If you’re reading this, you probably know what aquaponics is and how it uses fish and water to grow healthy plants and vegetables. Aquaponics has seen a surge in popularity all over the world with more and more people jumping on the aquaponics bandwagon.
There are hobbyists with just a small setup in their backyard to grow vegetables and there are also huge commercial farms producing huge amounts of vegetables using aquaponics.
This article will give you 5 reasons and the time you are done, you will have all the info you need to make an informed decision.
1. Ease of operation
This is the number one reason most people choose aquaponics. Unlike traditional gardening that involves daily watering, weeding and other back breaking work, aquaponics is a relatively hands off system.
The most difficult part is only at the beginning when you are constructing the system and getting everything in place. Once you get over this hump, the rest is a piece of cake. The most important thing is to get the setup right and do it well. This will prevent future problems from occurring.
You will only need to keep an eye on your fish and the pH levels of the water. Ensure that your fish are happy and healthy and the pH is stable at a range of 6.8 to 7.0.
2. The plants grow faster
It has been proven that the aquaponics system makes plants grow much faster than traditional soil based gardening or even hydroponics. It has been reported that plants grow twice as fast and the yield can be 10 to 20 times more than with normal gardening.
So, not only do you save space, but you also save time. It doesn’t get better than that, does it? Actually, it does… See the next reason.
3. It is cheaper than traditional gardening
So, not only do you save time and space and effort… but you also save money. Why?
Aquaponics uses much less water than normal gardening because the water is cycled. Furthermore, nutrients and fertilizers are not necessary, thanks to the fish waste. You will also save money if you construct the whole system from scratch by yourself.
There is an excellent video course at www.aquaponics4you.com that will guide you on setting up an aquaponics system quickly, easily and cheaply.
You will have to spend money on electricity costs, buying the fish, fish food and seeds. However, these are not really expensive and will not make you lose your shirt.
4. Tastier and healthier produce
The vegetables you grow with your aquaponics system will be fresher, healthier and taste better. Most commercially produced vegetables have chemicals and all kinds of other substances sprayed on them to ward off insects and make the plants grow bigger. Your produce however, will be organic and much healthier. You will also have a sense of pride from knowing you cultivated your own vegetables.
These 4 reasons are good enough to make most people decide to setup a system in their backyard. Providing food for oneself can be a very rewarding experience and it’s fun too.
How to Setup Your Own Aquaponics System Easily
Aquaponics is the combination of aquaculture and hydroponics to grow organic and wholesome fruits and vegetables. Aquaculture is the growing of fish while hydroponics is growing plants without soil. Aquaponics is fast gaining popularity all over the world since it’s a relatively easy and inexpensive, low hassle system.
The great thing about aquaponics is that it does not use chemicals and requires a tenth of the water that is normally used to grow the same amount of plants in a garden or in soil. You will also be able to rest assured that the vegetables you produce do not contain toxic chemicals, insecticides or other harmful substances. There is also the pride in knowing you cultivated your very own veggies.
Before you start looking for equipment or buying materials, the first thing to do would be to plan carefully. The saying, failing to plan is planning to fail, holds true when setting up an aquaponics system.
Firstly, you’ll need to decide on how big or small your system is going to be. Aquaponics is scalable. You want to roughly have some idea of what you may wish to do in future. For example, if you start by creating a small aquaponics system and it turns out really well, you may wish to expand it. However, if you initially set it up in a small corner of the room, your plans may be constrained by a lack of space. Then you will have quite a bit of work to do. So, plan for the future.
You will also require a few pieces of equipment. Make sure your budget allows you to get this essential equipment. Don’t skimp on them. The success of the system will depend on how well your system works as a whole. It will pay to invest in a good pump and filtration system. All these little things make a big difference later on.
The aquaponics system itself is pretty much a hands off system. The only time you get involved is during the setup. Most problems that occur later on are due to mistakes made during the initial setup.
There are books and online videos available to help you get started with aquaponics. These guides will go into much greater depth and will shorten your learning curve. It would be a really good idea to have a solid grasp of the fundamentals of aquaponics before starting and discovering that you have no idea what you are doing.
Another point to note is that it may take some time to setup your aquaponics system. Do not attempt to rush it. This is an ecosystem that involves a delicate balance of plants and fish. You can’t achieve this in 2 days. You will need to exercise patience in the construction, choice of fishes and vegetables you will grow. It may take a few weeks to get it all functioning well and smoothly. However, once it is done, it’s smooth sailing from then on.
The aquaponics system uses much less water as compared to traditional gardening and it involves way less work. So, put in the effort in the beginning and you will not have to put in much effort later but still reap fresh, organic vegetables.