ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Aquaponic farming is on the up swing

Updated on April 23, 2014

A cool example of just how simple it is.

This is such a cool example of scale-ability and the process.
This is such a cool example of scale-ability and the process. | Source

Aquaponics ancient and New Age

What is Aquaponics?

Aquaponics is an organic type of sustainable agriculture and fish farming combination. It is a synergistic approach to raising food. Aquaponics is a combination of Aquaculture (raising fish) and Hydroponics (water only plant farming) Aquaponics is a symbiotic relationship between plants and fish that creates a sustainable and speedy production of fish, fruits, vegetables and herbs. Water is rotated between where fish create a fertilized water and the plants use that water and create clarified water for the fish. There are some bacteria involved to remove ammonia but otherwise it is fully a closed loop system like a tiny ecosphere unto its own.

For clarification from,


[ak-wuh-kuhl-cher, ah-kwuh-] noun the cultivation of aquatic animals and plants, especially fish, shellfish, and seaweed, in natural or controlled marine or freshwater environments; underwater agriculture.

hy·dro·pon·ics [hahy-druh-pon-iks] noun ( used with a singular verb )the cultivation of plants by placing the roots in liquid nutrient solutions rather than in soil; soilless growth of plants. Compare aeroculture, geoponics.

And so Aquaponics is the combination of the two.

Rendering of how awesome the Aztec aquaponics were.

I just imagine!
I just imagine! | Source

Not New but not old.

A little fun history to put it in perspective.

Think of a rice paddy, it is fully a “wet” environment and usually with constant water of depth. The smart farmer will also have fish in his rice paddy and raise them also. The fish help the plants by pooping and the plants help the fish by cleaning up the poop.

One of the favorites are the Aztecan floating islands from around Mexico City area. Legend has it some of the islands housed 100 and grew trees as tall as two story buildings, and just floated in the lake. “Chinampas” is a word associated with that concept.

Those to would be examples of Aquaponics in a large setting.

What is really cool to note here is that the aquaponic notion is really just doing it like nature does it anyway. Of course in nature there is water with aquatic life and next to or in the water grow plants of all the varities in the world.

From a distance needs to look the same as up close!

Just think of Nature and how perfect it is, we can mimic that!

Take it “Enaturally”, a look at nature.

There is a bare foot bare chested boy with a stick fishing pole and a shiny bucket by his side. He is in an arid land let us call it Arizona. But in the arid land is a creek that runs through a narrow canyon. That is where the boy sits with his pole but more interested in the dragonfly, butterflies and bees at the moment. The babbling brook has trout in it, rainbow trout and minnows and frogs and turtles and an invasive Crayfish. In the water, Watercress grows along with Horsetail grass and little lichens and algae. All of this edible in some fashion for the boy. Creeping down to the banks is wild grass and blackberry bushes and wonderful fresh dandelions with leaves the size of his hand. Along the bank are also trees growing tall and some new and young. There are wild sunflowers and all types of wildflowers nearby. Birds and insects flutter from one to another and over to the small orchard of a variety of fruit.

All these things work in a symbiotic synergistic relationship to create paradise as we would know it on earth. But if not dramatically abused or over harvested the serene landscape also provides for an abundance of food for man.

That my friends is aquaponics at it’s finest. Now let us put that to use to create a powerful or mild food producing system of our own.

How cool is this?

We can do so much and so much more.
We can do so much and so much more. | Source

Let us get practical.

So you are going to start a farm.

You are going to need some stuff but first let us look at what you will do if you choose.

Promote healthy living and with it agro-tourism for your “garden” will be an attraction.

Sell produce to consumers, restaurants, farmers markets and produce markets and wholesale.

Promote sustainable farming and conservation and ecology – even a basic notion of recycling.

Create jobs, for machines can provide but people must take care of the crops.

Use up to 90% less water than conventional farming.

Create clear good oxygen to our world

Produce up to ten times more food per square feet than conventional farming.

Team with schools and teach about healthy food and alternative production.

Costs of start up.

How much you spend is up to you. A good 140 ft by 40 greenhouse with all the infrastructure is going to cost you about 200 thousand dollars. It should be paying for itself in six months. We have been doing startups for 3 decades now and this is the first we have seen that is actually realistic at that estimate. That is because you can actually grow a full crop of lettuce in one month and the idea for construction is more like Legos than a house or office building.

Now do not get me wrong. You can get “portable” green houses on a smaller scale and you can actually build all this stuff yourself. An associate is actually doing a fully operational one in TJ by hand – no problem and fun. A “portable greenhouse just means one without a foundation and throughout the lands very little permitting is required for such and they can actually just go in a back yard.

Or you can forget the green house all together, they even have some made on wheels. The concept is totally scalable as is obvious from the photo.

You could actually just dig a ditch with a shovel buy used pvc piping and a used pump and be well on your way to a profit center – (scalable albeit ;-)

Of course there are other materials and you have got to filter most water unless you have that babbling brook running through your land.

You do need some land but heck you can do this in a warehouse district or out in the boonies.

Will you please?

Do you support organic sustainable farming by buying the products?

See results

Why aquaponics

For instances:

California is suffering the worst drought in recorded history. And 80% of its’ water goes to agriculture.

Synthetic fertilizers and genetically altered stuff are yuckie.

21,000 people die each day because of “starvation and water” related issues, in this world.

We need you people to either do or support this type of farming. It can save lives and our planet in serious ways. Even just focusing on herbs and spices that can be curative and preventative of such things as cancer can make them more available and help many. The world needs less mechanization and more human hands on work with our foods, leading to human productivity and that is good for all. The world needs to use much less water and treat the water we do use with respect.

My vision and it is in the works are green houses surrounded by conventional organic farming outside and in open space, drought resistant horticulture. And all surrounded by fruit trees as wind breaks, aesthetics and production.

(a fun story to end with – I went to planning and zoning and told them what I was going to do, the lady looked at me and called in another planner and said “what the hell is he talking about?”. Well so much for breezing through the permit phase but now 5 hours of talking later and the whole department is a buzz and knows my name and asks questions – good things bring good things.)


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Thank you Ms. Williams your presence and comment are most appreciated.

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      Aquaponic farming, water only plant farming, this is the first time I've heard of this. Very beautiful picture and interesting concept! I actually like the creativity of this method of farming. I like Judy Collins, She has such a soothing voice! Thanks for sharing! Voted up!

    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Eddy I think we will see more and more, I am learning of a another interesting one where there is only a fine mist involved.

    • Eiddwen profile image


      4 years ago from Wales

      A very interesting read Eric and thanks for sharing.


    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      thanks much Gus, that is very cool. I will research that salt water concept as we have issues with coastal desert fresh water wells,the water is horrible with alkaline. Perhaps blending could produce a solution. I imagine the Asian catfish would go crazy in the saltwater blend.

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      Hi Eric - We did this sort of thing back in 1949 at the Plant Physiology Dept. of the NY State College of Forestry. Used clean sand to anchor the plants and aqueous chemical solutions to feed 'em.

      Also, a hydroponics farmer from Florida clued me in on his not-so-secret hydroponics large-scale farming "feeding" method - dilute sea water 9 to 1 with plain water and grow the plants in it. (Lots of minerals and trace elements for the plants)



    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      I am told that you can go and build one being simple with just floaty stuff on top of a big tank. But also told just to go on line and buy one all set.

    • rebeccamealey profile image

      Rebecca Mealey 

      4 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

      Great information. Very important to know about Aquaponics. I would love to learn how to make the Aquaponic fish tank you show in the first picture. Thanks!

    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Lady, I just have to know, did he still go swimming in the pool? And it made me wonder, can you drink it right out of the pool? That costing is a tricky deal as the market fluctuates just like conventional farming and yet niches can make it where an ounce of the product is worth a lot.

      Thanks for coming by and chatting.

    • grand old lady profile image

      Mona Sabalones Gonzalez 

      4 years ago from Philippines

      I knew a man who used his swimming pool for aquaponics. He raised bangus and it was his personal food as well as a business. He also grew all his own vegetables. Before, organic food was very expensive, but now it's more affordable and easier to support this lifestyle Great hub. Upped and shared.

    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Thank you my friend. I think we will get it down to where it will be very helpful in areas like yours. Get one for your home!

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 

      4 years ago from New Delhi, India

      This is a brilliant idea, Aquaponic farming and I am getting interested. I do have an aquarium at my home.

      Very nice information shared by you. Thanks!

    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Me too Nadine, Maybe we can get them all set up for us ;-)

    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Dora just talked to me eldest (daughter in DC) she said it was disgusting. By the end she is looking into buying one for her brownstone.

    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Lastheart, thank you for that great suggestion -- I will be on it tonight.

    • Nadine May profile image

      Nadine May 

      4 years ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      Oh if only my day had 48 hours, I would also take on Aquaponic farming as a hobby. I love the first photo, seeing that it can be done on a small scale. Very interesting hub. Voted up

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      4 years ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks for teaching me that word -- aquaponics. Proud of you for teaching it to your planning/zoning folks also. Go Eric!

    • ologsinquito profile image


      4 years ago from USA

      Very interesting and I like the historical examples you cited. Voted up and shared.

    • Lastheart profile image

      Maria Magdalena Ruiz O'Farrill 

      4 years ago from Borikén the great land of the valiant and noble Lord

      Very good idea! I love it. Billy's bamboos and now your aquaponic made me feel green.

      May I suggest, as a friend, to insert a Goggle map for the Aztecan floating islands, I had to leave your hub and search it. This hub is really good.

    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      I am waiting until you and Bev get that farm before I come and visit!!! I am sure it will incorporate all this cooool stuff.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I actually took a college course in this back in the mid-Seventies...and most definitely it is on the upswing.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)