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Aquaponic Gardening: A Step-By-Step Guide to Raising Vegetables and Fish Together Paperback – October 11, 2011

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: New Society Publishers; Original edition (October 11, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 086571701X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0865717015
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 7.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (368 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,757 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


This isn't just another book for dummies; this is a comprehensive handbook on how to grow real meticulously documented, that failure is not an option. --Jeff Edwards – President, Progressive Gardening Trade Association (PGTA)

I have always wanted to put my money where my mouth is and figure out how to do sustainable aquaculture in the context of my home garden. Finally I’ve got the book to help me do it. --Paul Greenberg - Best Selling Author, Four Fish: The Future of the Last Wild Food

This is a delightful book to read! ... I’ve been involved with hydroponics and aquaculture for 30 years and still learned from reading this very thorough how-to book. --Henry A. Robitaille, PhD - Former General Manager, The Land Exhibit, Epcot Center

Learning how to garden through the creation of a completely balanced ecosystem is now clearly understandable, even to inexperienced gardeners. -- Michael C. Metallo, President and CEO, National Gardening Association

Sylvia Bernstein has provided the "aquapons of the world" with a clear, impassioned, and elegant "Bible" to spread the good news about aquaponics. --James J. Godsil, co-founder Sweet Water Organics Sweet Water Foundation

Aquaponic Gardening is an excellent primer for anyone considering home-scale aquaculture. Whatever your location or methods, the information should prove invaluable. Fish are within reach! --Peter Bane, Publisher of Permaculture Activist magazine

Now the thousands of people who are discovering aquaponics every day have a resource for moving from the dream to the step-by-step reality of raising fish and food in their homes, yards, and even businesses. --John Thompson Sr. VP Sales and Marketing (and Basement and Backyard Aquaponist) AeroGrow International, Inc.

This book is a vital resource for urban homesteaders. --Sundari Kraft, author of "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Urban Homesteading"

The science is so well explained, it is easily understood. I am ready to start. I love this book! --Jeff Lowenfels, Author, "Teaming With Microbes"

About the Author

Sylvia Bernsteinis the president and founder of The Aquaponic Source and the co-Founder and former Vice Chairman of the Aquaponics Association. She also manages, the largest US-based online forum site dedicated to aquaponic gardening. An experienced speaker and internationally recognized expert on aquaponic gardening, Sylvia writes and blogs on the subject for the Aquaponic Gardening Blog, Maxiumum Yield and more. Her inspiration is a large, thriving aquaponic setup in her backyard greenhouse in Boulder, CO powered by tilapia, catfish, bluegill and other creatures-that-swim.

More About the Author

Sylvia Bernstein is the President and Founder of The Aquaponic Source, the leading U.S. based company focused entirely on the home aquaponic gardener. She runs the Aquaponic Gardening Community, the largest online community site dedicated to aquaponic gardening in North America, and is the co-Founder and former Vice Chairman of the Aquaponics Association. She also writes for the Aquaponic Gardening Blog, Maxiumum Yield Magazine and other publications about aquaponics and its exciting potential.

In her recent past life Sylvia was the VP of Marketing and Product Development for AeroGrow International, the makers of the AeroGarden. She was one of the company's original founders and was instrumental in developing the plant growth technology.

Sylvia has a degree in Agricultural Economics from the University of California, Davis and an MBA from the University of Chicago. She currently lives in Boulder, Colorado with her husband, Alan. They have a large, thriving aquaponic setup in their backyard greenhouse in Boulder powered by tilapia, catfish, bluegill and other creatures-that-swim.

Customer Reviews

Very informative and an easy to understand.
Charles Adams
This great little book had everything I needed for getting started with a home aquaponics gardening system.
judy laurens
I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in learning more on the subject.
Amazon Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

246 of 263 people found the following review helpful By S. C. Johnson on October 18, 2011
Format: Paperback
I just finished this amazing book. I already knew a good deal about aquaponics - at least I thought I did - when I decided I had to read this book to see what the buzz was all about. What a great decision and what a great read. Here's why.

My first impression when I opened up the box I received from Amazon was this is a beautiful cover. I also noticed from the logo on the cover, that the book is a Mother Earth News book selection. Then I flipped it over and immediately spotted that two experts with whom I am personally aware, loved and endorsed the book. This caused me to immediately flip to the Table of Contents.

I found that the list of topics with lots of promised detail was all that I was hoping for. Because the Table of Contents is not visible from within Amazon (publisher and author, I suggest you fix this), I provide some detail here. The book is organized into five main Sections each with two or more chapters (there are 15 chapters in all) plus seven appendices intended as reference resources and a full index.

Section One introduces Aquaponics and puts it into perspective not only relative to other growing methods, but also with regard to the ever increasing issues and challenges that our global population is encountering with food supplies, food safety, food cost, and the impact of agriculture on the planet. This section closes with several pages on the idea of producing food right at your home. Some may think they want to skip the introduction. I think doing so would be a lost opportunity to see just how important aquaponics may prove to be to all of us in the years to come.

Section Two is called The Plan. Ultimately, this book is about how you can become an aquaponics gardener at home.
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118 of 125 people found the following review helpful By Bob Jordan on October 5, 2011
Format: Paperback
I've built and operated two large hobby system this last year and this is THE book I was looking for when I started.

Everyone seems to make Aquaponics (AP) a DIY project. Although its not hard to build, operate and grow your own produce, there are a lot of places where you can make it challenging if you don't have access to good info. Learning AP from the Internet is a mixed blessing. Too much conflicting and misleading and even mis-applied info for a beginner.

Sylvia's book takes the guess work out of building your first or 50th system and rapidly makes it a success. It will be an invaluable resource for you, whether you are the novice, the follow-the-instruction type, the impatient ADHD prone, or the Do It Yourselfer.

All the info is in the book, well categorized, and easy to understand so you can be eating back yard grown, natural, organic, and delicious produce ASAP!

This book will help you create your own customized AP system, that will work and work well.

Aquaponicfun dot com
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184 of 205 people found the following review helpful By soil sommelier on November 10, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
There is nothing here that an hour with Google can't replace. Her "science" is lacking at best, and completely false everywhere else. Core issues of the process are given a very biased and cursory treatment. There is however a good bit of time spent trying to lay not so subtle support for her $1,300 packaged "system" (two tubs and a pump on a T.V. stand).

"The covers of this book are too far apart."
- Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914)

A quick example of the author's depth of wisdom:
Her comparisons of artificial lighting choices refer to lumens, which are a unit of measure that is relative to what the human eye can register. Were aquaponics a system for growing or impairing human eyes I suppose this might be useful. Plants "see" light differently. They use different parts of the spectrum for different things, and this is pretty much completely ignored.
She continually refers to the process of water draining and being replaced by new solution provided by a pump, as a process that sucks oxygen into the media. Physics and fluid dynamics be damned.
Her contention that magnetic drive pond-type pumps are the obviously superior choice just adds to her credentials as a bloviator of the first order. The multitude of reliable circulating pumps available that are more efficient, longer lasting, more reliable, etc. is but one more example of just how limited her knowledge and/or research on the subject is.
On one hand she champions "earth friendly" practices, while forgiving her own system's and suggested practices that don't even begin to fill the bill. Me thinks her an opportunistic fraud.
Her suggestion that her methods will result in a system that never needs cleaning is complete idiocy.
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134 of 153 people found the following review helpful By Andrew on January 28, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Now, before I say -anything- I would like to thank the author for presenting aquaponics in such a concise, clear, and informative fashion. I've been searching the net for months on end gathering information about systems and deciding how and where to build them. This book provided all that and more and I highly recommend it to anyone that is interested in the subject. All those five star ratings are for a good reason.

That said, I don't know what happened to the kindle version. I'm working at saving money right now and reducing how much space I take up by selling books and trying to replace them with the kindle books. I've been acquiring a lot of data, and occasionally finding new and interesting things to read in the kindle store.

I say all of this to give a little background on why I'd give such a great book a low rating. On Amazon there are some kindle books that are free, and some kindle books that you pay money for. Generally when you get one for free it's expected to not have the finest formatting available nor is it usually going to have a table of contents. Paragraphs and chapter headings may not be clear. These are all things that I expect from a free or under five dollar kindle title.

I believe I payed around ten dollars for the kindle edition of step by step aquaponics and immediately noticed that there was no table of contents. This is a bit bothersome considering that there are some "rules of thumb" thoughtfully provided by the author in an appendix that I'm going to have to slog through the entire book just to get to and look at.
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