Aquaponics is made up of two systems, Aquaculture (The farming of aquatic creatures) and Hydroponics (Growing plants in nutrient rich water without soil). Basically growing plants using the nutrients from the fish waste and purifying the water for the fish at the same time.
Aquaponics is a great example of mutualism, both organisms (Plants & Fish) benefit from one another, keeping the system happy and healthy.
How does it work ?
Ammonia is produced by fish waste and decomposing organic matter. The ammonia is then converted by Nitrifing Bacteria intoNitrites and then into Nitrates.
The Nitrate rich water is then pumped into the grow bed where the plants absorbed the nitrates (Natural Fertilizer). The purified water is then drained back into the fish tank and the cycle starts all over again.
What are the benefits ?
Saves space – Plants are able to grow closer together due to the constant supply of nutrient rich water.
No soil – Soil pests & weeds are eliminated due to the lack of soil in aquaponic systems.
No watering – Thanks to the re-circulation of the water in the system, not only does it save you the hassle of watering but it also saves water (70-90% less water than traditional farming).
Plant growth – Plants grow a lot quicker due to the surplus of nutrients and water.
Less labour – You will use a lot less energy for a bigger harvest.
Healthy & organic – From the system to your plate.