There are various methods for growing plants without soil. These are hydroponics - the supply of nutrient solution to the plant roots, aeroponics - spraying the nutrient composition on the plant roots and agroponics - growing fish and plants together in an aquarium, pool or other closed system.
What is agroponics
The agroponics method is of great interest for small household farms and, at the same time, is widely used in industrial farms. The joint keeping of fish and plants in one biosystem allows increasing production efficiency and reducing material and labor costs. Products can be received all year round. There is no need to install expensive nutrient solution systems.
Agroponics is based on the same principle of hydroponics, growing plants without soil. Only plant nutrition is obtained from the water in which the fish live. In an aquarium that contains fish, their metabolic products accumulate, which contain substances necessary for the development of plants. These substances can be used for growing vegetables and other crops (for example, strawberries), as nutrients.
With traditional methods of cultivation in soil, nitrates form the basis of nitrogen nutrition for plants. Even when only ammonium forms of fertilizers are introduced into the soil, plants still feed on nitrates and accumulate them, which is harmful to human health. The fact is that the lack of air in the soil and the lack of moisture quickly convert ammonium into nitrates. What doesn't happen in an aquarium or pool.
Many crops, tomatoes, cucumbers, strawberries, strawberries, and salads are grown in closed water supply systems. Typically, industrial complexes have complex designs, but for home use, you can use a container made of transparent glass. If you want to grow large fish, such as carp, the container should be 1.5 meters in length, width and depth. It is 83% filled with water. Algae are planted at the bottom and fish are launched. Due to photosynthesis of algae, the water is enriched with oxygen.
Plants are placed on top in a hydroponic system that takes up 15% of the tank's volume. The hydroponic system is a plastic honeycomb structure-platform in which the roots of plants are protected by a fine mesh, which protects them from being eaten by fish. In the center there is a hole for feeding fish. Between the platform and the water there is an air space of 2 centimeters, which does not allow plant roots to rot.
The effectiveness of the method depends on the correct ratio of the number of plants and fish. The nutrients that are formed from the waste products of fish must be sufficient for plant nutrition.