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On the Down the Garden Path Radio Show and Podcast, landscape designers Joanne Shaw and Matthew Dressing discuss down-to-earth tips and advice for your plants, gardens, and landscapes.

Joanne and Matthew believe it's important and possible to have great gardens that are low maintenance.

Each week, they educate their listeners on how to seasonally manage their gardens and landscapes. Joanne and Matt learn right along with their listeners, from each other, from their research, and from the many guests who join them on their show. 

Listen live at on Monday’s at 7 pm ET or subscribe to download this show and past episodes from your favourite podcast app. 

Check out the website for even more garden tips and tricks.

Jan 25, 2022

In this week’s episode of the Down the Garden Path podcast, landscape designers Joanne Shaw and Matthew Dressing speak with Tyler Baras, chief science officer and co-founder of Area 2 Farms in Arlington, Virginia, about home hydroponics.

Tyler has a range of urban agricultural experiences from homesteading to commercial hydroponics. He has worked as a grower for 3 Boys Farm Inc., one of the first certified organic hydroponic farms in the United States. In 2015, Tyler wrote one of the best-selling hobby hydroponic books, DIY Hydroponic Gardens: How to Design and Build an Inexpensive System for Growing Plants in Water. In 2017, Tyler wrote Roadmap to Growing Leafy Greens and Herbs, an educational book for new growers and investors interested in commercial hydroponic production of leafy greens in greenhouses and indoor farms. In 2021, he wrote Home Hydroponics: Small-space DIY Growing Systems for the kitchen, dining room, living room, bedroom, and bath.

For more on Tyler Baras, please visit

Don't miss Joanne and Matt's conversation with Tyler Baras about home hydroponics.

Some of the questions and topics covered:

  • For people new to the term, what does it mean to grow hydroponically?
  • Do you buy plants and transition them to water or can you start seeds in water?
  • What are some of the things one should consider before starting a hydroponic set vs. growing in soil? Can anyone do it?
  • If there isn’t any soil, how are our plants being supported in a hydroponic system?
  • How do we feed our plants?
  • What do you think of kits like “Click and Grow” or Aero Gardens, etc.?
  • Can you tell us about some of the materials we’d need for a simple beginner setup?  Are there DIY starter kits?
  • Where can we buy the products for a DIY setup?
  • For those of us who might be a bit more adventurous, are there any other items we could use to enhance our hydroponic setup?
  • Your new book Home Hydroponics is filled with interesting DIY hydroponic projects. Tell us about how the book came about?
  • What are some of your favourite projects?

Each week on Down The Garden Path, professional landscape designers Joanne Shaw and Matthew Dressing discuss down-to-earth tips and advice for your plants, gardens and landscapes.

As the owner of Down2Earth Landscape Design, Joanne Shaw has been designing beautiful gardens for homeowners east of Toronto for over a decade.

And Matthew Dressing is a horticulturist and landscape designer. He owns Natural Affinity Garden Design, a landscape design and garden maintenance firm servicing Toronto and the Eastern GTA. Together, Joanne and Matthew do their best to bring you interesting, relevant and helpful topics. Their goal is to help you keep your garden as low maintenance as possible.