If you are new to aquaponics then you may be wondering whether it is worthwhile introducing the aquaculture element to your growing system or whether you would be better just sticking with hydroponics. While hydroponic systems will have their uses in some instances, the average food produces will see that there are plenty of benefits to choosing an aquaponic system instead. To inspire you to take the plunge, here are some of the benefits of an aquaponics over hydroponics:
One of the main benefits of aquaponics when you compare it to a purely hydroponic system is that instead of getting only one yield – in the form of the plant crops that are grown – aquaponics systems deliver two yields simultaneously. An aquaponic system can deliver not only deliver high yields when it comes to plant crops but can also supply fish. This dual yield is a big advantage, allowing home growers and businesses to maximise yield in a given area. A well designed aquaponics system may even have additional yields, in the form of additional worms used to feed fish, for example, which can also be used in other ways on the property.
Growing food always requires resources – time, money, space, as well as inputs required for the system to function. Both hydroponic and aquaponic systems require water, oxygen and light. Additionally, an aquaponic system will require feed for fish or other aquatic creatures – though much of this can be supplied by the system when it is a well-designed one. However, by maximising yield over a given area, aquaponic systems can save on the resource of space and, being a lower input system in general as it does not require the nutrients that must be added in hydroponic systems, aquaponics can save on our planets resources as well as our own personal financial reserves.
Check out this helpful Youtube video by The School of Aquaponics
Due to the reduced input required in an aquaponic system and the natural symbiosis within such systems, due to the lower land use, lower water use and the potential for the use of renewable systems and energy sources, aquaponics can be a truly sustainable food-growth option for our changing world. Unlike hydroponics, which can raise issues with chemical fertiliser run-off, aquaponics systems retain the nutrient solution and there are no problems with toxic water disposal. Aquaponics systems, unlike hydroponic systems, are entirely organic.
Of course hydroponic systems have many advantages, but aquaponics are an evolution of the idea and offer a more holistic and natural approach to growing food.