Aquaponics is a sustainable food production method, whereby plants and fish are grown and raised in a symbiotic closed loop system.
The fish provide nutrients through feces to the plants and the plants filter out toxins through oxidation. Hydroponic and aquaculture farming techniques form the basis for all aquaponics systems, the size, complexity, and types of foods grown in an aquaponics system can vary as much as any system found in either distinct farming discipline.
A combination of fish and plant production using aquaculture and hydroponics systems, aquaponics is moving from the realm of experimental to commercial. Learn more about this production system and if it might be right for your backyard garden or farming operation.
Hydroponics is a subset of hydroculture, the method of growing plants without soil, using mineral nutrient solutions in a water solvent.
Terrestrial plants may be grown with only their roots exposed to the mineral solution, or the roots may be supported by an inert medium, such as perlite or gravel.
The nutrients in hydroponics can come from an array of different sources; these can include but are not limited to byproduct from fish waste, duck manure, or normal nutrients. There are two main variations for each medium, sub-irrigation and top irrigation. Learn more about this production system and if it might be right for your backyard garden or farming operation.
Tired of Mowing? Want to reduce green house gases emitted by lawn mowers? Want to help the Honey Bee, and other pollinators?
Try These Plants and Ground covers. Discover a wide array of good-looking plants you can use as grass substitutes.
Of these types, some of the most common groundcovers include: , Alfalfa (Medicago sativa) , Clover (Trifolium) , Dichondra , Bacopa (Bacopa) , Ivy (Hedera) , Gazania (Gazania rigens) , Ground-elder (Aegopodium podagraria) , Ice plant, Japanese honeysuckle (Lonicera japonica), Junipers of various low-growing types, Lantana, creeping species, Lilyturf (Liriope muscari and Liriope spicata), Mint (Mentha), Nasturtium (Tropaeolum majus), Pachysandra , Pearlwort (Sagina subulata) , Periwinkle (Vinca) , Shasta daisy (Leucanthemum) , Soleirolia (Soleirolia soleirolii) , Spider plant (Chlorophytum comosum)
There are many alternatives to grass, and for the urban gardener looking to amend soil. You can even qualify for state grants to grow clover and other cover that attract pollinators. Learn more about this production system and if it might be right for your backyard garden or farming operation.
Rainwater harvesting is the accumulation and deposition of rainwater for reuse on-site, rather than allowing it to run off.
Rainwater can be collected from rivers or roofs, and in many places, the water collected is redirected to a deep pit (well, shaft, or borehole), a reservoir with percolation such as a rain barrel, or collected from dew or fog with nets or other tools.
Its uses include water for gardens, livestock, irrigation, domestic use with proper treatment, indoor heating for houses, etc.
The harvested water can also be used as drinking water, longer-term storage, and for other purposes such as groundwater recharge. A large body of work has focused on the development of lifecycle assessment and lifecycle costing methodologies to assess the level of environmental impacts and money that can be saved by implementing rainwater harvesting systems.
Anaerobic digestion is a collection of processes by which micro-organisms break down biodegradable material in the absence of oxygen. The process is used for industrial or domestic purposes to manage waste or to produce fuels.
Anaerobic digestion is widely used as a source of renewable energy. The process produces a biogas, consisting of methane, carbon dioxide and traces of other ‘contaminant’ gases. This biogas can be used directly as fuel, in combined heat and power gas engines or upgraded to natural gas-quality biomethane. The nutrient-rich digestate also produced can be used as fertilizer.
With the re-use of waste as a resource and new technological approaches that have lowered capital costs, anaerobic digestion has in recent years received increased attention among governments in a number of countries, among these the United Kingdom, Germany, and Denmark. Anaerobic digesters can be designed and engineered to operate using a number of different configurations and can be categorized into batch vs. continuous process mode, mesophilic vs. thermophilic temperature conditions, high vs. low portion of solids, and single stage vs. multistage processes.
Using anaerobic digestion technologies can help to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases in a number of key ways: Replacement of fossil fuels , Reducing or eliminating the energy footprint of waste treatment plants , Reducing methane emission from landfills , Displacing industrially produced chemical fertilizers , Reducing vehicle movements , Reducing electrical grid transportation losses , Reducing usage of LP Gas for cooking