Amanda will be the first to tell you that hydroponic gardening to grow your own food at home is both ridiculously fun and frustrating. "Just when you think you're on auto-pilot, a batch of roots clogs a pipe and sends half your plants gasping for water, and you don't know until they're laying there lifeless one morning."

"There is absolutely such a thing as beginner's luck too. See, you set up your system, and it's pristine. It's free of light leaks, it's never been touched by the likes of algae, and you're adding a practically sterile grow medium to your growing unit. It will, for sure, kick off like gangbusters, and like having a docile first child, you'll be convinced it will be just as easy the next time around. But the second round is never the same."

"For me, that's where it gets fun (science!) but also a little frustrating. Because here's what's most likely to happen because it happens to all of us after our first go-round. The winter will end, you will clean out your unit but not really clean it, and next time you use it, you're set up for total annihilation," she writes. 

What type of algae is in hydroponics?
Algae is mostly just a way of life when it comes to bigger hydroponic systems because when you combine light and water, you get algae. Since the system is pumping 16-20 hours of light a day at a system that's circulating water from a reservoir, you're basically farming algae.

That said, algae are more of a cosmetic and cleaning issue than a practical issue. The type of algae growing in your hydroponic system is most likely green algae or chlorella, the same stuff you might find growing in a fish tank with a bright light.

Read the entire article at Food Gardening Network