One of the most popular gardening systems that have evolved in recent years is aquaponics, which requires less maintenance than other systems and is easy to set up, even for beginners. Aquaponics is a hybrid of the 2 older systems of aquaculture and hydroponics, and is easily scaled up into an aquaponics business that can provide large quantities of fresh produce and clean fish. Each of these traditional farming methods has drawbacks which aquaponics provides a solution for.
Hydroponics is growing fruit and vegetables without soil. This method requires either heavy daily maintenance or machinery to deliver the nutrients to the plant life in a systematic way. Aquaculture is a method of raising freshwater fish in a controlled closed system, however, for the system to work, a large percentage of the water has to be replaced every day, or else the water will become too dirty for the fish to live in. At least 300% of the water in an aquaculture system will be removed and replaced each month, and that can get very expensive.
Aquaponics provides the benefits of both systems without the drawbacks. The water doesn’t need to be replaced because the water is filtered by the vegetation. The other great advantage is that the plants are constantly nourished by the natural fertilizer that the fish provide. It is common for aquaponics systems to provide the same level of nutrients to the organics that a similar sized hydroponics system provides.
The plants and fish establish an equilibrium that is self-sustaining. By harnessing the power of this innovative technique, people the world over have created their own self-sufficient source of protein, vitamins, minerals, and fiber that the fresh fish and organic produce provides.
Farming your own organic fruit and vegetables has traditionally been an expensive and time-consuming process that requires daily maintenance in order to be successful. Aquaponics has become a time-tested favorite for people that want an inexpensive and virtually maintenance free method of harvesting their own fresh fish, fruit and vegetables that are chemical-free.
There are a lot of reasons why aquaponics is becoming more popular each day:
1. The system is easy to set up, and often employs recycled materials that are inexpensive..
2. After the initial break-in period, the daily maintenance consists of feeding the fish and adding water to replace any that has evaporated.
3. The system is ideal for homes or businesses with limited space.
4. The nutrient content of the organic fruit and vegetables is high, and they grow just as well as in an expensive hydroponics system.
5. The sheer number of aquaponics enthusiasts is growing in leaps and bounds, and as this excitement continues to spread, the number of online resources and experts that can be accessed by the everyday gardener is expanding.
6. An aquaponics business is easier than ever to start. Since the aquaponics method is completely scalable, it can produce a larger harvest by simply increasing the number of plants and fish.
How Many Organic Vegetables Do You Want To Harvest?
It is easy to for someone with a home aquaponics system to scale it up into a viable business. It is common for the home gardener to harvest 400 pounds of organic fruit and vegetables a year with a simple home aquaponics system. Along with this cheap source of organic vegetables, nearly 200 pounds of clean fresh fish can be produced by the same system.
Aquaponics provides a simple and effective business model for green businesses. There is very little waste utilizing this technique, and the initial investment is usually the cost of the fish holding tanks, the grow beds for the vegetation, and a mechanical filtration pump that is recommended for larger systems. For those who are considering possibly selling their harvest, it may be useful to consider a larger space from the outset, that way the system has the room it will need to expand.
The first few weeks are critical to the long-term success of any aquaponics system. The water pH levels must be closely monitored, and the correct ratio of fish, healthy bacteria, and vegetation must be established so the system will be able to sustain itself. By paying close attention to the water conditions, you can ensure that the fish are enjoying their new home, and that the plants are getting all the food and nutrients that they need to grow to their fullest potential.
Beginners are enjoying great success in building their own self-sustaining systems, by understanding the fundamentals of aquaponics and by making sure that they do not neglect any of these important elements. If you have always wanted an easy way to grow your own tasty fruit and vegetables, then take the time to check out what aquaponics has to offer.