The term aquaponics refers to the new gardening style, which combines raising aquatic animals and cultivating water plants. This concept might sound unfamiliar to you, but it is well applied in some modern countries due to its little environmental impact to produce high quality.
Let’s imagine how convenient it is when you can catch fish and pick vegetables for your dinner in your backyard. This page is geared towards those frequently asked questions about aquaponic that can help you have basic knowledge before investing in a system.
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What can be grown in aquaponic?
The completed aquaponic system couples aquatic animals and plants in water. The number of plants and animals you can grow depends on the capacity of the system. Here are some recommendations on aquaponic plants and fishes.
Plants that have low nutrients needs and grow well in the new system should be considered first. They are green leaf, red leaf, mint, swiss chard, arugula, basil, watercress, and other leafy lettuces.
If you have already had experience in the aquaponic system, you can challenge yourself with some fruiting plants such as tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, beans. Those plants have higher nutritional demands but will need more strict care conditions.
Herbivorous and omnivorous freshwater fish are ideal for their sustainability because of their easy eating habit. You can consider these fishes to grow in your systems such as tilapia, catfish, koi, goldfish, pacu, and crayfish.
How does an aquaponics system work?
Aquaponics systems comprise three components, each of which depends on each other to survive: the aquatic animals (the fish), the nitrifying bacteria, and the plants.
When fish food is put into the system, the fish will consume and transform it into urine fecal matter. If accumulated to a certain quantity, the excreted waste can be toxic to both plants and fish.
Biofilter plays a vital role in changing the ammonia-rich water and decaying plant matter into organic nutrient solutions under bacteria’s control. Then water in the tank is filtered for growing vegetables. Thanks to plants, the nutrients are absorbed and removed to leave the water clean for fish.
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Is aquaponic better than hydroponic?
Although both hydroponics and aquaponics have a predominance of benefits in comparison to soil-based gardening, many believe that aquaponics is a better option than hydroponics.
First, the aquaponic system requires less daily maintenance once established. Indeed, it requires less monitoring and can be handled much more quickly than a hydroponic system.
Second, aquaponic is ideal for those who love nature and have a passion for the environment. Nature lovers tend to be attracted and admired in your creative fish ponds. Surely, you will see the appeal of aquaponics more than hydroponics.
Third, you can double your business: fruit/vegetables and fish. As you know, having or not having fish is the main difference between aquaponics and hydroponic.
What are the disadvantages of aquaponic?
Every coin has two sides. So does the aquaponic.
Setting up an aquaponic is more complicated than hydroponic. Aquaponics system requires more profound expertise for farmers to set up. You need to equip yourself with tons of knowledge like how to grow vegetables, how to run wire, how to set plumbing and other technical skills.
High electric consumption is another big downside of an aquaponic system. It is understandable as the aquarium needs to be kept at a specific temperature 24 hours a day.
Is aquaponic food healthy?
If aquaponics’ operation works well under strict management, your aquaponics food is healthy, obviously.
As aquaponics is a thriving ecosystem, any toxic waste is turned into nutrients through the water flow, keeping the water always clean for the growth of fish.
To conclude, it is worth investing in an aquaponic system to produce excellent quality food for your community. We hope that this article can help you find out some useful information. Just follow the tips mentioned above, and you will have a great experience when investing in an aquaponic system.