It is a symbiotic combination of aquaculture – raising fish and other aquatic animals, with hydroponics – growing plants without soil.

In Aquaponics plants are fed with the discharge or waste of aquatic animals. In return, the vegetables clean the water that recycles to the fish. Along with the fish and their waste, microbes and the bacteria gather in the spaces between the roots of the plant and convert the fish waste into substances for the nutrition of the plants.

Aquaponics is a system for organic crop production, aquaculture and water consumption. The fish waste is used for plant growth instead of throwing it as a waste and the water is also recirculated in a system lowering the consumption.

Types Of Systems:

Since aquaponics uses basically the same systems as hydroponics, except for the added fish in the water tank(s). Drip irrigation, flood and drain, deep culture or water submerged roots, and nutrient film technique are highly compatible and customizable to merge with growing fish.

Role Of pH Control In Aquaponics

pH plays an important role in aquaculture. Setting of pH to a perfect level can be a good practice to care for three living organisms: plants, fish and the bacteria present inside the water as each of them has a need of different pH. A neutral pH from 6.8 to 7.2 is good for the aquaponics. Due to the fish waste, pH becomes acidic and needs to be adjusted with aquaponics pH adjusters. If the pH level is not maintained means its too alkaline or too acidic, the plants will not be able to absorb nutrients optimally and fish will die eventually, hence It is essential to monitor and maintain the hardness of water and pH level at fixed interval taking care to slowly increase or decrease the pH without sudden change.

Types of Fish and Other Aquatic Animals to be Grown In Aquaponics:

The fish grown are freshwater fish, most popular being Tilapia and Barramundi as they tolerate better diverse water conditions and grow fast.

Trout can be used especially for lower water temperatures. Other aquatic animals which can be grown are snails and shrimps.
One can feed the fish with food available from stores or foods like Water Lettuce and Duckweed.

Types of Vegetables to be Grown In Aquaponics:

One can grow vegetables that don’t need heavy nutrient input  like Lettuce, Kale, Watercress, Arugula, Decorative Flowers, Mint, Herbs, Okras, Spring onions, Leek, Radishes, Spinach and other small vegetables. Cabbage, Tomatoes, Cucumbers, Beans, Broccoli and Cauliflower requires more nutrition hence can be grown in a more advanced aquaponic system.

Avoid growing plants that need acidic or alkaline water, because this pH level can harm the fish.

Benefits Of Aquaponics :

  1. It is a way to grow your own fish and vegetables at the same time.
  2. No need to use fertilizers as the fish provide rich nutrients to the plants.
  3. Less water is used for the crops. The requirement of water for aquaponics gardens is 1/10 th as compared to soil gardens.
  4. No requirement of gardening pesticides or other chemicals.
  5. The produce results in healthier and organic vegetables.
  6. No soil borne diseases.
  7. Requirement of very small space with a great harvest.
  8. The growth of plants is fast as they get very nutritious substances from the fish waste.
  9. The production of plants and fish can be done in controlled temperature environment.
  10. Water is recycled in a closed system and circulated effectively, reducing the water consumption