How To Build A Simple DIY Hydroponics System – 23 Easy DIY Hydroponic Plans

DIY Hydroponics is a perfect way to grow fresh vegetables at your own place. It is not essential to have an experience of years to construct your own indoor grow system. This is all possible with the help of hydroponics.

The whole idea of hydroponics is based on inventiveness and flexibility. Nowadays, you can find numerous diy hydroponics systems floating all over the internet. Here, I have accumulated the best homemade hydroponic systems. All of these plans include step-ups for experts, beginners, and intermediate.


Hydroponics definition is an innovative method to grow plants without the use of soil. Instead of soil, a hydroponics system uses an oxygenated and nutrient-rich solution. This makes the uptake process of nutrients by plants more efficient and effective as compared to the conventional way using soil.

The best part about hydroponics is that you can create your own DIY hydroponics system. This system will allow you to grow vegetables and fruits all year round. On the other hand, there are readymade hydroponics systems available out there if you do not like the idea of building one yourself.

What Is Hydroponics

Why Do You Need A Hydroponics System?

Hydroponic systems are becoming popular by each passing day. These hydroponic systems are admired especially by garden enthusiasts, hardcore growers, homemakers, and others who want to grow more plants. The biggest advantage of a hydroponics system is that it increases the yield and growth of plants drastically.

If you compare the growth with plants growing in soil, you will find that it matures 25 percent faster than them. Also, yield more than 30 percent in comparison to plants, which are grown conventionally in soil. This results because in a hydroponics system, plants do not have to grow extensive roots to search for the necessary nutrients in soil. Other benefits of hydroponics systems are listed below.

Benefits of A Hydroponics System

There are various benefits of a hydroponics system. If you have no idea what the benefits are, read them further below.

  • No requirement of weed-picking or hoeing
  • Faster plant growth
  • No requirement of pesticides
  • More production in small areas
  • Quick absorption of nutrients
  • Grow any vegetable or fruit all round the year
  • Immune to soil-borne diseases
  • Cost-effective DIY hydroponics
  • Can be placed outdoors and indoors

Materials Required For Setting Up a DIY Hydroponics System

In order to set up DIY Hydroponics system, you will need some materials. The materials for the same include the following:

  • 50-gallon container with a lid
  • 6” PVC pipes
  • Fence (made of PVC)
  • Submersible pump
  • Net cups
  • Manifold
  • Stand
  • Grow media (Clay)

Steps for a DIY Hydroponics System

It is not a difficult task to grow organic vegetables and fruits at your home. System offers a great way to start your own farming by hydroponics at home. Let’s move on to the process of creating a Hydroponics system. 

hydroponic setup

The steps for a DIY hydroponics are listed as follows:

Step 1: Decide the location

Initially, you need to find the location where you want to build your hydroponic system. It could be indoors or outdoors such as a greenhouse, deck, patio, or the basement. If going for an indoor hydroponic setup, the floor needs to be leveled for an even distribution of nutrients and water to plants. If outdoors, you need to keep an eye on water and wind levels.

Step 2: Assemble the hydroponic system

The container rests under the stand of six 6” PVC pipes and the pump rests inside the container. This pump will deliver nutrients to all the plants with the help of smaller tubes and pipes. Each of these tubes has a drainpipe that directs back to the tank. Put the manifold on top of the pipes to deliver water to the tubes with pressure.

Step 3: Mix the water and nutrients in the tank

Now, fill the container with water and add nutrients to it as per recommendations on the label. You need to switch ON the pump and run it for half an hour.

Step 4: Add plants to the growing tubes

For plants, you can opt for readymade seedlings. Look for the healthiest plants and then, wash off dirt from their roots with lukewarm water. After it, pull roots through the planting cup bottom and add clay to hold it upright.

Step 5: Bind the plants to the Trellis

Next, tie plants to the trellis or fence with the help of a string or plant clip. It will help them to climb up the string.

Step 6: Switch on the pump

You need to keep the pump switch on all the time. Check water levels on a daily basis if possible twice a day. Along with that, check nutrients and pH levels after a few days.

Step 7: Monitor the system and plant growth daily

It is really important to monitor the growth of plants. These plants will grow quickly if sufficient nutrients and water provided. You need to tie stalks of the plant after a few days.

Step 8: Examine for diseases and pests

Do not forget to examine plants against diseases and pests such as chewed leaves, foliar diseases, insect pests, etc. This is important as one infected plant can infect other plants easily. On finding such a plant, remove it immediately. In addition to it, remove bugs if any.

Best Hydroponic Systems For Sale

If you are looking to buy the best hydroponic system, below is the comparison table of top 3 hydroponics systems for sale which will help you quickly make the best choice.

23 Easy DIY Hydroponic Plans You Can Build in Your Garden

Hydroponics systems are meant for small-sized gardens. It can be intimidating to grow plants in small areas with poor or dry soil. Here, know about some of the different hydroponic systems for your limited space. Let’s move on these creative ideas for DIY hydroponics!

1. Passive Bucket Kratky Method

Passive Bucket Kratky Method

Difficulty Score: Beginner (1/5)

Passive Bucket Kratky Method is the easiest and convenient hydroponic plans. It is a great option for beginners. For this, you will require a bucket, growing media such as perlite and hydroton, hydroponic nutrients, pH kits, and net pots.

The best part is electricity is not required while this system will work passively without any maintenance. One can grow vegetables like spinach, lettuce, and tomato once experienced.

2. Bucket Hydroponics

Bucket Hydroponics

Difficulty Score: Beginner (1/5)

It is another easy hydroponic system for beginners. You will require growing media such as perlite-vermiculite or coco coir, nutrient mix, and a 5-gallon bucket. Here, the growing media takes on the capillary action by moving nutrients to the roots of plants.

This hydroponic system is perfect for one large plant. In order to keep thing basic, you have to water this system manually.

3. Desktop Hydroponics

Difficulty Score: Beginner (1/5)

It is one of the cheapest hydroponic systems that one can place on the desk. It makes a perfect system for small plants like lettuce or herb. You need a container for plants like a coffee can or a small bucket.

Now, place the plant in a plastic net cup along with rock wool or other growing media. Its small bubbler is going to cost you some money.

4. Mason Jar Hydroponic System

Mason Jar Hydroponic System

Difficulty Score: Beginner (1/5)

In this low-maintenance method, you do not require motors or electricity. It is similar to the previous system but makes use of Mason jar in place of the container. This hydroponic system does not require special tools and other things are mostly available in houses.

You need net cups to hold plants and place these cups into lids of Mason jars. One can use cups that goes well into the jars. Use the nutrient solution accordingly and let roots to grow inside the jar.

5. Crystal Magic Hydroponic

Hydroponic Crystal Magic

Difficulty Score: Beginner (1/5)

Indoor hydroponic system could be more fun with Hydroponic Crystal Magic. You can make use of crystal soil for your indoor flowers and plants. This crystal soil is a magical alternative for the normal soil. With this system, you can take your love for the hydroponic system to the next level. All you need to do is to get your hands on this crystal soil.

6. Aquarium Hydroponics

Aquarium Hydroponics

Difficulty Score: Beginner (1.5/5)

This hydroponic system is the coolest project to enter the planet of hydroponics. You can use this system to engage your kids with this field. As its name proposes, you will require a fish aquarium to make it work. This hydroponics system can be employed to grow a large lettuce or small beans.

You need barge-fashioned raft along with water, plants, and nutrients. It can be active or passive with the help of electricity and pumps.

7. Bucket Hydroponics Drip System

Bucket Hydroponics Drip System

Difficulty Score: Beginner (2/5)

It is an advanced method than the previous hydroponic systems. You can still manage using products that price less than $100. You will require four plants and place them in different buckets. These plants will be watered by a universal reservoir. You can expand this flexible hydroponic setup in future if needed.

You can modify the dimension of the reservoir and the containers based on the plants’ size. A 4-gallon bucket or even smaller containers will be enough. Later on, you can purchase a larger reservoir if you would like to insert more plants.

8. Deep Water Culture Hydroponics

Difficulty Score: Beginner (2/5)

It is ideal to grow lettuce or tomatoes indoors. Take a plastic box as the container for the nutrient solution. You can house up to eight plants depending on the box size.

For this system, you need a bubbler as well as hoses to deliver oxygen to the solution. Place plants in plastic net cups along with grow lights beneath them.

9. Stackable Hydroponics

Difficulty Score: Intermediate (2.5/5)

This system is quite popular to grow numerous plants in small gardens. This stacking system is perfect for hydroponics as well. You need to regulate the unbalanced flow into plants placed at lower levels. You can experiment with diverse plants that accommodate diverse nutrient and water needs.

10. Vertical Window Farm

Difficulty Score: Intermediate (3/5)

It is an amazing way to resolve the difficulty of illumination while you create a charming window display. You require containers to setup plants vertically in a rack. Recycled water or cold-drink bottles can be used here as containers.

Make use of pipes or tubes to deliver nutrients to plants from the tank. Here, natural sunlight will be the lighting source. This hydroponic system is for strawberries, chard, kale, and herbs.

11. Dutch Bucket Hydroponics

Difficulty Score: Intermediate (3/5)

Here, you can water the system manually by applying the nutrient numerous times every day. On the other hand, you can use a circulating system with the help of PVC pipes, tubes, and a pump.

A small bucket can accommodate various small herbs or a large plant. This Dutch bucket hydroponics system can be housed outdoors or indoors depending on the system scale.

12. Drip Water Hydroponics

Drip Water Hydroponics

Difficulty Score: Intermediate (3/5)

In a drip water passive system, one can make use of gravity to deliver nutrients to plants. You will be required to place the reservoir and the garden creatively here. Otherwise, you can employ a pump and thin tubes for the same. This drip system is best with growing media and other options include perlite-vermiculite and coir.

13. Ebb-Flow System

Difficulty Score: Intermediate (3/5)

Here, you require growing plants housed in a container. You have to water this medium with the nutrient solution every now and then using the process called flood-drain system. For this hydroponic system, you will require a pump and timer for mechanized operation.

14. Fish Tank Hydroponics

Fish Tank Hydroponics

Difficulty Score: Intermediate (3/5)

Have you ever thought of combining the idea of hydroponics with a fish aquarium? No, then you should give this innovative idea a try. Here, the hydroponic system runs on the wastage of a goldfish. The plants extract nutrients out of the wastage and then, purified water trickles down in the same way. So, a fish helps to make the garden work and vice versa.

15. Indoor Cupboards Hydroponic

Indoor Cupboards Hydroponic

Difficulty Score: Intermediate (3/5)

If you do not like the idea to bring clutter inside your homes with indoor hydroponics system, then this is for you. You can take help of hydroponic indoor cupboards to resolve all your worries. You can place these indoor cupboards inside your lovely kitchen. These cupboards grow the organic food for you. It comes with a mobile application that lets you to keep track of everything.

16. Grow Box Hydroponics

Grow Box Hydroponics

Difficulty Score: Intermediate (3.5/5)

This DIY hydroponic plant is quite flexible so as to move here and there. One can use storage bin or tub with a lid for this intermediate system. You will require a pump, PVC pipes, and sprinkler heads so as to water and deliver nutrients to plants.

Plants are accommodated in plastic net cups, which are filled with the growing media. The lid will accommodate these cups.

17. Rain Tower Garden Hydroponics

Difficulty Score: Intermediate (3.5/5)

It makes use of a towered structure that need to be placed vertically. The whole hydroponic setup costs about $500. Here, fence post can be used to create the tower. This method works well for both outdoors and indoors.

Plants are accommodated in plastic net cups. These cups are placed evenly across the post length in recesses. One can use a pump to water plants.

18. PVC Hydroponics System

hydroponic setup

Difficulty Score: Advanced (4/5)

This advanced homemade hydroponic system requires 4” large PVC pipes. Plants will be located in cups that will go inside the holders in pipes. Pump and reservoir can be used to water plants. As it is a blocked system, water will circulate between the reservoir and the pipes.

A basic PVC system can reside 20 to 40 plants. One can place this system outdoors or indoors. If placed inside, you will need grow lights. It is best to grow plants such as tomatoes.

19. ZigZag Hydroponic Systems

ZigZag Hydroponic Systems

Difficulty Score: Advanced (4/5)

This hydroponic system is quite convenient and interesting for DIY hydroponics. You can place the system in any direction as you want such as vertical, horizontal, and zigzag. Here, you need to arrange PVC pipes in a zigzag manner on the board. It is ideal for smaller plants like lettuce, spinach, tomatoes, etc.

20. Frame Hydroponics

Frame Hydroponics

Difficulty Score: Advanced (4.5/5)

It is quite alike to the hydroponic system of PVC pipes. It employs the same principles based on NFT to deliver water and nutrients to plants. This hydroponic system allows you to grow more plants in the same place by adding more PVC pipes on diverse heights.

One can place these pipes effectively on a wooden frame. It can be used to grow plants such as tomatoes and strawberries.

21. Ezgro Original Hydroponic

Ezgro Original Hydroponic

Difficulty Score: Advanced (4.5/5)

It is a fairly expensive hydroponic system. It can be used to grow fresh herbs, leafy green vegetables, tomatoes, pepper, and so much more. Due to its vertical design, one can grow as much as 100 plants on an area of 21 square feet.

For this system, you will require an automated timer that will water the plants for you. However, you have to refill the reservoir with the nutrient solution.

22. Vertical Gutter Garden

Vertical Gutter Garden

Difficulty Score: Advanced (4.5/5)

This DIY hydroponic is the most effective way to grow plants indoors. This system works on the technique of NFT, where PVC pipes are used to grow plants. It is just conceptual design, which was designed by a team of four engineering science students of the University of Toronto.

Vertical Gutter Garden is best for windows that have no tables. Otherwise, the frame can be placed on a table. A frame plays an important role in this system to hold plants vertically.

23. IKEA Hydroponics

IKEA Hydroponics

Difficulty Score: Advanced (4.5/5)

IKEA Hydroponics offers another interesting way to grow plants while keeping the décor intact. You can easily go for indoor hydroponics with this innovative product from IKEA. It proves that you do not need a lot of space and skills to become a gardener. Place this indoor hydroponics kit anywhere in the kitchen without compromising with the décor.

Related posts:


Now, you understand the hydroponics definition and also know what kind of diy hydroponics is the best one for you. I have tried to bring in diversity regarding the hydroponic systems. It would not be difficult for you to choose one out of so many choices. It is best to for the easy method if you are a beginner and then, move onto advanced methods.

However, homemade DIY hydroponics is both a science and art. You can incorporate your own ideas to make your system look aesthetically pleasing along with a lush produce. The only concern should be to get sufficient nutrients for the plants. Other things depend entirely on your creativeness and imagination.

So, build your own diy hydroponics and do not forget to post your comments and reviews after creating a homemade hydroponic system. We would love to hear your creative ideas and queries if any.

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 0 comments