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Hydroton as Hydroponic Medium

Hydroton Closeup

Hydroton absorbs and retains water.

Hydroton is more commonly known LECA or lightweight expanded clay aggregates. These round ceramic shells are popular with aquaponic systems and is also a good medium of choice for hydroponic systems. Like many hydroponic mediums, hydroton retains water and light in weight.

This hydroponic medium is manufactured in commercial quantity by firing up clay to temperatures that could reach 1200 degrees Celsius. The result is a dark grey honeycomb core and a round solid outer shell. Water can easily penetrate the outer shell and the core stays wet until water evaporate. The amount of sunlight and heat during summer speeds up this process so caution should be taken when watching over your hydroponics system’s reservoir.

Hydroton comes in two sizes depending on the supplier you get them from. They are sifted to two basic sizes right after they’re collected. I normally use the smaller grade when transplanting seedlings. The smaller grade of hydroton allows the seedlings to hold root easily for support when newly transplanted because the inner clumps have lesser gaps or spaces between them. I use the bigger and bulkier sizes for transplanting cuttings set on foams or plants that have matured long enough to be taller than the pots to which they will be moved to.

Hydroton is quite rare but you may also find it in specialty stores or gardening supplies. Make sure to rinse it over a strainer before use to remove the dust that might give your hydroponic systems a muddy color.

5 Responses to “Hydroton as Hydroponic Medium”

  1. August 27th, 2014 at 3:41 pm

    Sophia says:

    where can I buy hydroton here in the Philippines.

  2. August 29th, 2014 at 7:54 pm

    Jose says:

    Check with olx.com.ph

  3. March 18th, 2015 at 12:51 pm

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  4. February 19th, 2016 at 5:43 am

    Jen says:

    Where can I buy this within Cavite?

  5. November 25th, 2016 at 10:31 am

    Darwin Mugal says:

    In place of hydroton what other local materials that can be used in hydroponics as a medium.By the way I’m from High altitude,Baguio City.

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