Vertical Farm Daily - Tue 12 Jul 2022

Feeding communities with New Mexico's first commercial, vertical aquaponics farm Andrew Neighbour, owner of Desert Verde Farm in Santa Fe, has built an aquaponics indoor commercial farm that uses no chemical herbicides, pesticides, or other artificial additives to grow a variety of leafy greens, herbs, and microgreens that can be delivered the same day they are harvested. "Neighbour has created a zero-discharge system with no waste. It's a sustainable model for Northern New Mexico crop producers...
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Building for the Fish Nursery

On the generous advice of a friend and mentor, Pedro Casas-Cordero, I decided to follow his example and use the fish nursery as a source of nutrients for seedlings prior to their transplant to the main grow area. To keep a staggered rotation of tilapia, we must acquire new fingerlings every 2-3 months.  These 2-5 grams fish are too small to place in the large tanks in the fish house, so we must raise them for 2 months or so until they reach 50-100 grams in weight. So during this growth peri...
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And now the fun begins!

As the great jazz singer Etta James once sang "At last!" No phrase could have more relevance to my experience over the past two years riding a rollercoaster as I have tried to implement my dream —a commercial Aquaponics farm in Santa Fe, NM to provide a new local food source for our disadvantaged communities.. With phenomenal teaching and mentorship from Charlie Shultz and his colleagues, Pedro Casas and Abbey Torres at Santa Fe Community College, I set out on a journey to build a greenhouse and...
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Aquaponics - an ancient form of agriculture

In the previous blog, "What's in a name...", I discussed the meaning of "Hydroponics."  Aquaponics has some key similarities - they are both soil-less, and both typically are carried out in controlled environments, at least in temperate or cooler climates. In both, the roots are suspended in flowing water. But in aquaponics, the "aqua" doesn't really mean water.  Instead it's short for aquaculture (incidentally, also a misnomer!), that is, the growing of fish in aquaria or tanks. So wh...
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“What's in a name? that which we call a rose. By any other name would smell as sweet.”

So what is "Aquaponics?" And how does it differ from "Hydroponics?" After all they both share the root ponics, and don't aqua and hydro both have something to do with water?Let's get "ponics" out of the way first. "Ponics" has a Greek root, ponein, "to labor or toil." So in our vocabulary, it means work. Thus, a logical conclusion would be that they both are synonyms for "waterworks."But when we adopt terms to describe things, we bend or adapt definitions to differentiate what we are doing. Hydr...
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