This aquaponics system is a sustainable project that I had the pleasure of seeing as a student of the Orlando Permaculture Design Course. Our tour was led by Zak Marimon who owns his own business Agarian Land and Pond. This was a unique experience that displayed how much can be done right on your own property. Much of this project was done by recycling materials. Craigslist is a great place to find materials for cheap or even free. I was impressed by the creativity and great knowledge of science behind this project. I learned that chemistry plays a big part in creating a system as grand as this.
The system operates by pumping water from the fish tank into the Grow Beds and then pumping it back into the fish tank. It is a symbiotic relationship that benefits the fish and the plants. The fish wastes provide nutrients for the plants and waste plant materials feed the fish. The water is distributed through pipes that run through the Grow Beds. The fish water is filtered through sand, gravel, or river stones and then it is pumped back out to the fish tank. Tilapia are a great fish of choice because of their hardiness.
A variety of vegetables can be grown in the Grow Bed. It does take experimentation to get the right amount of nutrients to the plants. If done right, a bounty of produce will be harvested.
During the class, there was a demonstration of assembling a filtration system for the turtle tank.
I graduated from the Orlando Permaculture Design Course! Here are the garden designs I presented as part of our group project for the Simple Living Institute property. This video shows the butterfly and herb garden drawings I presented.