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Growing Chili Peppers in Aquaponics Gardens
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Chili peppers are known for their heat, with jalapenos and habaneros as the most popular spicy peppers to add to food. Growing chili peppers in an outdoor garden can be somewhat troublesome for those who live in an area with inconsistent day and nighttime temperatures. This is why many people are turning their attention to growing chili peppers in aquaponics gardens. Aquaponics setups give them better control over temperatures, soil conditions, water levels, and the pH of the water.
In this article, we will discuss how to cultivate chili peppers in your aquaponics setup so you can enjoy these zesty spices on a regular basis.
What Are Chili Peppers?
Originally from South America, the chili pepper is a member of the nightshade family, Solanaceae, and the Capsicum genus. Other members of the nightshade family are tomatoes, cherries, and eggplants Chili peppers have been cultivated in Peru and Mexico since prehistoric times and have been used as a medicine, spices, or even vegetables to be used in cooking. Capsaicin from chili peppers can be used to treat headaches and migraines, slow the spread of cancer, and more.
Types Of Aquaponics Systems
There are three types of aquaponic systems: deep water culture, media-filled beds, and nutrient film technique. Deepwater culture systems are better for warmer climates and are inexpensive. The roots of the plant float in the water about 1 foot in depth.
Media-filled-beds are composed of either gravel or a specific type of clay used to support plant roots and are filled with nutrient-rich water. Media beds are best for beginners but require more cleaning.
Water Temperature For Chili Peppers
Typically, gardeners can create hotter chili peppers by stressing the plants by not watering them as often, but the point of an aquaponic garden is to grow plants in water. Hotter peppers are more tolerant of warmer water than other peppers, as other pepper types will end up deformed if the temperature of the water is over 26.6°C.
If the water is too cold, then the heat won’t stimulate the pepper growth, so the best temperature to keep the water for best pepper growth is anywhere from 15.5°C to 23.8°C. Chili peppers prefer a water pH between 5.5 and 6.5. If you are looking for a quality pH meter check out these options.
Nutrients And Fish
Growing chili peppers in aquaponics gardens require nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, and magnesium for nutrients. Fish are an integral part of any aquaponic system. Their waste provides nutrients for the plants. Some of the best fish for aquaponics systems are tilapia, catfish, prawns, and perch.
Once you have decided to do aquaponics gardening, be sure to research which system is best for you and your needs, as well as how to set it up and maintain it. Before you choose your fish, you should research each fish and determine if the fish are just for the garden, or for food as well. Once set up, you are well on your way to growing chili peppers in your aquaponics garden.
Where to Buy Chili Pepper Seeds