Fish. Aquaponics and hydroponics are essentially the same thing, except for the added element of fish. You feed fish food of some kind, they excrete waste, that waste is turned into a format that plants can absorb by beneficial bacteria, which cleans the water for the fish.
Fish are the food source for the plants. Plants are the water filter for the fish.
Advantage : Hydroponic crops Hydroponic crops can produce large volumes. In addition, with discipline and organization, food can be produced throughout the year.
A hydroponic system consists of, minimally:
-Extensive nutrient/fertilizer inputs
-Pump or wicks
-Non-soil medium to hold the plant steady (at least in the beginning) like Rockwool, gravel, etc.
Disadvantages : Hydroponic crops demand a large amount of fertilizers and when the fertilizers reach their cycle they must be discarded.
Advantage : Aquaponic crops have all the above-mentioned advantages. In addition to these advantages, we can mention that the fertilization of the plants is carried out thanks to the decomposition of the waste of the fish. The environment is not contaminated since waste is not generated, everything is recycled and recirculated within the system. Two sources of income are generated with plants and fish.
An aquaponic system consists of, minimally:
-A fish tank
-Much fewer nutrient/fertilizer inputs
-Pumps or wicks
Often the water used to water the plants comes directly from the tanks of fish as well. The fish excrement is removed and also used as fertilizer. The fish are fed with as many of the scraps, such as the greens, from the plants as possible to make it as closed a system as possible. Well designed, this system can be very closed and sustainable.
There are active systems were a pump is used to circulate water from the tanks to the plants and the runoff runs back into the fish tank. Others are passive where no pumps are used by the plants grow directly in the water of the tanks, generally in buckets half submerged in the water.
Disadvantages : Aquaculture crops need a trained person both in the management of hydroponic crops and in the management of aquaculture crops. You must be aware that the fish do not die inside the tanks because this unbalances the whole system. The volume of production is limited to the number of fish. High initial investment
Build Home Aquaponic System :
Advantage : Aeroponic crops Aeroponic crops generate a greater mix of nutrients and oxygen for the roots. It has shown better performance in tuber crops.
Disadvantages : Aeroponic crops demand a large number of fertilizers and when fertilizers reach their cycle they must be discarded. In addition, the materials used to generate an additional cost.
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Traditional organic crops
Advantage : Traditional organic crops have become very popular as they are presumed to be very healthy foods and do not contain chemicals that are harmful to our health but organic pesticides. In addition, organic crops have a better flavor.
Disadvantages : Traditional organic crops occupy large tracts of land, which sometimes leads to the deforestation of forests to expand the cultivated areas. In some cases it is very difficult to produce organic food and, in addition, the certification processes are more delayed and expensive.