Time To Get Kratky

Kratky Method

When people first think about hydroponics they tend to imagine large scale high tech growing areas, full of lights and extractions systems. However, it doesn’t have to be this way. In this weeks blog, we’ll be telling you about a simple and effective hydroponic system that is easy to set up and even easier to run.

What Is The Kratky Method?

The Kratky method was first thought of by B.A. Kratky from the University of Hawaii and is a passive hydroponic technique for growing plants suspended above a reservoir of nutrient-rich water. As this technique doesn’t need nutrients to be circulated, no additional inputs of water or nutrients are needed after the original application, and no electricity, pumps, or water and oxygen circulation systems are required.

Thanks to the low setup cost of Kratky systems, the method has applications both for commercial food production and as a small-scale and low-maintenance technique for home growers. This means that more and more home growers are turning towards this technique with excellent results.


How Does A Kratky System Work?

The Passive Bucket Kratky Method v1

As you may know plants need oxygen, water and light to survive and to reach their full potential they need macronutrients and micronutrients. The Kratky method of growing supplies plants with all these needs in a simple way.

Firstly, nutrient and water is added to a reservoir.

Plants are then placed into a net pot with a choice of medium like rockwool or pebbles, which is held by a lid and suspended above the full reservoir.

The plants roots are then partly submerged into the water and partly exposed to air, however, some Kratky users fill the reservoir to the top so the roots initially do not have access to air.

As the roots and plant grow, the reservoir will lower to create an air pocket. This air gap is where the plants root will receive oxygen.

For fast-growing vegs, when the water in the system is almost empty, your plants may have reached their harvest time. If you want to let the plants continue growing, you can add more water and nutrient solution, and recheck the pH level.


Tools Needed To Make A Kratky System

A container for a reservoir: This can either be as large as a barrel or as small as a milk bottle, it all depends on the size of your plant.

A lidThe lid is one of the most important aspects of a Kratky System. It protects plants from pests and disease and also prevents water in the container from vaporing. In addition, it also supports the plant so making sure the lid is strong enough to support the plant is vitally important

Net potsChoose the size you need for the plant you want to grow.

Medium: With Net Pots you can use most types of medium, however, rockwool and coco peddles are most suited.

Hydroponic nutrientsChoose the nutrients best suited to your needs. We’d suggest either General Hydroponics 3 part package or Canna Coco A&B for coco users.

PH measurement equipmentMaking sure your ph levels are vitally important for the health of your plant

A pH control kit: You should occasionally use the pH kit to check the pH level of your system whether is too low or too high and adjust it accordingly.


How To Set Up A Kratky System

Stage 1: Cut a hole in the lid large enough to fit your net pot

Stage 2: Fill your reservoir with your water and then nutrient. Only use distilled water or tap water if it isn’t contaminated.

Stage 3: Next check the nutrient solutions PH level with a ph stick. Always try to aim for between 5.5 and 6.5. If need be, use a PH level kit to adjust the levels.

Stage 4: Finally place the net pot with medium into the hole you cut into the lid. Make sure parts of the root are touching the nutrient solution.


Plant Best Suited To A Kratky System

Typically leafy greens like lettuce, spinach and herbs are best suited to the Kratky System. However, you can also grow larger plants like tomatoes, chillies and cucumbers but you should note that these will need more maintenance than smaller plants.



The Kratky way of growing plants is the perfect technique for anyone who is just starting out as it is easy to set up and is relevantly cheap to buy. Furthermore, as the plants require little to no maintenance to grow, it is also a great technique for anyone who has no time to garden but who wants the benefits of grow your own fruit and veg.


Grab Your IWS Kratky System Here

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