STUDY REGARDING THE SUITABILITY OF CULTIVATING MEDICINAL PLANTS IN HYDROPONIC SYSTEMS IN CONTROLLED ENVIRONMENT PUBLISHEDR.M. GIURGIU, G.A. MORAR, ADELINA DUMITRAȘ, PĂUNIȚA BOANCĂ, B.M. DUDA, CRISTINA MOLDOVAN
This paper focuses on growing medicinal plants in hydroponic systems. Medicinal herbs cultivation is widespread and the interest for this kind of cultures is growing on a fast pace. Harvesting the raw material from the wild can be very difficult due to the little control one can have dealing with problems like: misidentification, genetical and phonotypical variability, active substances variability and toxic compounds. Cultivating the medicinal plants in a more controlled environment can overcome these difficulties and more than that, recent studies showed that cultivating medicinal plants in controlled environment improves the concentration of bioactive substances. Hydroponic cultures getting very popular because of the results it showed in recent practices. The main plants cultivated in this kind of system are vegetables, or other plants used in food industry. The hydroponic system can improve the yield and have showed a huge economical advantage. This system is also used in green walls or vertical farms clearly being a tool of the future in agriculture sciences. The hydroponic system is a rigorous way of cultivating controlling the temperature, humidity, light, irrigation and fertilization of the plants that are growing in an inert substrate that can be rock wool, clay pebbles, vermiculite, perlite, coco peat and others. The goal of cultivating medicinal plants in hydroponic systems is to attain unequalled growth allied with excellent crop quality and high bioactive substance. The risks of hydroponic cultivation of medicinal plants are low germination rate and ecological problems that can be overcome by controlling the optimal parameters to obtain the best environment for germination; another risk is that it may need artificial pollination. Having all aspects taken in consideration, hydroponic cultures can have relevant results like uniform yield, with high percentage of bioactive substances and this kind of system can be the way to cultivate the medicinal plants in commercial purpose. Beside the economical and chemical advantages, the hydroponic systems of cultivating medicinal plants, helps protecting spontaneous flora and the diversity of the species that can be found in the wilderness. The challenge is that the synergistic effects can be not only conclusively demonstrated but also realistically defined for biotechnological intervention.
medicinal plants, hydroponic, bioactive substances, future prospects