By Christy Piña and Colleen McTiernan
Earth Day is fast approaching, and what better way to celebrate Mother Nature than teaching your children about aquaponics?
Aquaponics is a sustainable method of farming developed by the Aztecs. It combines fish cultivation with plant cultivation and does not require soil. The fish inside the tank produces nutrient-rich waste, then that waste is circulated to the plants, which use up the nutrients as the plants grow, and finally the filtered water drops back down to the fish in this closed-loop ecosystem. This method utilizes 90 percent less water than traditional farming methods, making it extremely eco-friendly!
For a small-scale, family friendly way to demonstrate to your little ones just how aquaponics works, consider setting up your own system at home. You can either DIY if you are feeling ambitious, or purchase a premade version, like the featured Water Garden 2.0 from Back to the Roots.
Use your water garden to grow the herbs you use most often and have your kiddos help harvest them once they are ready to use. Depending on the size of your tank, you may choose to keep a betta fish, as they require less space and should be kept separated from other fish.