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Growing your own produce encourages you to eat more fresh vegetables and helps reduce food waste.
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Grow your own organic vegies (and fish) without soil

Nothing tastes better than homegrown vegies, picked fresh from the garden and eaten while they’re bursting with flavour and goodness. Vegetables that ripen in the garden contain more nutrients than most store-bought vegetables that must be picked early, in some cases weeks or months in advance.

Growing your own produce has numerous health benefits, including:

  • Encouraging you to eat more fresh vegetables
  • Empowering you to choose the types of fertilisers and pesticides that come in contact with your food
  • Controlling when to harvest, which eliminates wastes

Now, imagine growing your own vegies and fish at home – without soil or pesticides. Well, you can with an Aquaponics system.

Aquaponics is a combination of aquaculture (growing fish and other aquatic animals) and hydroponics (growing plants without soil). This symbiotic, closed loop system feeds plants with the aquatic animals’ discharge or waste. In return, the vegetables clean the water that goes back to the fish.

Here’s a short video that explains how it works.

 

 

Grow fresh fish, flowers and vegetables free from pesticides

Homeowner Richard Ng, who lives in a self-sustainable community, needed a space saving solution that would enable him accommodate a seven-tonne koi pond, 500 fish and 1,300 ‘cups’ of assorted vegetables within 400-square feet of space in his backyard.

“Over a six month period, I tried a number of do-it-yourself filtration systems I found on the internet, but none worked properly,” he explains. “There were lots of clogging issues, which created a large amount of unnecessary work for me.”

Conventional pond filtration systems generally keep the mechanical and biological filtration separate, which often means the equipment can take up substantial floor space. They can also require a high degree of maintenance, which can prove to be both time consuming (particularly during the summer months when the frequency of cleaning increases) and costly.

One Australian system aims to change all of that.

Specifically designed for ponds and water gardens, Waterco’s Aquabiome filter provides mechanical and biological filtration in a single housing. Its ability to support dense populations of nitrifying bacteria coupled with its reliability and easy maintenance makes Aquabiome especially suitable for high density recirculation systems. Special features include:

Mechanical filtration

Mechanical filtration physically removes solids from the pond by trapping solids between the crevices of the filter media.

Biological filtration

Biological filtration is the most effective method of removing toxins (ammonia) and breaking it down into nitrites and then into nitrates which provide food to your aquatic plants (referred to as the Nitrogen Cycle). This is accomplished by using naturally occurring bacteria and giving it a place to live in the Biofilter media where it is exposed to large quantities of food and oxygen.

 

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An abundance of fresh, healthy vegies

Since his personal Aquabiome filtration solution was installed last year, Richard says his aquaponics system is producing an abundance of organic produce while creating a healthy environment for his fishes to flourish.

“Aquabiome is easy to use and understand,” says Richard. “There is no longer daily manual cleaning on clogging issues. All of the fishes and vegetables are thriving.”

 

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Veda Dante

Veda Dante is an accomplished journalist, consultant and content creator who has nearly 30 years’ experience writing about everything from tourism, hospitality and health to architecture, pools and luxury goods. When she’s not producing copy for clients, this self-confessed word nerd is usually writing and photographing the Byron Bay region for her blog www.livebyron.com.au

The opinions expressed in this article are the opinions of the author(s) and not necessarily those of Homeloans Ltd.