How to Build an Aquaponics system: Gardening with Fish

Permaculture magazine
Sunday, 30th October 2011

Here's a good guide to building a home made hydroponic aquaponics system by Patti Moreno the Garden Girl.

Aquaponics is the growing of fish and plants in a controlled environment. It works on the basis that when fish live in a tank, the water starts to fill up with their waste which can make them ill. This dirty water is then transferred to your seedlings which are growing hydroponically (without water). The plants suck up all of the nutrients from the waste water thus cleansing it for the fish. Cleaning out the pet fish's tank can be such a chore so this could be the perfect solution for you!

The example on the video is an indoor system where you can oggle at your pretty fishes through glass while they feed your seedlings with poo but it could be easily be transferred outside into an opaque tank/pond or your seedlings could be kept by a window. One thing to note about this, she uses galvanised planters but changes them in a later video which is worth checking out. This is because zinc is poisonous to fish but you also wouldn't want to be eating fish that have consumed it so I would try using glass tanks or plastic containers instead!

Useful Resources

Ecological Aquaculture book - This practical and informative book describes how to create aquaculture systems that are not wasteful or polluting but are self-sustaining. 

Permaculture & Aquaponics DVD - Shot at Glen Martinez's Hawaiian smallholding that feeds 18 families, the principles and practices explained here are applicable everywhere.

More fun videos from Garden Girl TV

Aquaponic Worldcom |
Mon, 25/07/2011 - 03:44

There are limited places to purchase Aquaponic related products in the uk but one of the Uk's leading suppliers is called

Aquaponic Worldcom |
Wed, 16/05/2012 - 06:40

Here to help people in the UK with any of their Aquaponic queries. Please take a look at our website