to have a different kind of support than plants that grow upright. The same goes for hydroponic plants; their growth habit will determine the type of system you need to set up and the kind of maintenance required. Therefore, when considering cultivating a specific plant in a hydroponic farming setup, you need to have an understanding of how it will develop physically.

Brio Hydroponics: your solution to hydroponic farming

Brio Hydroponics can help you set up hydroponic farming in India. We provide everything you need with a keen focus to boost sustainable ways of living. If you're looking for ways to get involved in hydroponic farming setup, join our Hydroponic Joint Venture program, which gives you the opportunity to participate in a high-growth industry with little to no risk.


A hydroponic gardener needs to consider factors like space consumption, environmental requirements, and growing habit when choosing plants to grow. Some plants are not ideal for hydroponic systems because they require a lot of space or need specific environmental conditions. Therefore it is important to do your research on the plants you want to grow before setting up a hydroponic system. 

Want to know more about how to start hydroponic farming in India? Contact us at Brio Hydroponics, a hydroponic farming setup company in India, today to learn more about our hydroponic joint venture program.