Lincoln Farms- doing agriculture the modern way

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Wayne Gardner

Aquaponics is a modern way of farming.

It is a food production system which allows farmers to grow vegetables and raise fish at the same time.

It’s an integrated system where there is a synergy between hydroponics and aquaculture.

“What we have here is an Aquaponics facility.  Aquaponics is basically the integration of hydroponics which is growing plants or vegetables in a soilless culture using water as the medium and aquaculture which is raising fishes. Once you bring them in an integrated system, it’s called Aquaponics”, said Wayne Gardner, Owner of Lincoln Farms.

Lincoln Farms is a memorial for the late Lincoln Gardner.

The facility has been in existence for seven years but opened to the public for six years.

According to Wayne, his father was a fisherman by profession but in his senior years, he transitioned to agriculture before his passing in 2014.

For a little while after, the work on the farm continued under his mother’s supervision.

However, it was not very profitable thus the birth of the Aquaponics Farm.

“My father was a fisherman and after getting to a certain age, we didn’t like the fact that he was going on the seas to fish. Not wanting to keep still, you know how these older folks are, he got this piece of land and started doing agriculture on it” Gardner said.

The combination of both entities – fishing and farming, was Wayne’s brilliant idea, costly but quite a successful one.

However, the journey was not easy and looking back at the road to success, he can afford to smile at all the hurdles and setbacks he had encountered.

These obstacles ranged from larceny and burglary coupled with the two main operational constraints which were poor water quality and the exorbitant electricity cost. The solutions to these problems were addressed, but at a high price.

At Lincoln Farms, there are strict practices in place to guarantee optimum growth and high yield.

Some of these are no inbreeding of the fishes and breeders are purchased from the U.S.

This is done to keep the breed pure.

A proper monitoring system is also in place for clean and balanced water.

This enables the fishes to develop at an optimum pace.

Additionally, before going on the market, every fish goes through a purging process which affords it to taste like saltwater fish instead of the typical earthy taste.

“Presently, we are producing three thousand (3, 000) pounds of fish monthly but have the ability of doubling that amount, which are plate size and larger” Gardner said.

In the past, produce such as Kale, tomatoes, celery and sweet peppers were grown at Lincoln Farms but were discontinued because they were not profitable.

At the moment, the Farm produces several types of lettuce, basil, mint and parsley.

On a weekly basis, Lincoln Farms is producing over three thousand (3,000) heads of lettuce and intends to increase that amount since that was a demand.  When asked about plans going forward, Wayne indicated that he intends to erect an indoor greenhouse and a storage facility.

 

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2 COMMENTS

  1. APUA need to do better with the water it supplies to the people. It has too much chlorine. It’s damaged your faucets and shower pipes too fast chlorine erosion.

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