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Learning Center Will Share Aquaponics Tips

Malama Learning Center will conduct an Introduction to Aquaponics workshop from 9 to noon April 7 at Kapolei High School.

The workshop is designed to share with participants the basics of aquaponics – a food production system that involves growing fish and plants together. It also will introduce the mechanics of creating an aquaponics system.

Charlie Palumbo of Aquapono, who has his own backyard aquaponics system and also has set one up at the high school, will teach the workshop.

“(Participants) will be learning about aquaponics systems and how that works,” explained Janice Staab, the center’s education coordinator, “and then they also will learn how to set up their own aquaponics systems in their backyards.”

Aquaponics systems are beneficial to both the fish and the plants, Staab explained.

“There are tanks that hold the fish, then there is a grow bed,” Staab said. “The water in the fish tank is pumped out to the gravel bed where the plants grow. Because the fish are in that water, it’s very nutrient rich …

“Those nutrients actually feed the plants and clean out the water in the bed, and the water goes right back out into the fish tank, so it actually saves a lot of water.”

Staab explained that aquaponics systems can be applied to a wide range of different types of plants.

“Aquaponics is great for schools, because there is a lot of science involved,” she added.

The workshop costs $10 per person, or $25 for families of up to three people. Registration is required. There is no deadline to register, but the workshop is limited to 25 participants.

Starter kits will be available for purchase at the workshop.

For more information, email janice@malamalearningcenter.org or call 542-9107.