This is a special guest post from Brian Filipowich, Director of Anacostia Aquaponics. To keep getting great content from guests like him, make sure you check out our vertical farming newsletter.
Aquaponics epitomizes the beauty of the closed loop production model, but it’s a little hard to get into. Here, Brian walks you through the easiest way to get up and running with decent yields from a DIY aquaponics system for your living room.
Want information beyond the blog? Sign up for our free newsletter. In case you missed the announcement, here’s the first article in the series on starting my vertical farm.
I was between a passive greenhouse and a refurbished garage. How did I decide?
When I started researching how I was going to take the next steps with this project, the very first question that popped into my head was “Where am I going to do this?” Initially, I was set on a large, dense city. After all, it’s what I’d been writing about for years and what has been demonstrated to work.
Of course, after talking with everyone that I’ve talked to, I learned that land and initial equipment investment were the largest expenditures for vertical farms. And I didn’t want to be like one of the many failed farms that threw a bunch of space and money at the business and walked away bankrupt like Alterrus.
I spend a lot of time looking at Google data to see specifically what people are interested in for vertical farming. Resoundingly, it’s how to do it and how much it costs. But unfortunately, asking any professional in the field right now those questions is like pulling teeth. No one wants to talk, no one wants to answer them.
To be fair, part of that is because they’re extremely hard questions. I know because I’ve been asked them. Often people write vague emails with just a rough sketch of an idea in mind and expect me to do all the legwork for them. However, because each situation for a farm is so different (where are you doing it? what kind of space do you have access to? who are you selling to? etc.), it becomes impossible to answer.
People are of course resoundingly polite and friendly about it, but it feels like you never walk away with enough information. I want to change that. While I already made this announcement on my email list (if you haven’t signed up already, check it out – there’s more early access announcements and even more content you’ll get there than what’s on the site), I want to put it out here as well.
I finally finished a deal on a space to start my own commercial hydroponics farm.
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The “Impact Farm” is a 2 story DIY vertical farm that packs into a shipping container. Designed by Human Habitat’s Ronnie Markussen and Mikkel Kjær, this is a beautiful example of shipping container design that increases production while still gaining the flexibility inherent in modular design.
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Succulents are one of the easiest plants to create a small-scale green wall with. I’ve pulled together some of the best info on succulents and some awesome DIY projects to get you started. I’ve seen a lot of professionals using similar designs on contracts for clients as well. There’s something for everyone!