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永續農業: Riverbend's aquaponics project in Gladwyne

永續農業的範例

Riverbend's aquaponics project in Gladwyne

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Given its location on a steep, densely wooded hillside at the very edge of Lower Merion Township, Riverbend Environmental Education Center’s 30-acre preserve in Gladwyne is not the most likely place to picture a modern-day farming operation.

But that is exactly what is expected to be up and running there by early next summer.

And given Riverbend’s mission to protect this gem of open space while helping area residents – young and older – to appreciate and better understand their place in the balance of nature, it should not be surprising that the farm it has in mind will be a model of sustainability.

Nearing the end of a major capital campaign, the center expects to go to bid this month for construction of a large greenhouse to contain an aquaponics project. The facility which will be the focus of new educational programs, is expected to be in operation for the start of summer camps in 2014 – and for Riverbend’s 40th anniversary celebration in June.

Aquaponics is the relatively new combination of two more established farming models: aquaculture – the farming of fish – and hydroponics – growing plants with nutrients supplied by water. When put together, they form an integrated system that requires no soil and, in Riverbend’s model, will operate solely on collected rainwater.

The $800,000 project has been the focus of a major fundraising campaign, which is three-quarters of the way to its overall goal, said Riverbend Executive Director Laurie Bachman in a recent interview at the center’s main building, its signature red barn. The campaign, as of late November, was just $30,000 shy of the first phase goal of $600,000 that will enable construction to begin in early spring..

Bachman said the idea for an aquaponics project grew out of the center’s most recent master site development planning in 2010. A number of improvements had been proposed, to be supported by the center’s successful application for a $300,000 grant of Pennsylvania Redevelopment Assistance Capital Project (RACP) funds.

While that process was going on, Bachman said she had met an Exton architect, Brian Hillestad, founder of a new non-profit organization called Veteran Community Farms when he was interested in using the barn for an event.

Hillestad’s idea was to use aquaponics as a means to provide jobs and training for returning military veterans. He was inspired to create the organization when he heard statistics that one in five homeless men in American is a veteran of military service.

More comment in western states, aquaponics is still quite new in the East, Bachman explained. Locally, there is a large, well-established aquaponics operation at Cheyney University, using a 10,000-square-foot greenhouse. Products – fish and typically basil or lettuce – are sold to local restaurants and at farmers’ markets.


When she first heard about Hillestad’s organization, Bachman said Riverbend was not in a position to engage in it. But about a year later, when the center had applied for the RACP grant, “It occurred to me, maybe instead of some of the projects [in the master plan] we could do an aquaponics project.”

While the projects in the master plan are valuable – one involves building a new, larger pond to support Riverbend’s popular pond life programs – they would also add expenses to the center’s operating budget.

“Aquaponics was an opportunity to go into an educational area we don’t currently touch – sustainable farming,” she explained. At the same time, with a partner like Veteran Community Farms handling day-to-day operations, it would also provide a revenue stream to support Riverbend’s programs and perhaps those future master plan improvements.

Plans were developed for a 4,380-square-foot greenhouse to be built on a portion of the property closely overlooking the Schuylkill Expressway that, because of the highway noise, was not as useful for educational purposes. In the master plan, it had been identified as a composting area.

The $800,000 cost of the project includes the greenhouse and rainwater collection system,, rain gardens to also control stormwater runoff, improvements to a trail leading to the greenhouse location, and the installation of composting toilets to serve visitors and employees of the aquaponics operation.

Earlier this year, Riverbend obtained needed zoning and land development approvals from Lower Merion Township for the project.

This is how the farm will work. Fish, typically tilapia, will be grown in a large tank. Water from the tank containing nutrients from fish waste and algae is filtered and pumped to shallow beds in which basil, lettuce or other greens have been planted in a gravel base. The plants filter the water, which is recirculated to the fish tank.

It’s estimated that an operation of this size could produce 40,000 heads of lettuce or 10,000 basil plants and 3,200 pounds of tilapia annually.

At the same time, the environmental benefits of this year-round, non-weather-dependent farming method include that no pesticides are needed, the use of fossil-fuel products is eliminated, rainwater is recycled, and several times more food can be produced with less man-hours than traditional farming. Aquaponics has been called the “most sustainable, naturally grown agriculture for the future.”


This will be Veteran Community Farms’ first large operation in the area, Bachman said. “They wanted to work with us because of the opportunity for educational programs” and because of Riverbend’s location with easy access to Philadelphia
Before embarking on the project, “We did preliminary surveys. There seemed to be a lot of interest,” Bachman said. “People have started to hear about it,” she added. Teachers are interested because tours and lessons at the farm will engage students; colleges are interested in internship opportunities. Also important, Riverbend saw an opportunity to increase educational interest for adult visitors. “There are so many opportunities, and we’re not even talking about [the] food [produced] yet.”


“It’s such a privilege for us to present cutting-edge, sustainable agriculture,” Bachman said. She hopes Riverbend’s project can be a model for other farms in the area or even homeowners, who might want to try aquaponics “on a small scale” in their backyards.


Bachman said the project has seen generous support from corporate donors and others to meeting the fundraising goals. Contributions are still needed to close the remaining gap. Information about how to support the project can be found at www.riverbendeec.org.


If all goes as planned, the project will be launched with a ribbon-cutting next June 7 as a part of a celebration of 40 years of stewardship and environmental education on the land, initially set aside by members of the Wood family from their much larger Gladwyne estates.


In those 40 years, environmental education programs for local and Philadelphia area schoolchildren have grown tremendously, Bachman said, serving 17,000 children in 2013, double the number of just six years ago.


At the same time, progress has been made to preserve and restore the land. Since 2008, volunteers have planted some 2,000 trees. Where forest “was becoming quite degraded by invasive plants and deer over-browse,” Bachman said, “we’ve started restoring it to a natural, native landscape.”


“The Wood family wanted to preserve this open space for the community,” she said. “It has not been an easy road, but people have really cared, and the aquaponics project will help ensure that.”

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蔬菜對溫度日照條件的要求

蔬菜對溫度日照條件的要求
全日照  8個小時日照 瓜類、茄果類、豆類、山藥、豆薯(地瓜)。番茄、黃瓜、茄子、辣椒等喜溫中、強光性
蔬菜夏秋季生產,玉米、青椒、西瓜、南瓜、西紅柿、茄子、芝麻、向日葵類。
其次是根莖類,如:馬鈴薯、甜菜、胡蘿蔔、白蘿蔔、甘藷、山藥等等。至少需半日照,才能生長,芋頭雖喜歡全日照,但比其他蔬菜耐蔭。 
需要中等光照大白菜、甘藍、芥菜、蒜、洋蔥。 

長日性蔬菜白菜、甘藍、芥菜、蘿蔔、胡蘿蔔、芹菜、菠菜、萵苣、蠶豆、豌豆、大蔥、洋蔥。

短日性蔬菜豇豆、扁豆、莧菜、空心菜。         

中光性蔬菜黃瓜、番茄、茄子、辣椒、菜豆

菜豆

菜豆喜溫暖,不耐高溫和霜凍。菜豆種子發芽的適溫為20-30℃;在40℃以上的高溫和10℃以下的低溫,種子不易發芽。幼苗生長適宜氣溫為18-25℃。花芽分化的適宜氣溫為20-25℃,過高或過低溫度易出現發育不完全的花蕾、落花。

菜豆對光照強度的要求較高。在適宜溫度條件下,光照充足則植株生長健壯,莖的節間短而分枝多,開花結莢比較多,而且有利於根部對磷肥的吸收。當光照強度減弱時,植株易徒長,莖的節間長,分枝少,葉質薄,而且開花結莢數少,易落花落莢。

菜豆根系強大,能耐一定程度乾旱,但喜中度濕潤土壤條件,要求水分供應適中,不耐澇。生長期適宜土壤濕度為田間最大持水量的60%-70%,空氣相對濕度以80%為宜。開花結莢期對水分最敏感,此期土壤乾旱對開花結莢有不良影響,開花數、結莢數及莢內種子數減少。土壤水分過大時,下部葉片黃化,早脫落。空氣濕度過大會引起徒長、結莢不良。

菜豆具有深根性和根瘤菌,對土壤的要求不甚嚴格,但仍以土層深厚肥沃、排水良好的輕砂壤土或粘質壤土為好。土壤過於粘重、低溫、排水和通氣不良則生長不良,炭疽病重。菜豆喜中性至微酸性土壤,適宜的土壤pH為5-7.0,其中以州6.2-6.8最適宜。菜豆最忌連作,生產中應實行2-3年輪作。

菜豆生育過程中,主要吸收鉀和氮較多,還要吸收一定量的磷和鈣,才能良好發育。結莢期吸收磷鉀量較大。磷鉀肥對菜豆植株的生長發育、根瘤菌的發育、花芽分化、開花結莢和種子的發育等均有影響。缺乏磷肥,菜豆嫩莢和種子的品質和產量就會降低。缺鈣,幼葉葉片捲曲,葉緣失綠和生長點死亡。缺硼,則根係不發達,影響根瘤菌固氮,使花和豆莢發育不良。 耐陰半陰(大概3-4小時日照) 應選擇耐陰的蔬菜種植,如萵…

錦鯉養殖基本知識

◎飼養與管理的重點 只要不是劇烈的變化,錦鯉很容易適應各水溫水質等環境的變化。並不是沒有大庭園就無法飼養,有人甚至在二樓陽台或頂樓陽台造水池飼養。然而我們是欣賞錦鯉雄壯豪邁之氣,因此水池盡量寬闊為宜,以水深1.2m以上為理想。魚池必須有底水排出,過濾循環等設備。用水不一定要取地下水,自來水也可以飼養。
<因為都市中有景觀安全的需求,及屋頂花園有荷重的需求,錦鯉池水深可以低到30cm左右。>
◎每天排水
A、糞或枯死的藻類全部送至過濾槽的話,耗氧量會增大,pH就下降,更會轉變為亞硝酸,增了過濾槽的負擔。為了盡量減輕過濾槽的負擔,每天至少把魚池的底水排水使固物排出去,把中間水送去沉澱槽及過濾槽。 
B、把固體廢物的魚糞集中排出,最好不要從池底打氣而是從排糞口的上方40~50公分打打氣。如此氣泡往上昇。池水產生對流。污物就集中於排糞口。
<可以設計水流把固體廢物盡量集中或排出到過濾系統中。>
◎過濾槽管理
A、細菌附著於濾材,分解固體廢物會消耗大量的氧。 
B、溶氧不足時,厭氧菌會把硝酸還原亞硝酸,或從碳酸氣發生沼氣,也會從硫酸分解產生硫化氫等有毒氣體。
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◎溶氧要充份
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C、使用沸石可輕易去除硝酸,沸石量約等重於魚體總重量。
<沸石再生法,是將沸石浸泡25℃以上1:10食鹽水數小時,再以清水洗淨即可。>
◎水質的控制
水質硬度高的話,錦鯉肌膚經常會有少許充血的狀態。豔麗性也會慢慢消失,紅緋會上升。pH值低,肌膚變的很不好看,但是雖餵增色飼料,依然不見起色,徒增浪費。pH值7.1~7.5最適宜的。
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良好的魚餌不會崩壞鯉的體型。餌的量也是在夏天水溫 高的時候,訂定停餌期間,才是整體來說使鯉變胖最重要的秘訣。如果還是想 要給很多餌的話,要增加循還量。錦鯉在水溫超過28度的時候,應給與相當於 鯉全體重量3%的餌。水溫25度時1.5%,水溫20度時0.3%,16度以下則要停止鯉餌,這就是鯉魚長得強壯的要訣。連續不斷地給鯉餌的話,引起內臟障礙, 而影響到鯉不會長壯,甚至導至體型的變歪。
◎魚病預防
水的管理與定期消毒都是很重要的步驟,…

蝶豆花

蝶豆花 原產拉丁美洲的蝶豆花是一種典型的熱帶蔓藤植物,全年盛開。
butterfly pea,拉丁語叫:Clitoria ternatea,泰語叫Dok Anchan
中文名叫蝶豆花,藍蝶花,藍蝴蝶、蝴蝶藍花,還有蝴羊豆、豆碧等別名。
用蝶豆花當作高品位浪漫的茶品飲用、以及當作天然食品色素制作糕點是拉丁美洲和南洋國家的風情和習俗。
蝶豆花的味道自然甘甜,南洋國家的一些五星級酒店通常把蝶豆花茶當作高貴的迎賓茶來接待貴賓。
營養價值 蝶豆花具有豐富的維他命A,C和E, 而且可以提高免疫力, 幫助和促進皮膚的彈力和骨膠原, 同時還具有補腦,促進腦的活力,防止胃痛,抗憂郁、抗壓力、鎮靜、止驚厥、緩和情緒等天然保健功效。
蝶豆花中的天然藍色素,也是有療效的。如果將其加入檸檬並調制成花茶飲品,就是保健心臟血管的絕佳飲料。
食用價值 蝶豆花的可食部位是葉、花及嫩莢。較幼嫩的葉片及盛開的花朵,亦可拿來煮湯、油炸等。用嫩芽來炒肉絲或煮熟後食用,都十分可口。蝶豆花的葉及花的萃取液,可當作純天然的食品染料。

直達香草(herb4kitchen)
PS.營業用批量報價