What is aquaponics?

(I wanted to quickly repost this from my other blog, because I think everyone should know what aquaponics is.)

One of my favorite new subjects is aquaponics… the combination of aquaculture and hydroponics (or just plain gardening). Most people haven’t heard of it… but it’s quickly becoming well known among hydroponic gardeners and aeroponic enthusiasts alike. This time two years ago, there was almost no information available about aquaponics, but now there are several websites with awesome information to guide the average hobbyist.

Aquaponic Basics

Aquaponics, like hydroponics, can produce more plant life (or food) with less space than conventional gardening, and a well balanced system is healthier for both fish and plants. The key to it all is balance, however… and getting your system running in equilibrium can take time, patience, and some disappointment.

The picture above represents the aquaponic system, which is based entirely on natural systems (Basing our designs on those of nature is know as “biomimicry”). The picture above also goes over the nitrogen cycle, which is essentially the chemical path that waste takes to become usable to plants. Microbiological life in the soil (Generally) helps convert nitrogen into viable nutrient forms for plants, among other things. Nitrogen is often thought of as the most crucial nutrient for plants, as it is primarily responsible for leafy growth. Not all types of fish or plants work well in an aquaponics system, but some types thrive. I’ll go into more detail on this one in the next post.

This is the first of many posts on aquaponics and is meant to be an introduction. For more on this awesome new field of study, check out some links:

Backyard Aquaponics – a decent site, that now has a magazine with lots of Aquaponics info!

Aquaponics basics video

Comments/questions are encouraged!

~ by s_peak on January 31, 2011.

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