Suburban Permaculture 20 miles from Washington DC

Backyard Aquaponics


This is my backyard Aquaponics setup.   Aquaponics is a growing method in which fish and plants are used to create a natural symbiotic relationship.  The fish create natural fertilizer and the plants uptake those nutrients while at the same time, the plants root’s filter and return fresh water back to the fish like a mini-ecosystem. Pesticides (even organic pesticides) can not be used because they would kill the fish. I wouldn’t put poison on my food anyway.

My setup has a 300 gallon fish tank (IBC Container) and two grow beds.  The grow beds are 20 feet long and 4 feet wide each.   They hold about a foot deep of water and there are rafts that float on top of the water in which the lettuce is planted.

At max capacity I could grow about 600 lettuce plants at one time or about 100 a week if I stagger the planting / harvest.  The lettuce looks and tastes amazing!  Never bitter and almost sweet.

20 ft long grow beds with about a 300 gallon fish tank in the wooden enclosure on the upper left.

Lettuce in rafts floating on top of water

Underneath the raft you can see the amazing lettuce roots loving the aquaponics water

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