Hello Professor Lee,
I’m trying to decide between using a drip irrigation bucket system or a recirculating DWC. Is one better than the other? I only want to grow three mature plants as that is the limit in my area. I plan on using a 600-watt LED lamp in a back room.
Questions like this make my builder bug rear its ugly head! I love setting up systems and these are some fun ones. To answer your question, it really comes down to how much money, labor and time you are willing to invest. Both systems will meet your modest needs and produce excellent results. The drip system will be a bit cheaper and less intensive to build and maintain while the recirculating deep water culture method takes a bit more to put together and operate. I have nothing against the DWC system—in fact it’s one of my favorite ones—but I always suggest starting off as simply as possible when you are trying something new. If I were you I’d want to try the drip irrigation system first and if I decided to upgrade to the recirculating DWC I could modify/reuse a lot of the materials.