5 Reasons Why We Love Our Hydroponic System at Hotel Verde
Hotel Verde is the proud owner of a hydroponic system as well as an on-site vegetable patch. In order to supplement the kitchen with seasonal produce, we recently installed a fruit-bin growing site that houses approximately 30 plants in a compact area 1.2m2 area, in addition to our existing 1.5m x 2m hydroponic unit that houses 100 plants.
This allows us to grow our own leaf lettuce, rocket, celery, thyme, spring onion, sweet basil, marjoram and edible flowers like viola and pansies.
So, why a hydroponic system? Excellent question! Here are five reasons we chose to go this route:
1. It uses less water
As a sustainable hotel, one of our main goals is to keep our use of natural resources as low as possible. We already save water by means of low-flow sanitary fittings, dual flush toilets, waterless urinals, and washing machines that re-use the final rinse water from a given cycle to pre-rinse the next. Our hydroponic system is a great fit since it uses 90% less water than a conventional growth set-up.
DID YOU KNOW? Hotel Verde has an on-site water purification- and carbonation station, as well as a bottling facility, which allows us to bottle all of the water we serve in our restaurant and conference facilities in reusable glass containers.
2. You can grow food year-round
A hydroponic system also allows you to grow food year-round. Tilapia fish live in water tanks at the base of the system. They feed the algae growing in the tanks, and the nutrients of their waste, once broken down by a bio-filter, feeds the plants. We harvest the plants and regrow on a constant basis, replanting regularly.
3. Plants grow faster
Soil-based plants have to do a lot of hard work to find water and nutrition. On the other hand, plants that are part of a hydroponic system have everything they need delivered right to them, allowing produce to flourish.
4. Weeding is less of a chore
Plants that are grown in hydroponic beds don’t have to be weeded since there isn’t any soil for weeds to grow. This is a boon for any gardener, since they can focus on the wellbeing of their plants instead of spending time removing weeds.
5. Growers have control over plant nutrition
In a hydroponics system, everything required for plants to grow successfully must be provided by the grower. This gives you complete control to tailor your nutrient selection to your individual plants or growth phase, or experiment to get the best yields from your plants.
There you have it — five amazing reasons why we love our hydroponics system at Hotel Verde. Remember to ask about it when you visit us for your next #SustainableStay in Cape Town. Our team will gladly show you where to find it so you can take a closer look in person.