One reason that I have become so enthusiastic about Aquaponics, is my wife’s wholehearted support.
For those of you who have been on another planet over the last couple of months, here is a quick and easy definition of Aquaponics.
Aquaponics is by definition, the combination of aquaculture (fish farming) and hydroponics (growing plants without soil). One of the most difficult (and costly) elements of fish farming is the filtration process, and in hydroponics, it is in providing nutrients to the plants without using soil. The beauty of aquaponics is that in combining the two, they equal out the negative aspects in each of them. No filtration is needed and no additional nutrients and fertilisers need to be added.
Nutrient rich fish water is pumped from fish ponds into gravel beds, where plants growing in the gravel, extract the nutrients from the water. The water then drains back into the fish tank cleaned of excess nutrients and freshly oxygenated. The system uses no chemicals, and produces no wastes, and uses about one tenth of the water used in soil grown vegetables, all on a very small land footprint.
At first I was a bit apprehensive about the capital cost, and I expected my wife to put the brakes on, but for some reason or other, she gladly approved the budget.
Her attitude appears to be that my involvement in my system will give her more time to do the things SHE wants to do. She has even offered to feed the fish while I’m out of town.
I always struggled to get her to help me when we were growing our veggies in soil, and she grumbled and complained continuously. I don’t know what her problem was, but I can honestly say that Aquaponics has greatly improved our relationship. She isn’t getting as much exercise, so she has got a bit chubby, but hey, at least she has the energy now to keep the beers coming.
Aquaponics has changed our lives.
Here’s a photo from when we still grew our veggies in the soil.
P.S. I’m the one doing the more “technical” work, steering the plow from the back.