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SJCM Young Leaders say Hydroponics is it!

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Imagine a St. Vincent and the Grenadines where tomatoes stay the same price the whole year round! Imagine a St. Vincent and the Grenadines where we wouldn’t have to import vegetables! We live in a climate where there is sun all year round, and relatively the same temperature.{{more}} So why is it that we cannot grow our own vegetables all year long? Yes, at times of the year, there is a dry season. But hydroponics is the answer!

St. Joseph’s Convent Marriaqua Young Leaders have based their project on the idea that if they can collect and conserve the rain water to use during the dry season, they can use the water to run a hydroponics system. Because hydroponic agriculture recycles nutrients, it requires less water, and does not leach excess fertilizers into the environment.

Hydroponics is used worldwide. It is used in countries where there is desert, where there is snow and where the land is not fertile. Canada, where it snows and is cold most of the year, is a great example: there is high demand for fresh vegetables year round, and they are getting their needs met. Most of the green houses in British Colombia (a Canadian province) grow their vegetables hydroponically. Hydroponics could be the answer to solving the problem of growing vegetables during the dry season in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and keeping costs consistent. It would also provide jobs locally, while saving on importing fruits and vegetables from other countries, which would certainly provide a much needed boost to the economy. In addition, if there is a surplus of vegetables, St. Vincent and the Grenadines could export, furthering incomes. Imagine… hydroponics for poverty alleviation!

Nobody wants to pay $30 for a pint of strawberries here in St. Vincent and the Grenadines. And strawberries are fruits that will not ripen after being picked, so they have to be harvested when ripe and not green. Strawberries can be grown hydroponically! Imagine… hydroponics for strawberries!

Hydroponics also puts a new face on agriculture. In a society where agriculture is on the decline, hydroponics could be the answer. Hydroponics takes away the labour intensity of working in the fields and raises agriculture to a new level, both metaphorically and literally, since hydroponic vegetables can be grown vertically! Hydroponics saves space and can be easily set up as someone’s home garden. Hydroponics has higher yields with better tasting, more nutritious food. Imagine… hydroponics for health!

For more information on hydroponics contact sjcmyoungleaders@hotmail.com

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