Occupy Your Backyard, New Aquaponics Association, and Plant Hardiness Zones Change

Occupy your Backyard

What is the best way to fight for the 99%? Grow healthy food for yourself, your family, and friends and help support freedom. Wether you support the Tea Party or Occupy Wall Street, aquaponics can make you more independent from corporate agriculture! Call it a Victory Garden or whatever else you want, growing your own food is empowering and allows you to have more control over your life. There is not a better time to start than right now. Email us if you are ready and need help! 

To Participate

The Newsletter for YOU

Kevin and Randy want this newsletter to be informative, educational, and inspiring. We could just tell you what is happening in the world of aquaponics, give you tips, and tell you how aquaponics can change the way we grow food. But we want it to be more than that. We want to hear from you! What do you want to know? What questions do you have? Do you have a great tip? Give us a call or email us and we will be sure to feature it in upcoming newsletters. After all, aquaponics is really about growing food for a community and we want to help build Santa Barbara's Aquaponics community. 

Water Quality Corner

Open Water Breeding Tanks: Some of the best methods to breen fish is to not put filters in and allow algae to grow to give you green water. Algae uses nutrients produced by the fish and provides an ideal 'first food' for many species of fish as they hatch from eggs and use up their yolk sac. While it may look unsightly, green water tanks are a standard method in aquaculture and can make the difference between success and failure in breeding. The water hyacinth on the surface aren't as efficient as algae so they shouldn't be bright green if the algae is thriving. If the hyacinth start to look dark green, your algae may be crashing and it is time for for some fresh water.

Aquaponics Association

Helping to spread the word about Aquaponics: All good movements have some larger organization which helps galvanize the message and get the word out. Now, Aquaponics has one. The Aquaponics Association wants to support members learning and create a community, just like us. Check out their website, go to their conference in Denver September 22nd and 23rd, or become a member.

Links to great articles

Just so you know what is going on, here we include links to articles and other sites where you can broaden your knowledge about food, fish, and sustainability

Essay: Should We Eat Fish? 
A good piece on the plight of the ocean and the dire nature of the world's fisheries. Should we keep eating seafood? Is traditional aquaculture the answer? Can fisheries management techniques such as catch shares be the solution? Read more to find out and then think about how aquaponics can be part of a sustainable solution.

Climate Change is Here: Plant Hardiness Zones Shifting
The USDA has released a new interactive GIS map of the US which helps gardeners and farmers select the best varieties of plants to grow based on their local climate. Here on the South Coast, we are in Zone 10a, but don't take our word for it, see for yourself.

Pic of the Month

IBC Totes waiting to be used. These 4' x 4' x 4' tanks are widely used to transport and store liquids of all kinds. In the hands of an aquaponics lover, they can be sliced into a top and bottom to get two useful containers. We have eight of these totes waiting to be used in our first commercial scale demonstration project. Demo project you ask? Well, we are in the planning stages but excited about the opportunity to expand our operation and build the system we want in a greenhouse environment. Stay tuned for details....

That's All For Now

Thanks for joining us again: Kevin and Randy have been very busy with our day jobs and sadly, have been letting our aquaponics work slip a little. Now that we've survived the holidays, we are rested up and ready to do more than ever. So stay with us, and be prepared to enjoy the ride as we prep our gear and get ready for what will surely be a grand greenhouse adventure.
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