I’m going to the bad side… or maybe the good side… or maybe the “I’m crazy side.” So, you know I grow worms and harvest their poo. You know I have 20+ houseplants to clean my home’s air. But, did you know I now have fish as slaves to grow my plants? Well, sorta.
Aquaponics is basically using fish poo (I know, I’m all about the poo!) to grow plants in a closed loop system. Basically, you have 2 tanks, one with plants and the other with fish. The plants grow by anchoring themselves to rock, NO SOIL, and being bathed in dirty fish poo water. The plants in turn, clean the water for the fish. They only thing you need to do is feed the fish and top off water that has evaporated. You can grow edible fish, like tilapia, or use a pet fish, as I’m doing now… a Betta.
Interesting aquaponics links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aquaponics
Why am I doing this? Well, in reality, I want to go much bigger, convert the basement to a space that can grow most of our veggie and fish needs (yes, I plan to EAT the tilapia). I want to know where my food comes from, know that it’s not sprayed with chemicals, grow locally (less gas wasted getting it from farm to store to me). In some ways, I’m in it for the environment (believe it or not, this uses LESS water than conventional farming and water is at a premium where we live). In other ways, I’m in it for the control (would my RA be better without pesticides on my food?)
Either way, I started reading about this last summer, and found this Aquafarm on a Kickstarter program. The farm arrived yesterday, I bought my fish today, and set the whole thing up, planting 4 cups of lettuce and 1 of basil. Hopefully I’ll start seeing plants in a few days.
What do you think? Am I crazy?