Backyard aquaponics: DIY system to farm fish with vegetables

Backyard aquaponics: DIY system to farm fish with vegetables

Rob Torcellini bought a $700 greenhouse kit to grow more vegetables in his backyard. Then he added fish to get rid of a mosquito problem and before long he was a committed aquaponic gardener.

Now his 10 by 12-foot greenhouse is filled with not only vegetables but fish. And the best part is: the poo from that fish is what fertilizes his garden. Aquaponics combines fish farming (aquaculture) with the practice of raising plants in water (hydroponics).

It’s organic by definition: instead of using chemical fertilizers, plants are fertilized by the fish poo (and pesticides/herbicides can’t be introduced to kill pests because they could harm the fish). Since the plants don’t need dirt, aquaponics allows gardeners to produce more food in less space. And in addition to the vegetables they can grow, most aquaponics gardeners cultivate edible fish as well.

In this video, Rob shows us the aquaponics greenhouse in his Connecticut backyard, that he built mostly from scavenged parts, as well as his DIY indoor system where he’s growing lettuce under a grow light.

Bigelow Brook Farm:

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Kirsten Dirksen


What do you think?


Written by Aleksandar

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  1. Зачем в данном случае нужна аквапоника, если вокруг полно хорошей земли, не требующей дополнительных вложений? :-)))

  2. Old video but lady bugs or praying mantis will take care of aphids. Just don't hatch an entire sack inside the greenhouse due to the volume that the egg sack will produce. Too many bug eaters you'll run out of bugs and they will start eating leaf.

  3. Kirsten, was this a video on home aquaponics, on it's face but, really an advertisement for Dell Laptop Computers? If not your intention, that is what I saw when he pulled out that dust/dirt encrusted Laptop……still ticking away! It's funny since Michael Dell recently bought about 50% I believe of the pump company called "Hayward". I am aware of this from designing in Austin (Dell has 10-15,000 employees there) pools, landscapes, and I design Organic Farms, Intentional Communities, Lakes, ponds, water gardens, etc. for many years. If he would have been running his system with Hayward Pumps I would have suggested you send this video to Mr. Dell, as potential advertisement material. Pumps & Computers! Great work you do, thanks.

  4. I got dizzy when he said he can LOG IN to his green house. GEEK LEVEL 1000!!! I love it!!! How can I start my own?! 250 kuques in 1 year?!!! You sir, have won the internet!!!

  5. i intended to build a green house and i have a koi pond and your video inspired me to take the plan a step or 3 higher. your automation proves its achievable. gonna have to copy you.


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