Static solution culture

In a static solution culture (for hydroponics), the plants are grown in containers filled with nutrient solution.

Static solution culture


Many different container types can work well for a static solution culture set up. In DIY models, Mason jars and similar are a common choice since they are cheap and readily available. Plastic buckets and tubs also work, and are especially handy if you want someting bigger than a basic Mason jar.

If the container is clear, it is a good idea to cover it with a non seethrough material, such as black plastic. Any sunlight that gets in will encourage algae growth.


A static solution culture can be aerated or un-aerated. If it is aerated, the aeration is usually quite gentle.

For a DIY system, you can get your aeration equippment from a pet store: aquarium pump, aquarium airine tubing and aquarium valves.

Important: If your set up ins un-aerated, you need to keep the solution level low enough. Enough roots must be in the air above the solution, to make it possible for the plant to absorb oxygen that way.

lettuce in Static solution culture

lettuce in Static solution culture

Nutrition solution

There are two schools regarding the management of the nutrient solution.

Alternative A: Adjust the solution on a fixed schedule, e.g. every Saturday or once every second week. Adjust by changing it, adding nutrients and/or adding water, as necessary.

Alternative B: Monitor the concentration level and adjust the solution when it drops below a specific treshhold. You can use an electrical conductivity meter for this. Just as with alternative a, you either change out the solution or adjust it by adding water and/or nutrients as necessary.

To make sure that the solution level doesn’t drop too low when you’re not around tending to your hydroponics, a Mariotte’s bottle or float valve can come in handy. Another option is to design the set up in a way that makes it impossible for the solution level to drop too low for the plant roots. You can for instance place your plants in sheets of buyant plastic and let them float on the surface. When the solution level drops, the plants follow it down.