I announced today that I'm writing a book for New Society Publisher called "Aquaponic Gardening: A Step By Step Guide to Growing Vegetables and Fish Together". Things I've learned about aquaponics from this community will be featured all over the book, but I especially want to represent the emotional connection that so many of us have with aquaponics by starting each chapter with a quote from someone in here about what aquaponics means to them.
PLEASE help me out by adding to this discussion below. (and by adding your comment to this particular thread know that it will be quoted for posterity )
To me, aquaponics represents the possibility of growing life sustaining nutrient rich foods in a way that can actually positively affect the health of our planet. Most agricultural methods deplete our soils, but we hold the magic key with aquaponics. By composting the waste from our plants and fish, we can nourish the land that we need to do so much work to repair while leaving it fallow or revitalizing it with native plants that combat erosion and provide much needed wildlife food and habitat.
My hope is that aquaponics will develop in a way that allows us to grow all of the food a growing global population will need while preserving our natural biomes in all of their beautiful diverse glory.
We as people have not only survived on this planet for thousands of years, but, thrived.. and the reason for this is because we are constantly evolving.. Aquaponics to me is just another marker in history where we can safely say we have mastered one of the most crucial applications of our time, food production, and by using Mother Nature as much as possible.. we can now confidently continue to thrive into a new era.
Aquaponics is so many things to me
Fun hobby to life sustaining food production system and many things in between.
Aquaponics is an easy automatically watered, automatically fertilized garden that provides fish as well as veggies.
Aquaponics is a consuming hobby that exercises the mind considering flows, filtration, and all sorts of other design elements for those who like to build and refine their own systems.
Aquaponics Provides a relaxing place to sit and listen to moving water while watching fish, viewing plants, or meditating on the next system expansion.
Aquaponics is a wonderful food production system that saves water.
However, Aquaponics is only part of my food production system since I am also actively working on creating a food forest and raising poultry for eggs and meat. Diversity is the essence of sustainable food production.
Producing ones own food is empowering and the feeling I get from eating meals right out of our own yard is difficult to express but it is certainly wonderful.
I love that aquaponics by nature is a very sustainable way of growing.
As soon as I learned about aquaponics, I became obsessed. It just made so much sense to me. I couldn't stop researching and ultimately built a backyard suburban aquaponics farm, which provides a large quantity of organic fruits and veggies to my family as well as those in my community through our buying club. Learning to build a system from scratch using repurposed/recycled materials whenever possible, combining different AP methods and growing vertically (for space saving) was challenging, but the rewards have been plentiful! There is still much to learn and that is what makes it so interesting.
I've had flooding due to forgetting to turn a pump off, timers fail in the middle of the night, and a few other malfuncitons etc. but I take it all in stride, laughing about it helps.
Every time I notice something else sprouting up or ready to harvest, my heart leaps! Just the other day our seven year old daughter came running in bursting with excitement, as she had just picked the first ripe strawberry.
I'm thrilled to be part of the AP growing community!
Sylvia thanks for letting me express my love for aquaponics again. There is a line from a song( i think) that says "You make my heart sing" I can trully say that aquaponics makes my HEART sing.
I am 70 years old and have always been a farmer. I grew up on an 280 acre farm in Iowa. I was sure that was what I did not want to be. I was sent to Hawaii when I was in the Navy and I never left. I bought an acre of land and went to gardening and farming. I have always tried to be as organic as I could. I will admit that when the bugs attacked I would get some bug killer until I learned the organic way. I love the growing of food. As Michelle said "My heart leaps" when I see those shoots comming out of the ground. You go out each day to see how much it has grown. You get totally excited when you see the first fruit and one can not explain the joy when you eat the first fruit.
I planted a fruit farm in 1999 and sold fruit for 10 years but the journey to the swap meet became too much. Then one day my chiropractor came running over to the lab where I work with this video from Nelson and Pade. I was hooked from that moment on. Because I am a scientest and a researcher I began to search the internet. I was surprised at what I found. I set me up a little system with a fish tank and 6 half barrels. Wow it worked. I was so excited. Things went well for a while and I developed a torn retina and had to quit. I was only allowed to watch tv. No reading, no computer for 6 months. I about died from boredom. Then my chiropractor came running over to tell me about classes in Honokaha HI. I had to wait for the next class but I was there. I left that class so filled with expectation I was about to burst. I went home and built me 2 very large on the ground rafts and began to grow food. All of a sudden my leaves were turning yellow and I started to find out what was wrong. I could never get an answer from the people who gave the class but I stumbled into this site in March. I asked the question on how to get some chelated iron. In one day I had the answer and the iron in my hand. From that moment I have been addicted to this site. It is the first thing I check in the morning and the last thing at night.
Aquaponics has given me a reason to sing. It has made my life productive. I can do all the things it takes to keep it going. It gives me joy tofeed the fish each day and give the tanks names. Each tank is different. I yell over the fact that the cucumbers are growing and producing. I have been blessed to have WWOOFers to share this joy with They have become excited and we all learn. I am a generousperson and aquaponics gives me a chance to share with people not only the vegetables but the knowledge of how to make their own system and become sustainable. Someone else said that it is hard to put the feeling into words. The Hawaiian's have a saying "It gives me chicken skin" I guess that about sums it up It makes my heart sing and gives me Chicken skin. Thank You Sylvia for helping to make this possible.
For me Aquaponics represents nutrition.
In our heavy populated society where even the most essential jobs and products are treated with an enterprising eye, corporate farms are simply depleting our foods of nutrition. The soils are not being replenished and the land is dieing. Aquaponics changes how all that works. No pesticides are used and water is retained and reused: so the end result of Aquaponics is a sustainable, ecologically friendly means of producing nutritious fruits and vegetables as well as filling in another depleting reserve, our oceans fish.