Aquaponics Blog Posts

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How Does Aquaponics Work?

March 02, 20244 min read

Candy the Aquaponics Lady

How Does Aquaponics Work?

At it's fundamental core, aquaponics replicates the natural freshwater ecosystem, and brings it into a man-made design.

It is a sustainable form of gardening that uses fish to provide liquid fertiliser (ammonia) for the plants to use, and the plants filter the water for the fish.

There are many designs for aquaponics, and many sized systems that we can create from community food production aquaponics systems to mini benchtop systems.

They all have a purpose, and the key is, they all have the same fundamentals to be successful. Without the fundamentals, the aquaponics system will not work for long.

The 5 Key Things to Understand About Aquaponics:

1. Harmonious Balanced Relationship: Aquaponics creates a closed-loop system where fish and plants coexist together, using each other. Fish waste provides fertiliser for plants, and plants filter and clean the water for the fish.

2. Fish Tanks and Veggie Growing Areas: The system includes fish tanks where fish are kept and veggie growing areas where plants are grown. Nutrient-rich water from the fish tanks is circulated to the veggie growing areas (generally grow beds), providing nutrients for plant growth.

3. Biofiltration: Beneficial bacteria convert fish waste into fertiliser usable by plants. This process, known as biofiltration (biological filtration), involves the conversion of ammonia into nitrites and then nitrates, which serve as essential nutrients for plants.

4. Continuous Water Circulation: Water is continuously circulated from the fish tanks to the grow beds and back again using a pump system. This ensures a constant supply of water and fertiliser for both the fish and the plants.

5. Sustainability and Benefits: Aquaponics is a sustainable urban gardening method that conserves water, minimises waste, and requires no chemical fertilisers or pesticides. It offers benefits such as higher produce in a smaller space, faster plant growth, year-round production, and an activity to do with the kids to help them learn more about science and where food comes from.

Different Size Examples

home aquaponics system

This is a benchtop or Mini aquaponics system.

Basic fundamentals are there:

  • A fish tank,

  • filtration to convert fish waste into fertiliser and

  • a plant growing area.

indoor aquaponics

This is a cheap and easy indoor aquaponics system, growing veggies with the waste from my freshwater turtles.

Same concept, same process and parts needed, however the parts used are slightly different (bigger fish tank, different type of veggie growing area).

courtyard aquaponics

This one is a Courtyard Aquaponics system, with the same fundamentals, just using different parts to make it work.

Instead of a glass fish tank, the bottom barrel is a fish tank.

And a different veggie growing area.

aquaponics system

Again we are getting bigger systems, slightly different designs and equipment, however the fundamentals are the same.

  • Fish tank

  • Filters

  • Veggie growing area

  • and in this sized aquaponics system, there is a sump that collects all the water and pumps it back into the fish tank.

With the fundamentals staying the same, there are so many choices on how to make aquaponics work in your space.

Get the Visual on How Aquaponics Works

Check out My YouTube Channel 'Candy The Aquaponics Lady'

Aquaponics is an ecosystem, and with anything it takes time to learn how it works. So, sit back and binge watch my 'how to' playlist and the 'Water Quality Made Simple' Playlist, and learn the next steps in your aquaponics system as you create the ecosystem.

Here are the next 2 videos I recommend you watching to create your ecosystem ~ before you add any fish

How Aquaponics Works as an Ecosystem

How to Cycle Your Aquaponics System (How to colonise it with bacteria)


Want to get your Eyes and Hands on the FREE Online Aquaponics Essentials Course?

This is a great free resource to really understand how aquaponics is a sustainable ecosystem that will grow your organic food is a productive way.

You learn how all the 'parts' make up the 'whole', and helps to give you the foundations of understanding aquaponics.

Sign up HERE


Candy Alexander

Candy Alexander is a dedicated aquaponics enthusiast with a wealth of formal training in aquaculture. Over the past 15 years, Candy has been deeply immersed in both commercial and backyard aquaponics, honing her skills and expertise in this sustainable farming method.

Candy's passion lies in making aquaponics accessible to everyone. With a mission to simplify aquaponics, she believes that anyone can embark on this sustainable journey.

She encourages those new to aquaponics to "kick the tires" without a significant financial investment. Her guidance focuses on helping people start their aquaponics journey with small-scale systems, ensuring a low barrier to entry for newcomers.

Candy shares practical tips, step-by-step guides, and personal stories to inspire and guide readers on their aquaponics adventure. Whether you're a seasoned farmer or a curious beginner, Candy Alexander is your go-to source for simplifying aquaponics and fostering a sustainable gardening experience.

blog author image

Candy Alexander

Candy Alexander is a passionate aquaponics educator who believes in the philosophy of keeping things simple and close to nature. With over 15 years of experience in aquaponics and 4 years of formal training in aquaculture, Candy is determined to help people create sustainable gardening in their urban lifestyle. Additionally, she advocates for the therapeutic benefits of aquaponics, viewing it as a form of garden therapy for mental health. Through her expertise and dedication, Candy strives to make the intricate world of aquaponics accessible to all, fostering both environmental sustainability and personal well-being.

Back to Blog

Gardening Blogs

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How Does Aquaponics Work?

March 02, 20244 min read

Candy the Aquaponics Lady

How Does Aquaponics Work?

At it's fundamental core, aquaponics replicates the natural freshwater ecosystem, and brings it into a man-made design.

It is a sustainable form of gardening that uses fish to provide liquid fertiliser (ammonia) for the plants to use, and the plants filter the water for the fish.

There are many designs for aquaponics, and many sized systems that we can create from community food production aquaponics systems to mini benchtop systems.

They all have a purpose, and the key is, they all have the same fundamentals to be successful. Without the fundamentals, the aquaponics system will not work for long.

The 5 Key Things to Understand About Aquaponics:

1. Harmonious Balanced Relationship: Aquaponics creates a closed-loop system where fish and plants coexist together, using each other. Fish waste provides fertiliser for plants, and plants filter and clean the water for the fish.

2. Fish Tanks and Veggie Growing Areas: The system includes fish tanks where fish are kept and veggie growing areas where plants are grown. Nutrient-rich water from the fish tanks is circulated to the veggie growing areas (generally grow beds), providing nutrients for plant growth.

3. Biofiltration: Beneficial bacteria convert fish waste into fertiliser usable by plants. This process, known as biofiltration (biological filtration), involves the conversion of ammonia into nitrites and then nitrates, which serve as essential nutrients for plants.

4. Continuous Water Circulation: Water is continuously circulated from the fish tanks to the grow beds and back again using a pump system. This ensures a constant supply of water and fertiliser for both the fish and the plants.

5. Sustainability and Benefits: Aquaponics is a sustainable urban gardening method that conserves water, minimises waste, and requires no chemical fertilisers or pesticides. It offers benefits such as higher produce in a smaller space, faster plant growth, year-round production, and an activity to do with the kids to help them learn more about science and where food comes from.

Different Size Examples

home aquaponics system

This is a benchtop or Mini aquaponics system.

Basic fundamentals are there:

  • A fish tank,

  • filtration to convert fish waste into fertiliser and

  • a plant growing area.

indoor aquaponics

This is a cheap and easy indoor aquaponics system, growing veggies with the waste from my freshwater turtles.

Same concept, same process and parts needed, however the parts used are slightly different (bigger fish tank, different type of veggie growing area).

courtyard aquaponics

This one is a Courtyard Aquaponics system, with the same fundamentals, just using different parts to make it work.

Instead of a glass fish tank, the bottom barrel is a fish tank.

And a different veggie growing area.

aquaponics system

Again we are getting bigger systems, slightly different designs and equipment, however the fundamentals are the same.

  • Fish tank

  • Filters

  • Veggie growing area

  • and in this sized aquaponics system, there is a sump that collects all the water and pumps it back into the fish tank.

With the fundamentals staying the same, there are so many choices on how to make aquaponics work in your space.

Get the Visual on How Aquaponics Works

Check out My YouTube Channel 'Candy The Aquaponics Lady'

Aquaponics is an ecosystem, and with anything it takes time to learn how it works. So, sit back and binge watch my 'how to' playlist and the 'Water Quality Made Simple' Playlist, and learn the next steps in your aquaponics system as you create the ecosystem.

Here are the next 2 videos I recommend you watching to create your ecosystem ~ before you add any fish

How Aquaponics Works as an Ecosystem

How to Cycle Your Aquaponics System (How to colonise it with bacteria)


Want to get your Eyes and Hands on the FREE Online Aquaponics Essentials Course?

This is a great free resource to really understand how aquaponics is a sustainable ecosystem that will grow your organic food is a productive way.

You learn how all the 'parts' make up the 'whole', and helps to give you the foundations of understanding aquaponics.

Sign up HERE


Candy Alexander

Candy Alexander is a dedicated aquaponics enthusiast with a wealth of formal training in aquaculture. Over the past 15 years, Candy has been deeply immersed in both commercial and backyard aquaponics, honing her skills and expertise in this sustainable farming method.

Candy's passion lies in making aquaponics accessible to everyone. With a mission to simplify aquaponics, she believes that anyone can embark on this sustainable journey.

She encourages those new to aquaponics to "kick the tires" without a significant financial investment. Her guidance focuses on helping people start their aquaponics journey with small-scale systems, ensuring a low barrier to entry for newcomers.

Candy shares practical tips, step-by-step guides, and personal stories to inspire and guide readers on their aquaponics adventure. Whether you're a seasoned farmer or a curious beginner, Candy Alexander is your go-to source for simplifying aquaponics and fostering a sustainable gardening experience.

blog author image

Candy Alexander

Candy Alexander is a passionate aquaponics educator who believes in the philosophy of keeping things simple and close to nature. With over 15 years of experience in aquaponics and 4 years of formal training in aquaculture, Candy is determined to help people create sustainable gardening in their urban lifestyle. Additionally, she advocates for the therapeutic benefits of aquaponics, viewing it as a form of garden therapy for mental health. Through her expertise and dedication, Candy strives to make the intricate world of aquaponics accessible to all, fostering both environmental sustainability and personal well-being.

Back to Blog

Garden Therapy with Aquaponics Blogs Below

blog image

How Does Aquaponics Work?

March 02, 20244 min read

Candy the Aquaponics Lady

How Does Aquaponics Work?

At it's fundamental core, aquaponics replicates the natural freshwater ecosystem, and brings it into a man-made design.

It is a sustainable form of gardening that uses fish to provide liquid fertiliser (ammonia) for the plants to use, and the plants filter the water for the fish.

There are many designs for aquaponics, and many sized systems that we can create from community food production aquaponics systems to mini benchtop systems.

They all have a purpose, and the key is, they all have the same fundamentals to be successful. Without the fundamentals, the aquaponics system will not work for long.

The 5 Key Things to Understand About Aquaponics:

1. Harmonious Balanced Relationship: Aquaponics creates a closed-loop system where fish and plants coexist together, using each other. Fish waste provides fertiliser for plants, and plants filter and clean the water for the fish.

2. Fish Tanks and Veggie Growing Areas: The system includes fish tanks where fish are kept and veggie growing areas where plants are grown. Nutrient-rich water from the fish tanks is circulated to the veggie growing areas (generally grow beds), providing nutrients for plant growth.

3. Biofiltration: Beneficial bacteria convert fish waste into fertiliser usable by plants. This process, known as biofiltration (biological filtration), involves the conversion of ammonia into nitrites and then nitrates, which serve as essential nutrients for plants.

4. Continuous Water Circulation: Water is continuously circulated from the fish tanks to the grow beds and back again using a pump system. This ensures a constant supply of water and fertiliser for both the fish and the plants.

5. Sustainability and Benefits: Aquaponics is a sustainable urban gardening method that conserves water, minimises waste, and requires no chemical fertilisers or pesticides. It offers benefits such as higher produce in a smaller space, faster plant growth, year-round production, and an activity to do with the kids to help them learn more about science and where food comes from.

Different Size Examples

home aquaponics system

This is a benchtop or Mini aquaponics system.

Basic fundamentals are there:

  • A fish tank,

  • filtration to convert fish waste into fertiliser and

  • a plant growing area.

indoor aquaponics

This is a cheap and easy indoor aquaponics system, growing veggies with the waste from my freshwater turtles.

Same concept, same process and parts needed, however the parts used are slightly different (bigger fish tank, different type of veggie growing area).

courtyard aquaponics

This one is a Courtyard Aquaponics system, with the same fundamentals, just using different parts to make it work.

Instead of a glass fish tank, the bottom barrel is a fish tank.

And a different veggie growing area.

aquaponics system

Again we are getting bigger systems, slightly different designs and equipment, however the fundamentals are the same.

  • Fish tank

  • Filters

  • Veggie growing area

  • and in this sized aquaponics system, there is a sump that collects all the water and pumps it back into the fish tank.

With the fundamentals staying the same, there are so many choices on how to make aquaponics work in your space.

Get the Visual on How Aquaponics Works

Check out My YouTube Channel 'Candy The Aquaponics Lady'

Aquaponics is an ecosystem, and with anything it takes time to learn how it works. So, sit back and binge watch my 'how to' playlist and the 'Water Quality Made Simple' Playlist, and learn the next steps in your aquaponics system as you create the ecosystem.

Here are the next 2 videos I recommend you watching to create your ecosystem ~ before you add any fish

How Aquaponics Works as an Ecosystem

How to Cycle Your Aquaponics System (How to colonise it with bacteria)


Want to get your Eyes and Hands on the FREE Online Aquaponics Essentials Course?

This is a great free resource to really understand how aquaponics is a sustainable ecosystem that will grow your organic food is a productive way.

You learn how all the 'parts' make up the 'whole', and helps to give you the foundations of understanding aquaponics.

Sign up HERE


Candy Alexander

Candy Alexander is a dedicated aquaponics enthusiast with a wealth of formal training in aquaculture. Over the past 15 years, Candy has been deeply immersed in both commercial and backyard aquaponics, honing her skills and expertise in this sustainable farming method.

Candy's passion lies in making aquaponics accessible to everyone. With a mission to simplify aquaponics, she believes that anyone can embark on this sustainable journey.

She encourages those new to aquaponics to "kick the tires" without a significant financial investment. Her guidance focuses on helping people start their aquaponics journey with small-scale systems, ensuring a low barrier to entry for newcomers.

Candy shares practical tips, step-by-step guides, and personal stories to inspire and guide readers on their aquaponics adventure. Whether you're a seasoned farmer or a curious beginner, Candy Alexander is your go-to source for simplifying aquaponics and fostering a sustainable gardening experience.

blog author image

Candy Alexander

Candy Alexander is a passionate aquaponics educator who believes in the philosophy of keeping things simple and close to nature. With over 15 years of experience in aquaponics and 4 years of formal training in aquaculture, Candy is determined to help people create sustainable gardening in their urban lifestyle. Additionally, she advocates for the therapeutic benefits of aquaponics, viewing it as a form of garden therapy for mental health. Through her expertise and dedication, Candy strives to make the intricate world of aquaponics accessible to all, fostering both environmental sustainability and personal well-being.

Back to Blog

The relaxation you feel when your garden is well known. Aquaponics brings a deeper sense of calm as it connects you with the relaxation of fish as well.

Seeing the miracles of nature happening within your aquaponics system gives you a sense of wonder and excitement.

As everything about aquaponics is based on balance, it gives you the physical representation of balance to connect to when you feel overwhelmed by life.

I use aquaponics as a form of garden therapy to help me manage PTSD,

anxiety, depression, and autism.

Have you been thinking about a deeper meaning in life?

Aquaponics can show you this perfectly!

Check out the article below on how I manage my anxiety with aquaponics:

Managing My "Anxiety Octopus" with Aquaponics


Copyright 2023 | Candy Alexander | All Rights Reserved Email: ask@theaquaponicslady.com