Matching Items (4)

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The Initial Feasibility of a Small Hydroponic Farm Startup in Austin, Texas

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This thesis will examine market research relating to consumer food trends and the business environment of Austin, Texas in order to evaluate the initial feasibility of establishing a small hydroponic

This thesis will examine market research relating to consumer food trends and the business environment of Austin, Texas in order to evaluate the initial feasibility of establishing a small hydroponic produce farm. A main concern of this report is to provide a general overview of hydroponics and its potential advantages over traditional farming methods as a technique for producing food products for consumers in a local setting. To explore the potential of establishing such a venture, this report will also include a partial business plan focusing on the marketing strategy of initiating a hydroponic produce farm in Austin.

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Date Created
  • 2015-05

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Reenvisioning Victory Gardens for Food Deserts

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Abstract
Local organic gardening once experienced great popularity with Americans. At one time promoted and prominent, local gardens became obscure, old-fashioned, and outmoded. However, in the last few decades, for

Abstract
Local organic gardening once experienced great popularity with Americans. At one time promoted and prominent, local gardens became obscure, old-fashioned, and outmoded. However, in the last few decades, for various reasons, local organic gardening has made some progress. This study seeks to assist high-density, low-income, inner-city Americans, who often do not have have easy or affordable access to fresh whole food by creating sustainable, resilient, local, urban gardens. However, this effort does not attempt to address the needs of entire populations of census tracts, rather one suburban home, one small apartment complex, or one small community garden. O​ ne solution to the problems associated with food insecurity is to put the creativity and responsibility into the hands of those who need the food, allow them to work within a self-sustaining garden, and decide what to do with any excess food. W​ ith the help of Greg Peterson, Phoenix’s own urban farmer, this project set out to create a system using Phoenix’s limited amount of rainfall to create a aquaponic gardening system which will be used in micro-communities such as multi-family complexes, middle schools, or high schools, in order to help grow food for these communities and alleviate some of the difficulties of finding fresh food in the desert.

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Date Created
  • 2018-05

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Analysis of Nitrogen Uptake in a Duckponics System

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Duckponics is an unconventional form of aquaponics that has recently been implemented by a small community in Washington State as an experiment in sustainable methods of food production. The community

Duckponics is an unconventional form of aquaponics that has recently been implemented by a small community in Washington State as an experiment in sustainable methods of food production. The community created the Duckponics system to test the possibility of using the waste of ducks present on the farm to fertilize crop plants. This research paper examines aspects of the nitrogen cycle within this system to determine the efficacy of nitrogen removal by plants and microbes. More specifically, the research examines (1) the microbial activity occurring in selected beds of the system, (2) the ability of hydroponic grow beds to retain inorganic nitrogen, and (3) how periodic flushing of the system affects nitrogen retention. Water data was collected in all system tanks using aquarium test strips, but water samples were collected for flow injection analysis in (1) one of the grow beds, (2) the duck pond, and (3) a control bed with no plants but filled with gravel and inoculated with the same bacteria from the grow bed. Samples were then analyzed for ammonia (NH4+-N) and combined nitrite and nitrate (NOx-N) concentrations. The results show that the treatment type (control, duck pond, or grow bed) was a significant (p<0.05) predictor of NH4+-N, NOx-N, and total inorganic nitrogen (TIN) in the porewater of the treatment beds. The grow bed was found to have 100% removal of TIN, whereas the control had 0% TIN removal (195% increase). Timing of the sample in relation to the flushing events was a moderately significant predictor of TIN, NH4+-N and NOx-N in the duck pond (p = 0.07 for TIN, p = 0.12 for NH4+-N, p = 0.11 for NOx-N), with an overall decrease in TIN after flood pulses. NH4+-N concentrations at the inlet and outlet were found to be significantly different in the grow bed (p=0.037), but not the control, and moderately significantly different (p<0.15) for NOx-N and TIN in the grow bed (p=0.072 for NOx-N, p=0.075 for TIN), but significant for the control (p=0.043). These findings show evidence of nitrification in the grow bed and control, plant presence significantly contributing to nitrogen removal in the grow bed, and some hydrologic flushing of NOx-N out of the duck pond during pump cycles.

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Date Created
  • 2016-05