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In hydroponic growing operations, net pots are a standard piece of equipment used to house the growing medium and roots of each plant.

Net pots are often placed in sections of the hydroponic system called grow sites, they are one of the most basic but important components of a successful hydroponic grow.

A standard net pot for hydroponics.

Skimmer baskets and net pots are similarly designed but are made for vastly different purposes.

Skimmer baskets are components used in swimming pools, most often in tandem with the pool’s water pump. The purpose of the basket is to catch dirt and debris that would otherwise be left to float around the pool.

Can I use a skimmer basket in place of a hydroponic net pot? Skimmer baskets may work as a net pot in hydroponic systems, in a pinch, but are not highly suggested. In some cases, the holes in skimmer baskets are too small and hamper roots from developing fully (which means smaller plants for you). If you have a choice, go for the actual net pot (which is designed solely for housing plants in hydroponic applications).

Other considerations include the type of material that your skimmer basket is made from, how large it is, and how much it weighs.

Again, it is recommended to purchase net pots or even make DIY net pots, but a skimmer basket may do the trick if you have no other choice (especially if you modify them a bit, like enlargening some of the holes to allow roots through).

Suggested Reading: Hydroponic Gardening 101

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