Santa Barbara Aquaponics

A very warm welcome to Santa Barbara Aquaponics.  My name is Kevin Childerley.  My Original goal was to build an Aquaponic system that was a living laboratory.

Three years later, I have built two other systems.  The first system is an Aquaponic system that uses Hydraton and raft technology. The Second system is a closed loop Aquaculture system.  The third system is a Vermiponic/Hydroponic/Biodyamic closed loop system.

Email me if you are interested in tours and workshops kevin@santabarbaraaquaponics.com

Aquaponics- A Sustainable Farming Method for the Future

Aquaponics is a combination of Aquaculture and Hydroponics.  Fish and plants are raised in a symbiotic relationship with one another where nutrients are cycled between species, in this case fish and plants. The water from the fish tank (and the nutrients the fish produce) flows to a separate tank where plants grow. The plants roots filter out the nutrients and the water is pumped back to the fish, cleaner than when it left the fish tank. Fish waste and decomposing fish food (which would prove toxic to the fish )  is used by the growing plants as liquid fertilizer.   Aquaponics systems, can grow great tasting vegetables, and to a lesser amount, fish. And by growing fish more sustainably, we can lessen the burden on the world’s oceans and depleted fish populations. With aquaponics  still only a few decades old, and advanced coming faster than ever, the future for aquaculture, and hydroponics, is brighter than ever, but it’s now called aquaponics.

Chinampas and Aquaponics in History

Long, long before the word aquaponics was ever spoken, “Chinampas” were built by the Aztecs in Mexico City.  These were known as the floating gardens and had high crop yields.  Chinampas were built as island plots or rafts  in the lakes surrounding the city and fertilized with nutrient-rich lake water and mud.  As the plants on the rafts grew, their roots would dangle in the water.

In  China, some farmers grew Aquaponically, using ducks, finfish, catfish, and raising rice and vegetables in a flow-through system.

The hanging Gardens of Babylon are now believed to be an example of ‘Aquaponic’ farming. All these examples, even from ancient history, used fish to accelerate the growth of vegetables.

Whether you’re pursuing a commercial Aquaponic farming venture or you just want to grow food in your own back yard, you will be richly rewarded with this fascinating subject.  Enjoy!