What Is Aquaponics And How Do I Grow Vegetables With The System?

It is possible to produce a fresh, rotating supply of organic vegetables when using an aquaponics system. Home systems are an economical space saving practical way to produce food to feed your family and yourself indefinitely.

Everyone has a basic understanding of how gardening works.  Basically, you take your seeds and plant them, water when needed, fertilize, and keep out bugs and weeds so the plant can flourish.

Using aquaponics means most of this process is taken care of automatically.

A standard system creates a nitrogen cycle. In the system the water is shared between grow beds and a fish tank. The fish in the fish tank produce waste that has a high ammonia content. Pumps then carry the waste to the beds, where rich fertilizer is created when the bacteria is processed. The fertilizer has a high nitrogen content.

Vegetables pull the nitrogen out of the water, which in turn makes the water safe to be reintroduced into the fish tank. This cycle is repeated over and over. The fish provide the nutrition for the bacteria, bacteria provides the nutrition for the plants, and the plants are a filter for the fish. You just have to decide what plants you want to grow, and be sure to feed the fish.

It is important to decide what type of bed you want to use to grow your plants, as different plants will grow differently in vary conditions.  The structure of the roots is what helps determine this.  

If the plant does not have a big root structure, you would use a floating bed. Root vegetables that have a substantial root structure would do better in the wicking beds. All other plants seem to do well in media beds. Plants like herbs, leafy greens, or lettuce do well with the “raft” style floating beds. Peppers, tomatoes, beans and most multiple yield plants do better when using media beds.

The right environment has a big role in your choice of where to place your farm. Rainfall, the amount of available sunlight, ambient temperature and the how strong the winds are all factors in helping produce a healthy plant. If you are choosing to grow outdoors, you need to pick the best variety of vegetables that will grow in your climate. Most areas typically use a green house, and some people actually grow indoors.

If you are looking for the quickest yielding vegetable while using an aquaponics system, grow lettuce.  Lettuce takes less than thirty days to mature, and grows best in floating beds. Lettuce can tolerate varying water temperatures and can survive in a wide range from 25-85 degrees.
Having an aquaponics system allows you to grow your own organic vegetables year round if you choose. Most of the work is done for you by the system, instead of the intense labor of traditional gardening. When working correctly, you will be able to constantly maintain a rotating supply of pesticide-free, organic, vegetables that continue on as long as you keep the system maintained.

Learn more about aquaponincs and building aquaponics systems at aquaponicsideasonline.com.