Nutrient Film Technique
NFT or Nutrient Film Technique is the pioneering hydroponics system. This technique is quite old, however, it remains quite popular among indoor horticulturist because it's fairly inexpensive to setup and easy to use. It is especially popular with Australian and New Zealand lettuce farmers because the lettuce is cleaner than field grown crops that gets dirty from the soil.
NFT - Nutrient Film Technique (Hydroponics)
The way NFT hydroponics systems work is the plants roots are partially airborne and partially submerged in a thin "film" of mobile nutrient solution. The plants are grown above the nutrient reservoir tank. The nutrient solution is controlled by a submersible pump which circulates the water up to the plants and back down to the reservoir. The roots are only submerged in about 1-3mm of nutrient solution that flows slow enough to prevent damage to the tender root system.
Benefits of using NFT system
1. Low start-up cost
2. Ease of use
Standard Gully Systems, Rockwool Gully Systems, NFT Wall Garden
As with most hydroponics systems available, the NFT techniques also has it's draw backs. Because the roots are constantly submerged in water, the root system is not allowed to aerate properly which inhibits it's development. To overcome this obstacle the pump may be cycled to essentially create a flood and drain (Ebb & Flow) system.
Growers may also place air stones under the root system for oxygen to reach the plants. H2O2 (Hydrogen Peroxide) may be diluted and used every 24 hrs. instead of air stones. However, H2O2 prohibits the use of organic growth promoters and other stimulants that reduce bacterial infestation like pythium.
Another disadvantage from using the NFT technique is the plants has very little support to keep them up right. However, growers can easily find ways around this problem. Using stings to tie plants may help - Scrog may be helpful as well.
This article courtesy of www.hydroponicsearch.com
Other Indoor Gardening Articles
Flood Drain AKA Ebb Flow
SAVING SEEDS FROM YOUR GARDEN
Hydroponics Gardening - An Introduction To Hydroponics Gardening For Beginners Part 6 The Autopot
Starting Seeds for Your Garden Indoors
Plant Light - The Fundamentals
Online Garden Seed Exchanges