Nikhil and Alejandro, the two guys who brought mushroom growing kits to the masses, are back with a new project. They’re currently trying to do for aquaponics gardening what they did with for growing your own mushrooms with their latest Kickstarter project. They imagine these systems being used in home and classrooms across the country.
Aquaponics--the mashup of aquaculture and hydroponics--has been rising in popularity in recent years. But is hasn't been able to break through the subcultures of hackers, small farmers, and hobbyists to go mainstream.
The Aquaponics Garden by Nikhil and Alejandro may be the device that finally makes aquaponics accessible to the average person. Unlike previous attempts at an off-the-shelf aquaponics system, it’s attractive enough to warrant a closer look and small enough to fit in your kitchen.
Watch the Aquaponics Garden Video
How does it work? It’s a closed-loop system where the fish growing in the aquarium provides nutrients for the herbs and vegetables growing above it. And the plants clean the water that’s circulated back into the tank for the fish.
They’re still trying to figure out some of the manufacturing details, and the $100,000 goal has been chipped away some as of this writing. You can donate with as little as $1, but a $50.00 donation will get you a pre-order (33% off the planned retail price) of the Aquaponics Garden.
Could you hack together something similar or larger and more efficient? Sure, but the product isn’t aimed at those of us who do or can. If we want to increase the number of people who are growing their own food, we need products like this that make the movement palatable to many.