Grow Your Own Organic Vegetables

Grow Your Own Organic Vegetables

Grow Your Own Organic Vegetables

Aquaponic systems are an extremely versatile way to grow your own organic vegetables.  It can be used for both personal and commercial use while simultaneously protecting the environment.

Aquaponic Benefits for the Backyard Gardener

Undoubtedly there is some work and cost involved in establishing an aquaponics system.  However, the benefits far exceed these. Aquaponics gives families the opportunity to establish a sustainable supply of healthy organic produce throughout the whole year. Once the system has been established, maintenance is minimal and the return is high.

Unlike backyard gardens, there is no ‘back-breaking’ work.  Aquaponic systems are typically built so that the plants and roots are above ground level. You hardly have to bend your back to plant, grow and harvest produce.

Plants You Can Grow With Aquaponics

There are a large array of produce that can be grown using aquaponics, such as  strawberries, tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, squash, capsicum (bell pepper), eggplant; herbs like basil, oregano; and a variety of peas, beans, chives and lettuces, just to name a few. There really are very few restrictions on the type of produce you can grow.  With aquaponics, you can even grow root crops such as carrots and beets.

Advantages of Aquaponics

Water availability can be a critical restricting factor when establishing a backyard garden. However, aquaponics removes this restriction because of the reduced water use and self-sustaining nature of the system. Aquaponics can also act as a great learning tool for children.  You can teach them the value of sustainable living and the different ecological interactions between plant, fish and the environment.

Aquaponic Benefits for the Commercial Producer

Commercial production of food, whether it is on a small or large scale, is limited by soil fertility and water availability. Unfortunately, many areas of land have poor soil quality and/or issues with water reliability. Also, regions of high fertility and good water availability are typically very expensive and inaccessible to the typical producer.

Although it is possible to establish commercial crops in some areas, the cost is extremely high. Aquaponics provides an excellent solution to these limiting factors and in many aspects, it is far superior to traditional growing methods. Aquaponics can be set up by anyone, in any location and water supply can be as simple as rainwater stored in tanks.

Conventional horticultural farms require high expenditure through irrigation systems, farm equipment and the use of synthetic chemicals, just to name a few. Aquaponic systems don’t require as much labor and cost intensive operations such as ploughing and herbicide/pesticide applications.

Not only is there an economic benefit from using aquaponics in commercial applications, there are also health benefits because farmers don’t need to expose themselves to dangerous chemicals that are frequently used in commercial operations. It is possible to produce stainable high yielding crops without the use of toxic chemicals which are proven to be damaging not only to human health, but also the environment.

Aquaponic Benefits for the Environment

As mentioned previously, there are significant environmental benefits using Aquaponic systems. Water is become an increasingly scarce resource and undoubtedly this is a significant problem that is unlikely to be resolved in the near future. Thus, it is logical to use a system of growing horticultural produce that consumes less water.

Aquaponics allows producers to grow the same amount of produce while using less water. Conventional farming methods pump irrigation out into the land, where it is lost to evaporation, runoff or percolation. However, because water is recycled and reused through the Aquaponics system, water is not wasted and the water required to replenish the system is minimal.

Modern farming methods often require significant chemical intervention through the application of herbicides, pesticides and fertilisers to limit competition and maintain high yields. However, an Aquaponic system dramatically reduces this because the nutrient supply is provided by fish waste, eliminating the need for chemical enhancement.

Also, the use of can be chemicals interrupts the ecological systems due to negative impacts on the fish, water quality and the plants. The use of controlled environments, such as greenhouses, also reduces the need for pesticides and further limits negative environmental impacts.

Erosion and siltation have always been a major problem as a result of commercial horticulture. However, Aquaponic systems solve this by eliminating ploughing. Consequently topsoil is maintained along with vital soil profiles and waterways are not subjected to siltation and further degradation.

Having been an avid gardener for years, discovering aquaponics has completely changed my outlook on growing fresh produce for my family. While I still like getting my hands dirty in the flower bed, I have really enjoyed experimenting with this great aquaponics system in my own backyard.

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The Numerous Benefits That Aquaponics Offers

The Numerous Benefits That Aquaponics Offers

Aquaponics is actually a new approach to blend hydroponics with aquaculture, to produce a thing which has got the very best of the two techniques. Both of these methods generally have an unwanted toxic water build-up, which may lead to lost plant life as well as under-fed vegetation. This poisonous-water is incredibly harmful to the organic environment and can’t safely be dumped just any location, if it flows into a stream, the fauna could be at risk.

The manner in which this system is designed, makes it possible for fish to remove any kind of build-up of minerals and vitamins, that might after a while end up being poisonous, after which it redistributes it to the plants’ irrigation-system. The place that’s made is totally controllable, which allows enough warmth and lighting constantly. The fluids go through a procedure of filtering, that is typically created from fine volcanic-stone that is extremely porous.

The place in which the fish is kept, with all the nutrients it feeds, is adequate for many different fish to live comfortably in. The water-fish of course can be farmed too over longer periods of time, as populations grow and age. The plants produced has absolutely everything that it could need to grow effectively and sustainably over very long periods of time.

With all the world movements toward better methods to live sustainably along with nature, this device comes with excellent timing. It makes a far more complete habitat, utilizing wildlife with the plants, to coexists, and also benefit from one another. This concept is definitely shifting towards the entire idea of sustainably.

There is the option of growing amazing water plants with the fact that you have the pond there. Together all of it can make for an amazing greenhouse, adding many different aspects that not only look good, but work perfectly together. For those who love gardening and growing plants, let this expand that experience with the addition of fish to your layout.

There is no need for more water to be added, except a tiny bit for general evaporation, which can be done weekly usually. There is no need to add any chemicals to the system, it truly is a standalone product. Even the power for the pump is gathered from a solar panel usually, that can be installed, making it completely self reliant, with just a small addition of extra liquids needed.

The entire thing is quite small comparatively, allowing it to be installed in many smaller locations, such as roofs and small gardens. Aquaponics is the new best thing to fit almost all agricultural needs on smaller scales. It is very affordable seeing as there isn’t lots of continual expenses to worry about.

Keeping Your Vegetable Garden Going as the Weather Heats Up

Keeping Your Vegetable Garden Going as the Weather Heats Up

A vegetable garden is a real pleasure when you get a good start to it, but sometimes the weather takes a turn you just aren’t ready for. Things heat up fast and suddenly your perfect garden is wilting and dying.

It’s a painful thing to see, but don’t accept defeat immediately. You may still be able to save quite a bit of your garden.

The first thing is to stay very aware of your garden. This can be hard to do if you end up working extra hours and just kind of miss that the weather has changed and your plants need more water. But do your best.

I’ve had experience with this kind of thing, although it wasn’t from work. We went on vacation at a time when the summer had been extremely mild. While we were gone the weather turned unusually hot. We hadn’t arranged for anyone to give the garden extra water in that event, and so we came home to a nearly dead garden.

But if you catch these things soon enough, some of it can be salvaged. Try to give your vegetable garden at least an inch of water every week, especially as your vegetables grow.

I suggest getting a soaker hose. These allow you to put the water right onto the soil rather than spraying it into the air. You’ll still want to water first thing in the morning or in the evening so as to minimize evaporation, but doing this can help you to cut your water bill by not spraying so much water into the air.

This is especially good for squash and other plants that aren’t terribly fond of having water on their leaves. On the other hand, tomatoes do like water on their leaves, and you may want to use the sprinkler on them a little more.

One thing you will want to be aware of is how hot weather impacts the taste of the vegetables you harvest. Excessively hot weather can change the taste of crops such as broccoli and cauliflower, for example. Harvest as necessary to get the best produce from your garden. Some herbs may try to go to flower, but you can cut these off to try to continue their growth.

On the other hand, hot peppers love to grow in warm weather.

A hot spell doesn’t have to be a disaster for your garden. Be aware of the weather and start giving extra water before problems appear. You can continue to have a delightful vegetable garden that will survive the heat.

Stephanie Foster blogs at http://www.gardenmedley.com/gardening/ about her garden and how it grows. She offers more tips on successful vegetable gardening at her site.