“Can we grow plants without soil?”
For the vast majority of human civilization, human agriculture has relied on the soil it rested upon to grow plants. However, with the ascent of global urbanization, global warming, and soil acidification, we must find novel ways to generate agriculture in order to survive. So what is one way we can achieve this? Well, let’s use our engineering mindset to find out. One of our major roadblocks is that we need to rely on soil material to grow our plants, so what if we were to create a way to grow such lifeforms without the use of soil? Well, a fascinating technology known as hydroponics accomplishes this using a technique in which minerals in a water solute are directly substituted for soil, therefore enabling sufficient nutrition for plant growth. Hydroponics is being used all over the world to create urban agricultural systems, and might become a major agricultural powerhouse in their own right one day!