In this short article we’ll be discussing a little bit about a beginners guide to aquaponics. Aquaponics (also known as water gardening) is a system in which livestock (fed animals like fish and tilapia) are grown in an aquaponics system. The fish produce waste for the system to recycle while the plants convert the waste into nutrients for the fish to eat.
The system is self-sustaining, since the plants pull the nutrients from the water and put them into the soil where the fish live. What makes aquaponics so appealing to many is that it can be a good source of alternative energy to power an aquaponics system. A lot of people have seen the benefits of aquaponics on their food bills when they use it to grow their own fresh produce. Below we will look at what aquaponics is and how to build an aquaponics system.
What is Aquaponics?
Aquaponics is an alternative-growing method that combines elements of aquaculture and hydroponic farming in one integrated ecosystem. The name is a combination of both of those, with the aqua from hydroponic farming, which is the rearing of marine fish in tanks, being replaced by soil to provide the plants with what they need to grow. The process is similar to traditional farming except that aquaponics does not require the use of pesticides, herbicides, or other chemicals. Aquaponics also does not use soil to provide the nutrients to the plants. This is different from traditional farming since traditional farming utilizes the soil in order to deliver the nutrients to the crops.
How to Build Aquaponics System
There are a couple of different ways you can go about aquaponics. One way is to use biological growing techniques in aquaponics. These pros and cons of using this option are pretty obvious and should be discussed at length. If you are just starting out with this type of gardening, I would suggest checking out some aquaponics-related e-books online first to get a better idea of what all of the fuss is about.
The Biological Methods
Biological methods of aquaponics are very time-consuming to set up and take advantage of. This is because of how these systems grow. Most of these biological systems require large amounts of space. Also, most of these require a significant amount of labor because of how it takes a lot of time to actually setup and maintain these systems. Also, as soon as the plants start to grow, you have to constantly refill the water, fertilize them, etc… All of this can prove to be very time consuming.
The Drawbacks of this System
Another thing biological systems do is that they require a constant source of water. When a traditional farming method uses water, it only needs to be used a couple times a day. With aquaponics, you will need a water supply at all times. If you were to use water from a natural source such as a pond or waterfall, you would have to manually refill your water source at least twice a day. This can prove to be very problematic, especially if you do not live near any bodies of water.
The Hydroponics Nutrients System
Aquaponics can also be used with hydroponics nutrient systems. Using hydroponic nutrient systems is a great way to raise crops without having to deal with soil. Hydroponics nutrient systems allow you to provide your fish with everything they need to grow like healthy water, nutrients, lighting, food, and salt.
You can setup aquaponics with biological filters. Many people prefer biological filters because they allow the fish to filter out waste and dead skin cells. However, biological filters can also filter out the valuable nutrients found in the water. You can also setup aquaponics with nitrifying bacteria. Nitrifying bacteria will break down nitrites and nitrates in the water so that you can add them back into your natural growing environment.
Benefits of Aquaponics System
One of the best benefits of aquaponics is the direct relationship between fish and plants. With aquaponics, fish produce healthy products that plants can use. Without fish, there is no way for plants to get the nutrients they need. Your fish feed off the plants, which in turn will help you feed off the fish. With a good system you will never run out of nutrients for your plants. Watch the video below to learn more about aquaponics or you can jumpstart on the most complete beginners guide to aquaponics called Aquaponics 4 U. A Step-by-Step How to Build Your Own Aquaponics System.