Last month Aiken SWCD hosted our 2nd Aquaponics Workshop. There were 28 participants from across the state that attended. The workshop was made possible through a grant from Clemson Extension's South Carolina New and Beginning Farmer Program. Brendan Buttimer, an Economic Development Finance Professional with the South Carolina Community Loan Fund kicked off the workshop on Saturday, May 12, 2018. Mr. Buttimer spoke about food access in South Carolina and discussed ways that farmers in our communities can positively contribute to food access issues while still profiting from their farm business. Brendan can be e-mailed at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to learn more about his presentation and what he does with the South Carolina Community Load Fund.
Dr. Lance Beecher, an Aquaculture and Fisheries Specialist with Clemson Extension, followed Mr. Buttimer. Dr. Beecher's presentation began in the classroom. He discussed aquaponics basics, system components, fish biology, plant selection and considerations, nutrient dynamics, water quality, and marketing your final product.
For the second part of Dr. Beecher's presentation the group moved outside. With Dr. Beecher's instruction the group worked together to build a fully functioning aquaponics system.
Once the system was completed, it was raffled off to one of the participants. Mr. Jim Kelly took the system home. He was thrilled, we'll check back in with him in a few months to see how the system is running.
If there is a workshop that you'd like to see happen in Aiken County, e-mail us at email@example.com or give us a call at 803-262-4470.