There is some fishy activity going on at Tucson Botanical Gardens – aquaponics! We’ve teamed up with Local Roots Aquaponics to host a basic system near the Native Crops Garden.
What exactly is aquaponics? Aquaponics is an efficient and productive method of food production that combines aquaculture (raising fish) and hydroponics (growing plants in water with nutrients) in a contained and balanced ecosystem. The fish’s outputs feed the plants, and the plants’ roots filter the water for the fish. Then the cycle repeats.
Additionally, these aquaponics systems are extremely efficient to operate: only 35 watts of electricity plus the energy from the sun to grow the plants! In terms of water usage, modern aquaponics requires 90% less water than traditional farming and the plants grow twice as fast.
Watch the vegetables and fish grow over the summer and maybe even feed the fish when you visit. The Gardens’ system is complete with White Nile Tilapia fish and plenty of tasty tomatoes, peppers, basils and other desert-adapted vegetable plants.
Ask at the gift shop if you would like to feed the fish!
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